Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Billings, MT

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FXUS65 KBYZ 251041
AFDBYZ

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BILLINGS MT
341 AM MST WED FEB 25 2015

.SHORT TERM...VALID FOR TDY AND THU...

SCATTERED TO NUMEROUS SHOWERS ACROSS THE CENTRAL ZONES EARLY THIS
MORNING ARE BASICALLY FORMING WITHIN AN INVERTED SURFACE TROUGH.
COLD AIR HAS YET TO REALLY INVADE THE FORECAST AREA AND HI-
RESOLUTION MODELS BACK DOOR BETTER COOLING IN BY 4-5 AM THIS
MORNING. UNTIL THEN...I DOUBT THERE WILL BE MUCH SNOWFALL
ACCUMULATIONS BELOW 4000 FT. HOWEVER...FROM 5 AM TO NOON THERE
APPEARS TO BE A POTENTIAL FOR AREAS OF MODERATE SNOWFALL AS
UPSLOPE ALONG NORTHERN FACES PICKS UP AND COLDER AIR FILTERS IN.
PROGGS AND BUFKIT SHOW LOW LEVEL INSTABILITY AND WIND FIELDS
SUPPORTING LOCAL SNOW SQUALLS THAT COULD DROP A QUICK HALF INCH TO
INCH OF SNOWFALL...MAINLY FROM BILLINGS WEST AND SOUTH. SNOW
LINGERS OVER THE WESTERN ZONES TONIGHT IN THE NW FLOW ALOFT AS
CYCLONIC FLOW STRENGTHENS. FLURRIES MAY CONTINUE IN THE WEST INTO
THURSDAY...BUT WITH LITTLE ADDITIONAL ACCUMULATIONS.

THEREFORE...THE WINTER WEATHER ADVISORIES LOOK GOOD AS DO THEIR
END TIMES OF 8 AM THURSDAY MORNING. THAT SAID...WOULD NOT BE
SURPRISED IF WE HAVE A FEW LOCATIONS IN OR NEAR THE FOOTHILLS GO
OVER 6 INCHES /WARNING CRITERIA AS OPPOSED TO ADVISORY CRITERIA/
IN SOME UNSTABLE BANDS. BUT THESE ARE DIFFICULT TO PLACE THIS TIME
OF YEAR UNDER NW FLOW. WE WILL USE OTHER OUTLETS AND PRODUCTS TO
RAISE AWARENESS OF THIS POSSIBILITY.

AS FOR BILLINGS SPECIFICALLY...RAIN SHOWERS CHANGING TO MOSTLY
SNOW IS LIKELY AFTER ABOUT 430 AM. THERE IS A GOOD INDICATION OF
A NARROW BAND DEVELOPING NEAR BILLINGS THAT COULD PRODUCE 1 OR 2
INCHES IN A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME LATER THIS MORNING INTO THE EARLY
AFTERNOON...AND WITH TEMPERATURES DROPPING THROUGH THE DAY SOME OF
THIS MAY ACCUMULATE ON ROADS. ONCE AGAIN...THIS MAY BE BEST
HANDLED BY SHORT SPECIAL WEATHER STATEMENTS THAN ISSUING AN
ADVISORY AS THERE IS LITTLE CONFIDENCE IN PLACEMENT OF SUCH BANDS.

LOOK FOR TEMPERATURES 20 TO 25 DEGREES BELOW SEASONAL AVERAGES FOR
THURSDAY AND A VERY CHILLY THURSDAY NIGHT WITH READINGS AROUND
ZERO COMMON. BT

.LONG TERM...VALID FOR FRI...SAT...SUN...MON...TUE...

