Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Fairbanks, AK

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FXAK69 PAFG 292222

Northern Alaska Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Fairbanks AK
222 PM AKDT Wed Jun 29 2022

Another smoke filled, hazy afternoon is in store across the
Interior as summer rolls on, with areas of dense smoke lingering
into Thursday. Improving conditions Friday as south winds through
the Alaska Range Passes develop. The heat builds this afternoon
with highs gradually warming over the next several days, with
highs today climbing into the 70s to low 80s and by Friday, many
Interior locations soar into the mid 80s to near 90. Increasing
threats of scattered thunderstorms across the Interior Friday,
producing copious amounts of lightning. Out west, a gradual
warming trend through Thursday before the next front moves in on
Friday. Strong southwest winds will continue along the Chuckchi
Sea Coast into Thursday afternoon.


Upper Levels and Analysis...
The main features at 500 hpa consists of 502 decameter (dam) low
high in the Arctic, a 538 dam low over the Southern Bering, a weak
568 dam low over the Alaska Peninsula, and a ridge pushing into
the Interior. There is a weak shortwave north of the ridge sliding
east across the North Slope and Brooks Range. In general, the
evolution of this pattern will be dominated by upper level ridging
building across the Mainland, causing a warming and drying trend
into Friday while troughing digs south into the Bering. Energy
will break off this trough, eventually moving into the Interior
Friday and Saturday, increasing the thunderstorm threat.

At the surface, a 1020 mb high sits over Norton Sound with a 998
mb low north of Utqiagvik and associated front south into the
Arctic Coast. High pressure builds over the Mainland, with
precipitations chances being confined to thunderstorm development
today and Thursday. A front approaches the Yukon Delta Friday, as
it sweeps across the Bering.

Model Discussion...
The models are in good agreement on the evolution of features on
the synoptic scale over the next several days, with a consensus of
solutions having a ridge building over much of the Mainland,
causing a warmup along with drier conditions. In addition, models
are handling the evolution of south flow aloft, which should usher
in more thunderstorm chances across the Interior along with a
front moving into the Yukon Delta Friday. So, for this afternoon`s
forecast package, we went with a general blend of model solutions,
making minor changes to the inherited grids.

North Slope and Brooks Range...
A front sweeping across the region will bring another afternoon of
strong southwest winds to the Chukchi Sea Coast and precipitation
chances. Conditions improve Thursday as a ridging aloft pushes
north, winds will die down and a return to seasonable weather
comes Friday as weak easterly flow sets up. Temperatures warm the
next few days, with highs today near 50 along the coast and 60s
inland, a few 70s in there near Umiat. By Friday, high climb to
near 60 along the immediate coast and 80s inland.

West Coast and Western Interior...
Relatively quiet weather conditions through Thursday with ridging
building, causing a warming and drying trend. Coastal communities
will warm into the 70s while the Western Interior heats up into
the 80s by Thursday. A front moving across the Bering will move
into the Yukon Delta Friday, this will not only bring increased
chances of precipitation, but a gradual cooling trend Friday into
Saturday. The thunderstorm threat Friday will be confined to the
Western Brooks Range south into the Upper Kobuk and Noatak
Valley, where scattered thunderstorms are possible.

Central and Eastern Interior...
Summer returns with vengeance as temperatures climb into the 80s
today, and where the smoke is not to dense, temperatures will soar
to near 90 by Friday across the Yukon Flats. Isolated to widely
scattered thunderstorms will be relegated to the Alaska Range and
southern Fortymile Country today and Thursday with dry conditions
elsewhere. Attentions shifts to Friday, where a disturbance in
the Gulf of Alaska sends energy north across the Alaska Range and
incites a line of storms over the region with the best chances
along and near higher terrain. Scattered thunderstorms are
possible from the Southeast Interior, near Northway, northwest
across the Middle Tanan Valley to the Upper Koyukuk Valley. We
will continue to monitor this event, stay tuned to the forecast
for future updates. Otherwise, widespread smoke will continue to
be a problem, with bouts of dense smoke plaguing portions of the
Interior causing very poor air quality, but there appears to be
some relief in sight at the tail end of the week as south winds
increase through Alaska Range Passes.

Coastal Hazard Potential for Days 3 and 4...
No concerns at this time.

Extended Forecast for Days 4 through 7...
For the extended period, beginning Saturday, ridging will continue
being the dominate weather feature across the Central and Eastern
Interior north to the North Slope while a trough digs south into
the Bering Sea and across the West Coast. The ridge will keep it
hot and primarily dry, with widespread smoke, over the Interior
and warm across the North Slope while the trough keeps the
precipitation chances confined primarily to the West Coast and
Western Interior. The thunderstorm threat may be rather robust,
especially over the Yukon Flats and Interior mountains for the
weekend. Thereafter, into next week, the ridge slowly weakens as
another deep trough sets up across the Bering, stay tuned...


Hot and dry is the name of the game for the next several days
with highs topping out in the 80s for many locations across the
Mainland to near 90 for the Yukon Flats. In addition, minimum RH
values will gradually decrease into the 20s, with a few places
dipping down into the upper 10s to near 20 across the Yukon Flats
by weeks end. Winds will pick up through Alaska Range passes late
Thursday into Friday as south gap winds increase 20 to 30 mph for
Windy Pass along the Parks Highway, while south winds through
Isabel Pass for the Richardson Highway increase 10 to 20 mph.
Thunderstorm activity will be isolated to widely scattered in
nature over the Fortymile Country and Alaska Range today and
Thursday. Attention shifts to Friday, where a disturbance in the
Gulf of Alaska will send energy north and kick off scattered high
based, in the 6000+ foot range, "wet" thunderstorms over an
increasingly strong thermal low across the Interior. There is some
uncertainty with timing and placement, but this pattern may begin
a more "volatile" thunderstorm pattern for parts of the Interior.
Expect scattered thunderstorms from the Southeast Interior, near
Northway, northwest across the Middle Tanan Valley to the Upper
Koyukuk Valley Friday afternoon into the evening hours. We`ve
issued Fire Weather Watches for this event across the Central and
Eastern Interior, so fire officials and managers should stay
tuned to the forecasts for any future updates.


No concerns at this time for rivers across the Interior, south of
the Brooks Range. There are some concerns on the North Slope, see
the current Special Weather Statement that is out for full details
on Judy Creek and Fish Creek near Nuiqsut.



Fire Weather Watch for AKZ219-AKZ220-AKZ221-AKZ222-AKZ223-

Dense Smoke Advisory for AKZ221-AKZ222.

Small Craft Advisory for PKZ201-PKZ210-PKZ220-PKZ225-PKZ230.

Brisk Wind Advisory for PKZ235.



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