Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Albuquerque, NM

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FXUS65 KABQ 292359 AAA

Area Forecast Discussion...UPDATED
National Weather Service Albuquerque NM
559 PM MDT Sat Apr 29 2017

The winter storm system responsible for significant impacts the past
24 hrs will move slowly east into TX tonight. The biggest challenge
was deciding on FG development overnight as many areas have saturated
boundary layer conditions from the Rio Grande Valley eastward. In the
near-term, expect IFR conditions to slowly improve over eastern NM
to MVFR thru 06Z as SN exits the area. An area of -RA/SN moving
south thru the Rio Grande Valley will bring periods of MVFR as well
thru 06Z. Clearing overnight will likely lead to FG development but
deciding on where was very tricky. Leaned toward the RAP/HRRR vsby
forecast which shows values near 3SM from KSAF to KABQ and KAEG,
which may in reality be 1/4SM for a couple hours. NW flow developing
over eastern NM late tonight may inhibit FG development. Clearing is
on tap for all areas Sunday with drier, breezy NW flow.



.PREV DISCUSSION...246 PM MDT Sat Apr 29 2017...
A major late season winter storm is moving east across New Mexico and
will continue into the Texas Panhandle overnight. A very cold airmass
will settle over the area in the wake of the departing storm, sending
temperatures below freezing across a majority of the area. A multi-
day warm-up will ensue by Sunday afternoon, with temperatures rising
to near normal by Tuesday across the southwest half of the area while
a backdoor cold front keeps temperatures cool across the northeast. A
more potent cold front will arrive late Tuesday night into Wednesday
and may bring another round of precipitation to the Northern
Mountains and eastern portions of the state. A renewed warming trend
will kick-off Thursday and send daytime temperatures above normal
areawide by Saturday as a ridge of high pressure moves over the


The focus for snow-related impacts is shifting to the northeast
quarter of the area as the upper low begins to turn east across the
state per the latest water vapor satellite imagery. Impacts
associated with heavy snow from earlier today across central and
north central New Mexico are already waning with roads clearing
rapidly. Showers and a few storm have developed this afternoon across
the western higher terrain, but impacts from these showers will be
very localized and short-lived. Went ahead and dropped a few zones
from the warning/advisory given the lack of impacts and forecast snow
amounts overnight (low). Any snow still flying by 12z Sunday will be
across Union County. An unusually cold airmass will settle-in over
the area tonight as the upper low pulls east across the Texas
Panhandle. A widespread freeze is forecast, but several lower
elevation locales are well past the average last freeze date and have
experienced a prolonged warm-up over the past several weeks with a
pronounced green-up. Decided to issue a Freeze Warning for the Middle
Rio Grande Valley and Curry/Roosevelt/DeBaca Counties for tonight.
Lastly, fog/freezing fog development is possible tonight in the Rio
Grande Valley, but dependent on timing/rate of clearing as the upper
low pulls out. Latest NAM and GFS time/height sections for KABQ show
clearing taking place between 12-15z, which may be too late for fog

A multi-day warm-up will begin tomorrow, with daytime temperatures
reaching back to near/above normal across the southwest half of the
area by Tuesday. The northeast will remain relatively cool Tuesday
due to a backdoor cold front. Bigger changes are coming late Tuesday
night into Wednesday with a stronger cold front as a clipper-type
system ejects out of Colorado and northern New Mexico into the
plains. The 12z GFS and ECMWF both show this feature, but differ
some on the timing and westward penetration and therefore qpf. Our
precipitation chances Wednesday are focused over the northeast
quarter for now, but may need to be extended further south if the
more bullish ECMWF solution continues to show good run-to-run

A renewed warm-up will begin Thursday and send daytime temperatures
back above normal areawide by Saturday when a highly amplified upper
level ridge will transition east over New Mexico. The ECMWF has shown
good run-to-run consistency now with a deep upper low offshore of
Southern California for days 8-10 and the 12z GFS has jumped on this
train. This feature represents our next possible significant weather-
maker, so will be watching closely with potential impacts as early
as May 7th or 8th.



The Pacific low is currently traveling eastward across central and
eastern NM. Rain and snow showers associated with the storm system
will gradually diminish into the evening hours as coverage shifts
east of the central mtn chain. Overnight lows will plummet below
freezing across much of the state as colder air filters southward
behind the exiting Pacific low. Anticipate local vegetation to be
impacted by freezing temperatures tonight through early Sun. Would
not be surprised if freezing fog develops in low elevation areas
with recent snowfall. Overnight recoveries will be good to excellent
areawide. Anticipate gusty NW winds across the NE Plains tonight
lasting into Sun.

Temperatures will remain 15-30 degrees below normal Sun although
values will warm 10-20 degrees from Sat. NW flow aloft will be very
dominate across the state with occasional gusts across higher
terrain areas and the extreme NE Plains. Min RH values will trend
drier across the west with good to fair values central and east.
Ventilation will be spotty near Santa Fe but anticipate good to
excellent values elsewhere.

Conditions will trend warmer and drier through the rest of the week
as zonal NW flow aloft dominates the forecast area with occasional
afternoon breezes developing because a couple of shortwave troughs
moving through the state. The first shortwave trough will cross
northern NM late Mon into Tues with little change in weather but a
second, more potent shortwave will push through CO before clipping
central and eastern NM Tues night into Wed. This clipping shortwave
will send a back door cold front into the eastern plains Wed. The
front will result in increasing dewpoints, wetting precipitation
chances and cooler temperatures across the eastern plains.
Anticipate gusty canyon winds Wed night as the front pushes through
the gaps.

The warmer, drier trend will prevail Thurs into the first half of
the weekend as strong upper level ridging builds over the Great
Basin. Temperatures will warm but remain below normal before
creeping above normal in the west on Thurs, then elsewhere Fri and

Our next chance of unsettling weather will come late Sunday into
Monday from a very potent upper level low traveling down the Pacific
coast with its sights possibly set on the Desert SW sometime early
next week.



Freeze Warning from 3 AM to 9 AM MDT Sunday for the following
zones... NMZ535>537.

Winter Weather Advisory until 3 AM MDT Sunday for the following
zones... NMZ532.

Winter Storm Warning until 3 AM MDT Sunday for the following
zones... NMZ513>515-523-527>531.

Freeze Warning from 1 AM to 10 AM MDT Sunday for the following
zones... NMZ519.


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