Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Amarillo, TX

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FXUS64 KAMA 211651

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Amarillo TX
1151 AM CDT Wed Mar 21 2018

18Z TAF Cycle

VFR conditions will prevail at all three TAF sites through 18Z
Thursday. Southeast to south winds 5 to 15 knots will become
southwest to west 5 to 15 knots after 08Z to 11Z Thursday at all
three TAF sites.



.PREV DISCUSSION... /Issued 601 AM CDT Wed Mar 21 2018/

For the 12z TAFs...
Apart from low-level wind shear for the first few hours of the
forecast, good flying weather anticipated for the next 24 hours.
Low-level jet currently being sampled by KAMA 88D characterized by
southeast winds above 40 kt just off the surface.  May see a few
gusts around 25 kt as inversion breaks.  Otherwise, southeast and
south surface winds expected through the day and this evening.
No clouds below 10,000 feet expected.  No visibility restrictions


PREV DISCUSSION... /Issued 332 AM CDT Wed Mar 21 2018/

Let`s see...its hard to keep track of weather in other parts of
the country, like the Northeast United States for example, which
parts are now experiencing their fourth winter storm in the month
of March with measurable snowfall and precipitation. Meanwhile
some areas in the Panhandles still have still not seen any
measurable precipitation since mid October. This stubborn pattern
of dry weather may actually finally change in our favor for some
precipitation next week. But first, we have to get through some
above normal heat and fire weather potential first.

Going into today and Thursday, tranquil weather conditions is
expected across the region. A broad surface high will be
developing near the Ark-La-Tex region this afternoon in-
conjunction with a lee trough developing over eastern New Mexico.
This will cause a local height gradient, especially across the
eastern Panhandles where some gusty southeast winds are possible.
Surface winds will then shift from southeasterly to more
southwesterly by Thursday. As a result, high temps today will
range from mid 60s to lower 70s while Thursday`s high will be much
warmer ranging from upper 70s to mid 80s.

Fire weather conditions return to the region on Friday. A 110 kt
jet streak in the Four Corners region is providing good dynamics
for surface low pressure development. Latest 21/00Z model and
numerical data are in accord of a surface low developing over SE
Colorado and its deepening SB trough over eastern New mexico and
the western Panhandles by Friday afternoon. Gusty southwest winds
will develop in the afternoon and as a result of downsloping with
H850 WAA into the region, went above guidance and forecasted high
temps ranging from mid and upper 80s in the central and western
Panhandles to lower 90s across the eastern Panhandles. As the main
surface low pressure over SE Colorado moves east into Kansas, a
trailing cold front will cool the region back into the upper 70s
and lower 80s for the weekend.

Precipitation...yes precipitation is now in the long term
forecast. As always with the forecast several days out, things can
change and will continue to be monitored. As of the 21/00Z
forecast package, latest height anomaly ensemble members are
finally hinting at the decomposition of the central Canadian ridge
which is one contributor to the long dry streak our region has
been experiencing. As a result, some of the long term guidance has
been hinting at a upper level low over the northwest CONUS
coastline moving SE toward Las Vegas, NV by Monday evening. In-
conjunction with the 500 hPa low developing, a deepening 250 hPa
jet streak is also present rounding out the upper level low
pressure system which should help the system to further develop.
As a result, this southern stream jet is helping to bring
favorable jet dynamics downstream over the Panhandles starting on
Tuesday. Along with a south-southeasterly wind bringing some
moisture from the Gulf into the region, especially across the
east, some thunderstorms are possible Tuesday and Wednesday,
especially Tuesday afternoon as a cold front is forecasted to
move south across the region. Some more steady precipitation is
also possible going into late next week as the main upper level
low moves closer to our region, but confidence is too low to
include at this time. High temperatures Monday will be above
average before dropping to near average behind the front Tuesday
and Wednesday.


A brief lull in the fire weather can be expected at this time
through Thursday. Going into the day on Friday, elevated to
critical fire weather is expected for the entire combined
Panhandles region as a surface low develops over SE CO/NE NM.
With downsloping gusty SW winds advecting very warm temperatures
into the region, along with upper level convergence bringing added
favorable upper level dynamics for descent in the column, this
should help dry out the region with min RH values forecasted in
the 10-15% range. 20 ft. winds by the afternoon hours, especially
in the western Panhandles should be sustained out of the SW
between 25-30 kts with higher gusts possible.

Elevated to critical fire weather conditions are again possible,
especially in the western Panhandles on Sunday.



.AMA Watches/Warnings/Advisories...



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