EXTENDED PERIOD STARTS ON FRIDAY WITH THE TREASURE STATE ON THE
EASTERN SIDE OF AN UPPER LEVEL RIDGE THAT IS CENTERED OVER THE
GULF OF ALASKA. A COMBINATION OF THE NORTHWESTERLY FLOW ALOFT AND
CIRCULATION AROUND A CUTOFF LOW CENTERED OVER THE GREAT BASIN WILL
HELP USHER IN SOME ENERGY ACROSS CENTRAL MONTANA BY LATE SATURDAY
NIGHT. POTENTIAL EXISTS FOR SOME SNOW DURING THIS TIMEFRAME...BUT
AMOUNTS WILL BE ON THE LOW END...MAINLY CONFINED TO HIGHER
ELEVATIONS. AS FAR AS TEMPS ARE CONCERNED...FRIDAY AND SATURDAY
WILL BE PRETTY CHILLY WITH LOWS IN SOME AREAS DIPPING BELOW ZERO.

NEXT WEATHER MAKER IS PROGGED TO COME MONDAY NIGHT INTO TUESDAY.
GFS IS QUITE A BIT MORE AGGRESSIVE IN BRINGING AN ELONGATED
SHORTWAVE ACROSS CENTRAL MONTANA. TEMPERATURE WISE...THE SHORTWAVE
WILL LOWER HEIGHTS SIGNIFICANTLY...BRINGING IN MUCH COLDER AIR.
850 MB TEMPS ON THE ORDER OF -20C WOULD TRANSLATE TO HIGHS IN THE
LOWER 20S DURING THE DAY. PRECIP WISE...IN LOOKING AT THE CIPS
TIME LAGGED GUIDANCE...MODEL CONSISTENCY HIGHLIGHTS SOUTHERN AND
EASTERN ZONES AS THE BEST LOCALES FOR ANY POTENTIAL ACCUMULATING
SNOWFALL. SINGER
&&

.AVIATION...

CEILINGS HAVE BEEN LOWERING AT ALL TERMINALS DURING THE NIGHTTIME
HOURS...EXPECTING THAT TREND TO CONTINUE AS SNOW SHOWERS START TO
MOVE INTO THE FORECAST AREA THIS MORNING. NORTHERLY WINDS HAVE
BEEN GOING STRONG ALL NIGHT...ESPECIALLY AT KBIL...KLVM...AND KMLS
DUE TO STRONG PRESSURE CHANGES ACROSS CENTRAL MONTANA. WINDS
SHOULD DIMINISH BY THIS AFTERNOON AND GIVE WAY TO STRONGER SNOW
SHOWERS. BIGGEST VISIBILITY IMPACTS WILL BE SEEN NEAR KBIL AND
KSHR...WITH MVRF AND IFR CONDITIONS LIKELY. SINGER
&&

.PRELIMINARY POINT TEMP/POPS...

    TDY THU     FRI     SAT     SUN     MON     TUE
-------------------------------------------------------
BIL 034 008/017 000/025 010/021 004/026 013/037 016/023
    8/W 32/J    01/B    22/J    21/U    11/U    34/J
LVM 033 006/021 903/031 008/021 907/030 010/038 015/025
    7/S 62/J    02/J    44/J    31/U    11/N    44/J
HDN 034 007/020 901/028 007/024 003/027 009/038 015/026
    7/J 30/B    01/B    12/J    21/U    11/U    33/J
MLS 027 902/014 902/026 008/024 007/028 011/037 014/024
    3/J 10/U    01/U    11/B    11/U    11/U    23/J
4BQ 030 000/014 904/026 006/024 003/025 008/036 014/026
    6/J 20/U    01/B    12/J    21/U    11/U    23/J
BHK 020 907/011 906/025 005/022 004/028 010/036 012/024
    4/J 10/U    00/U    11/B    11/U    11/U    22/J
SHR 032 005/014 901/024 004/019 902/022 005/034 012/022
    9/S 52/J    01/U    22/J    21/U    11/U    34/J

&&

.BYZ WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
MT...WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IN EFFECT UNTIL 8 AM MST THURSDAY FOR
      ZONES 38-56-66.
WY...WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IN EFFECT UNTIL 8 AM MST THURSDAY FOR
      ZONES 98-99.

&&

$$
WEATHER.GOV/BILLINGS



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