Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Grand Junction, CO

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000 FXUS65 KGJT 021717 AFDGJT Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Grand Junction CO 1017 AM MST Tue Mar 2 2021 .SHORT TERM...(Today through Wednesday) Issued at 525 AM MST Tue Mar 2 2021 Not a cloud in the sky early this morning as high pressure remains in control. Expect plenty of sunshine today with temperatures climbing to near seasonal norms after a chilly start. The mid- level ridge responsible for our recent dry and sunny weather will begin to break down and slowly slide eastward into the Plains tonight into Wednesday. As this occurs, a closed mid-level low will lift northeastward into southern California, which will eventually bring our next opportunity for precipitation. Ahead of this low, increasing southwest flow will usher in warmer air and result in surface temperatures on Wednesday that are several degrees higher than today. In fact, Grand Junction will have a decent shot of recording its first 60-degree day of 2021. Clouds and moisture will then be on the increase late in the day as the mid-level closed low continues to trek northeast into the southern Great Basin. .LONG TERM...(Wednesday night through Monday) Issued at 525 AM MST Tue Mar 2 2021 By Wednesday night, dynamical forcing associated with the closed low will become quite strong as broad difluence coupled with the left exit region of a 125kt upper jet will maximize lift over eastern Utah and western Colorado. Numerous showers will develop in response and gradually build north and east through the night and into the day on Thursday. Given that there is no real cold air source other than what is created dynamically under the cold pool aloft, snow levels look high enough where precipitation in most valleys should fall as either plain rain or perhaps a rain/snow mix. Right now, rainfall amounts don`t look overly impressive and will likely end up a quarter of an inch or less. That being said, it`s been very, very dry the last couple of weeks so we`ll certainly take what we can get. In the mountains, particularly the San Juans, we`re likely looking at an advisory level snow event with 6-12 inches in the forecast. Still a bit early to issue any winter highlights with this package however, and want later shifts to get a look at the latest data before making any decisions. The central mountains (and to a lesser extent the northern mountains) will likely get in on the snow action as well, but snow amounts will be less there, totaling 4-8 inches and 3-6 inches, respectively. With the closed low crossing over the forecast area during the day on Thursday, convection will definitely play a role and result in higher (or even lower) amounts. Regardless, this storm system will be a quick mover and expect most precipitation to wrap up from west to east Thursday night. In the storm`s wake, another large ridge builds into the Great Basin Friday into Saturday. With any lingering clouds giving way to mostly sunny skies on Friday, expect a quick return to unseasonably mild temperatures. This will be even more noticeable on Saturday, with widespread highs in the 50s for the higher valleys, and 60s to near 70 in the lower and desert valleys. A taste of spring for sure! By Sunday, another piece of energy will likely slingshot from California into eastern Utah and western Colorado, bringing another potential shot of precipitation. However, continued to lean on blended guidance given differences in amplitude and timing of the wave. Either way, dry and mild weather likely returns on Monday. && .AVIATION...
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(For the 18Z TAFS through 18Z Wednesday afternoon) Issued at 1016 AM MST Tue Mar 2 2021 Sunny skies continue as high pressure shifts eastward. No aviation concerns noted. VFR for the next 24 hours.
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&& .GJT WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... CO...None. UT...None. && $$ SHORT TERM...MDM LONG TERM...MDM AVIATION...TGR

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