Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Fairbanks, AK

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FXAK69 PAFG 181250
AFDAFG

Northern Alaska Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Fairbanks AK
450 AM AKDT Wed Jul 18 2018

.SYNOPSIS...
Aloft...
A progressive flow pattern will continue over Northern Alaska
through Fri, then break down as a strong ridge builds over
Mainland Alaska over the weekend. This means that a wet and windy
pattern will persist over the North Slope, NW Alaska and Northern
Interior, while the southern Interior remains fairly dry with near
normal temperatures. All areas will see drying and warming to
above normal over the weekend.

A weak short wave trough from Inuvik to Northway will move east of
the Alcan Border this morning. There will isolated showers near
Northway this morning.

A very strong short wave just west of Wrangel Island is now
phasing in with the the surface low just northeast of Wrangel
Island, and will cause the surface low to deepen this am. The
strong short wave will move east to North of Barrow til the
Chukotsk Peninsula by 4pm Wed, to North of Barter Island to Cape
Lisburne by 4am Thu, to Banks Island to Barter Island to Point
Hope by 4pm Thu, to Old Crow to Point Hope by 4am Fri, then
stretching east. This trough will cause an associated cold front
to sweep east and the weather will be mentioned below.

Surface...
A 983 mb low 400 NM northwest of Barrow will move to 500 NM
north of Barrow as a 979 mb low by 4pm Wed, to 550 NM north of
Nuiqsut as a 978 MB low by 4am Thu, to 600 NM north of Demarcation
Point as a 979 mb low by 4pm Thu, then weakening slowly in place
through Fri.

A warm front stretching from the low to Deadhorse will move east
of the Alcan Border this afternoon. South winds and warm
temperatures accompany the warm front and will spread east with
the front.

A cold front stretching from the low to the Chukotsk Peninsula
will move to just west of Barrow to Point Hope to the Chukotsk Pen
by 4pm Wed, to Demarcation Point to Umiat to Point Hope by 4am
Thu, to Inuvik to Arctic Village to Kivalina by 4pm Thu, to Old
Crow to Bettles to Kivalina by 4am Fri, then stationary Fri and
weakening. Significant rain along and ahead of the cold front will
spread southeast with the front front today,tonight, and Thu then
gradually diminish on Thu. Expect 0.25-0.50 inch of rain from the
Brooks Range north, as well as in NW Alaska. Rain will taper off
to scattered showers by Thu night.

Southwest winds 25-35kt ahead of the cold front with gusts to
45kt from the Bering Strait to Cape Lisburne to Wainwright. Winds
will turn west and decrease to 25 kt along and west of the front,
then gradually decrease tonight through Thu. These winds are
causing tides of 2 feet above normal from Kotzebue to Barrow. The
strong winds are producing high surf from Cape Espenberg to Point
Hope, and from Point Lay to Wainwright. The surf will fall this
evening as winds decrease. Barrow will see sea tides of 1-2 feet
above normal today, but sea ice offshore should keep high surf
from occuring near Barrow.

&&

.DISCUSSION...
Models initialize fairly well above the surface and show similar
solutions. At the surface at 06Z, all models initialized 4-5 mb
too weak on the low just northeast of Wrangel Island and also
locate the low about 80 nm southeast of the 06Z location. Since
the short wave energy is now phasing in with the surface low,
expect the surface low to remain 3-5 mb deeper than models
indicate , with the low track slightly northwest of the model
tracks today. Result will be a slightly stronger gradient around
the low, but with the low further from the coast, expect winds
similar to what models indicate.

Scatterometer winds at 08Z show mostly small craft winds over the
Chukchi Sea with a small core of gale force winds from Cape
Lisburne northeast. This is similar to what the GFS surface winds
indicate at 09Z. The net result for the Arctic Coast will be winds
similar to what models indicate. Given the GFS winds better
verification at 09Z, will use the GFS winds. Winds will probably
last 1-3 hours longer than models indicate today given that the
low is a bit northwest of model tracks.


Coastal Hazard Potential...
Southwest winds 25-35kt ahead of the cold front with gusts to
45kt from the Bering Strait to Cape Lisburne to Wainwright. Winds
will turn west and decrease to 25 kt along and west of the front
by this afternoon, then gradually decrease tonight through Thu.
These winds are causing tides of 2 feet above normal from Kotzebue
to Barrow. The strong winds are producing high surf from Cape
Espenberg to Point Hope, and from Point Lay to Wainwright. The
surf will fall this evening as winds decrease. Barrow will see sea
tides of 1-2 feet above normal today, but sea ice offshore should
keep high surf from occuring near Barrow.

&&

.FIRE WEATHER...
RH expected to remain above 25% today through Fri. Windy
conditions over the Yukon Flats this afternoon and Thu afternoon
may increase burning there. Expect much warmer and drier
conditions all of the Interior over the weekend.

&&

.HYDROLOGY...
Nothing significant.


&&

.AFG WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
High Surf Advisory for AKZ201-AKZ207.

Small Craft Advisory for PKZ210-PKZ220.

Gale Warning for PKZ225-PKZ230.

Brisk Wind Advisory for PKZ235-PKZ240-PKZ245.
&&

$$

JB JUL 18



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