Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Fairbanks, AK

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FXAK69 PAFG 211332

Northern Alaska Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Fairbanks AK
432 AM AKST Thu Feb 21 2019


Synopsis...Low spinning over St Lawrence Island continues to
bring some gusty winds, snow, and blowing snow to the region, but
winds have diminished and conditions are improving. Another low
will be moving through the area, so more Winter Weather Watches
and Advisories are in effect for areas of the West Coast. Some
light snow or flurries in the Western and Southern Interior today,
but not expecting any significant accumulations. The Arctic will
be pretty quiet today with some stratus floating around and patchy
fog this morning.

Models...Agreement continues with 21/00Z solutions initializing
well. But like the last few days, they all seem to be making
similar big changes beyond the 24 hour point from previous
solutions. Surface solutions initialized well against the 21/06Z
analysis, with the exception of the low near St Lawrence Island
being about 3 mb too low. Solutions show similar timing of the
evolution of the major features through Saturday. Will use a blend
of the SREF/NAM again today. While for winds will use the NAMDNG
solution again.

Aloft...At 500 hpa...A 531 dam closed high has developed over the
Western Arctic Plain and will move northwest to 200 nm northwest
of Point Lay by Thursday morning, then moves back south and
merges into ridging that is over the Pacific and will move to the
West Coast and build north over the state Friday. A trough
associated with a low over the Pole will move rapidly east across
the Arctic will offshore and will be over the Beaufort Sea by late
this evening. A 505 dam stacked low over St Matthew Island will
continue north over St Lawrence Island by late this evening, then
over Wales by Late Thursday evening as it fills, then merges with
a low that will be in the Northwestern Bering Sea Friday morning.
A 523 dam low will develop over Bristol Bay tonight and move to
the Northern Gulf of Alaska by Thursday morning at 520 dam, and
south of Yakutat at 512 dam Thursday evening. Ridging will
continue to build over the state with 540 dam heights pushing
north to the Arctic Coast Saturday night. At 850 hpa...The -10C
isotherm is splitting the state with colder temperatures east of
Tanana, and warmer temperatures to the west. Warmer temperatures
will moderate Thursday as the low fills. The next low will bring
more above -10C temperatures to the west coast as the isotherm
splits the state again. As the ridging aloft builds the -10C
isotherm will move north and east allowing for some pockets of
above 0C temperatures to be pulled north over the state.

Surface...High pressure associated with a 10312 mb high over the
Upper Yukon Flats extends northwest to Wrangel Island. A 970 mb
low near ST Matthew Island will move north to St Lawrence Island
by this evening, then to Wales by Thursday evening at 1007 mb. The
low will continue to fill and merge with a 975 mb low moving
northeast across the Bering Sea to the Gulf of Anadyr at 983 mb
Friday afternoon. A 1022 mb high develops northwest of Wrangel
Island this evening and moves to 200 nm north of Wainwright by
Thursday evening, then over MacKenzie Bay by Friday morning as it
merges with high pressure over the Upper Yukon Flats and the Yukon
Territory. Troughing will develop over the Arctic Plains and
combine with high pressure over the Upper Yukon Flats to create a
tight pressure gradient across the Eastern Brooks Range producing
gusty south winds near the passes through the weekend. The low in
the Gulf of Anadyr will continue north into the Arctic Saturday
while high pressure will persist over the Eastern Arctic and
Beaufort Sea.

Arctic Coast and Brooks Range...Pretty quiet. Some flurries on the
Eastern Arctic Coast as a cold front f=moves southeast through
the area this morning. Stratus and patchy fog will be a bother is
a few locations this morning, but expect it to break up late this
morning. South winds picking up and gusting to 35 mph in the
Brooks Range on Friday will make for some challenging travel
conditions with blowing and drifting snow. Winds along the coast
will generally be southeast at 5 to 20 mph. Temperatures will be a
bit cooler tonight, but warmer temperatures are on the way for the
weekend and next week.

West Coast and Western Interior...Conditions improving this
morning as the low weakens and moves slowly north into the
Chukchi Sea late this evening. Snow tapering off through the day,
but more snow moving into the area tonight as the next system
moves into the area. Winter Weather Watches and Advisories are in
effect so residents should remain prepared for significant
weather impacts to the area. Winds not quite as strong as the last
System, but some areas will still have winds gusting to around 50
mph. Expect some heavy snow as well in the Bendeleben Mountains on
the Seward Peninsula, the Nulato Hills, the Baird Mountains, and
Western Brooks Range. Temperatures will be warming.

Central and Eastern Interior...A few flurries possible through
noon, otherwise generally high clouds that will be clearing later
today for most Interior locations. A few flurries possible again
late Friday, but most of the area will be partly cloudy. Low
temperatures will be cloud dependent, no clouds lows will bottom
out in the teens to around 30 below, clouds they will stay in the
single digits to around 20 below. highs will be zero to 20 above.
Winds generally light and variable.


Extended forecast for days 4 to 7...Ridging aloft over the state
will keep weather systems to the west as they move up and over the
ridge. A front will move up the coast Sunday afternoon through
Monday spreading a mix of precipitation north to the Western
Arctic Coast. Interior areas will be mostly clear with excellent
potential for Aurora viewing through at least the middle of next
week. Clearing on the West Coast Tuesday and Wednesday. Warmer
temperatures will be pulled north through next week as well with
highs reaching into the mid 30s for some interior locations, and
coastal locations south of the Bering Strait.


Coastal Hazard Potential Days 3 and 4...None.



Winter Storm Watch for AKZ207-AKZ208-AKZ209-AKZ217.

Winter Weather Advisory for AKZ213-AKZ214.

Gale Warning for PKZ210.

Brisk Wind Advisory for PKZ200-PKZ215-PKZ220.



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