Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Jackson, KY

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FXUS63 KJKL 231155

National Weather Service Jackson KY
755 AM EDT Fri Mar 23 2018

Issued at 755 AM EDT FRI MAR 23 2018

Mid clouds have increased across the lower Ohio Valley this
morning as mid-high clouds continue to stream toward the northeast
out of western Kentucky. Otherwise, expect frost and any lingering
fog to mix out within an hour or two as temperatures warm.


.SHORT TERM...(Today through Saturday)
Issued at 411 AM EDT FRI MAR 23 2018

High pressure will maintain dry weather across eastern Kentucky this
morning and afternoon as clouds steadily increase from the
southwest. This uptick in cloud cover will be stemming from a
shortwave trough and accompanying surface low migrating from the
Great Plains into the Midwest. This will bring precipitation across
the eastern portion of the Commonwealth this evening through
tonight, beginning in the Lake Cumberland region and moving
northeast through the night. While warm enough air should filter in
to keep precipitation of the liquid variety south and west of
roughly a McKee to Harlan line, areas northeast of this line will
see a mix with snow and perhaps some periods of sleet. Not expecting
freezing rain to be an issue given the presence of ice aloft.
However, a tight gradient will likely exist between rain and a mix
with snow/sleet as the recent cold dome holds strong across
northeast Kentucky with the approaching surface low translating
east/southeast through the Ozarks toward the northern reaches of
Tennessee. Exactly where the accompanying warm nose and remnant cold
air reside will play an integral role in where impactful snowfall
amounts occur.

Given recent trends, have opted to hoist a Winter Weather Advisory
from early tonight through early Saturday night for points north and
east of a Mount Sterling to Pikeville line. While storm total
snowfall amounts may reach or slightly exceed 4 inches across
portions of the Bluegrass and Big Sandy regions, the likelihood of
this seems fairly low over a 12 hour timespan early Saturday given
surface temperatures right around the freezing mark. The sun angle
this time of year and the wet nature of this snow should also
prove detrimental to significant accumulations, although a quick
burst early Saturday morning could allow for some rapid
accumulations. Omega profiles are rather stout above the surface
and within the dendritic growth zone, but this latter feature does
look to remain fairly high (above 13-14k feet) atop a
saturated/isothermal layer just below freezing. Would therefore
think that impacts will be more that of advisory level as road
surfaces should see decent meltoff, especially after sunrise. The
greatest of these impacts will be early Saturday morning and again
Saturday evening underneath dark skies. Storm total snow
accumulations should generally range from 1 to 4 inches through a
24 hour period from Friday night through Saturday evening, with
isolated amounts of 4-5 inches in Fleming and perhaps
Bath/Rowan/Elliott Counties. Will assess trends this morning and
afternoon in regard to expansion of the advisory or a necessary
upgrade to a warning. Additionally, may experience a few rumbles
of thunder Saturday afternoon and evening across portions of
southeast Kentucky as elevated instability increases.

.LONG TERM...(Saturday night through Thursday)
Issued at 457 AM EDT FRI MAR 23 2018

The extended period begins with the tail end of the system that
mainly affected the short term period moving through and out of
eastern Kentucky. Most areas will see rain as the dominant precip
type, but areas in the northernmost part of the Commonwealth could
see a rain/snow/sleet mix with the cooler temps Sunday morning.
This system will move out of the CWA by the afternoon/evening and
a period of drier weather will take hold as weak upper level
ridging develops. However, as a surface low pressure tracks from
the west, a warm front will progress to our north Monday into
Tuesday, and with southerly flow, bring in moisture from the Gulf
and increased chances of precip. As the main surface low
progresses eastward, a cold front will move through eastern
Kentucky Wednesday night into Thursday. This looks like to be the
main source of precip for the extended and with temps on the rise,
the main precip type will be rain. However, with this being
towards the end of the forecast period, confidence is low. This is
also because the models are in a fair amount of disagreement with
timing, but moreso with the intensity of the precip. The GFS
Thursday morning ranges from 0.70 to over an inch across eastern
Kentucky. The ECMWF only shows a quarter of an inch at best in
most areas. Overall, the ECMWF shows the center of heaviest QPF
well to our southwest than the GFS. Therefore, will need to
monitor future model runs to assess how this system develops and

Temperatures will warm up after Sunday, with high temps reaching
the 60s by Tuesday. This warm up is maintained until the cold
front moves through later in the week. Lows temps will also warm
from the mid to upper 30s Sunday night to 50s Wednesday night
before the passage of the cold front.


.AVIATION...(For the 12Z TAFS through 12Z Saturday morning)

VFR conditions will continue to rule through this afternoon and
this evening as clouds gradually thicken and lower ahead of an
approaching disturbance. Light rain will begin to impact sites
near SME and LOZ this evening, with snow and some periods of sleet
impacting sites northeast of a McKee to Harlan line. Conditions
will continue to deteriorate overnight with MVFR or worse
ceilings overspreading much of eastern Kentucky by dawn. Snow and
slippery/slushy tarmacs will be most problematic tonight into
Saturday north of a KPBX to KJKL to KLEX line. Winds will largely
remain below 10 knots as they veer from northwesterly today to
east/northeasterly this evening.


Winter Weather Advisory from 2 AM Saturday to 2 AM EDT Sunday
for KYZ044-050>052-060-104-106-107-109-110-119-120.



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