Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Pueblo, CO

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137
FXUS65 KPUB 200220
AFDPUB

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Pueblo CO
820 PM MDT Thu Apr 19 2018

.UPDATE...
Issued at 813 PM MDT Thu Apr 19 2018

Southerly winds will continue to bring increasing moisture to
southern Colorado with humidity levels expected to climb above
20 percent across much of the area by 9 PM. Have let the Red
Flag warning expire at 8 PM. Still looking at showers spreading
into the Continental Divide region overnight and translating
eastward into the southeast mountains and plains Friday morning.
00Z Nam run is coming in now an appears to maintain a more
northward storm track. Still looks like mountains and Pikes Peak
region could see some wetting precipitation from the event...and
far southeast plains east of KLHX should pick up some good
rainfall amounts. However southern I-25 corridor from Pueblo
southward continues to trend towards a drier solution. Current
grids have already leaned this direction so will hold the course
as we wait for more 00z model runs to arrive. -KT

&&

.SHORT TERM...(This evening through Friday)
Issued at 242 PM MDT Thu Apr 19 2018

...Pacific storm to bring beneficial precip to a good part of the
   region...

Currently...

Breezy conditions were occurring over most of the region at 2 pm.
Most of the plains were windy along with the San Luis Valley. Winds
were typically 20 to 30 mph with gusts to 40 mph. The least windy
areas were across the greater Fremont county area and western Pueblo
county.

RH values were typically in the 10-20 percent range most of the
plains and valleys, and a few areas were reaching Red Flag criteria.

Generally mostly sunny skies prevailed across the region although
cirrus was starting to thicken up across the region. Temperatures
were noticeably warmer this afternoon as compared to yesterday with
temp readings on the lower elevations ranging from the 50s in El
Paso county to around 70 in La Junta.  In the valleys, temps were
generally in the mid 50s to mid 60s.

On the larger scale, an impressive closed mid level circulation was
over the Lake Tahoe region and it was progressing east.

Rest of today...

Main concern will be red flag conditions occurring across most of
the region. Although winds will definitely reach criteria. Humidity
values will likely be marginal most areas. Nonetheless, the strong
southerly winds would rapidly push any fire quickly northward if a
fire would start.

Tonight...

Winds will keep up everywhere tonight. The combination of the
incoming storm moving towards the region, along with the high
pressures system to our east will keep a tight pressure gradient
over the region, and south to southeast winds of 10 to 20 mph with
gusts to 30 mph will prevail through the nighttime hours most
regions. Similar to this afternoon, the least windy area will occur
over the greater Fremont county region.

Precip will develop over the contdvd later this evening and ramp up
as the nighttime hours progress. This precip will be associated with
a well defined short wave within the closed circulation advecting
around the closed mid level low. Models have been indicating some
heavy snow over the San Juan region and would not be surprised if 6"
or more of snow (along with some thunder) accumulates before sunrise
across the sw mtns. As the nighttime progresses, the band of precip
will progress east and all of the mtns along with the valleys will
likely see rain/snow.

With all of the clouds moving in this evening, min temps tonight
will be mild , with 30s and 40s plains and 30s valleys. 20s will be
in the mtns. Most of the accumulating snow tonight will fall at
relatively higher elevations (above 9500 feet).

Tomorrow...

Short wave will be on the se periphery of the closed circulation by
12 UTC tomorrow. The band of precip with this feature will be over
the southern mtns. As the shortwave moves east, it will encounter
relatively drier air along the I-25 corridor and most of the precip
will diminish as it moves just east of the mtns. However, better
instability is located over the far eastern plains, and as the
shortwave moves east, a line of shower (and possibly some isold
thunder) will develop and intensify as it moves over the far eastern
plains during the late morning and afternoon time periods. Areas
from Pueblo south may see little (if any) significant precip
early tomorrow with this first wave.

By later tomorrow afternoon, guidance is showing a better chance of
precip over the I-25 corridor, especially from Colorado City north
to the Palmer Divide and northward. The overall best chance of
thunder on the plains will be over the I-25 corridor tomorrow
afternoon. SPC has thunder over most of our area tomorrow. Given the
warm air aloft, no strong thunder is likely.

Overall, through the next 24 hours, 5 to 10 inches of new snow will
occur over the mtns, and a variety of winter weather highlights have
been issued for the higher elevations.

.LONG TERM...(Friday night through Thursday)
Issued at 242 PM MDT Thu Apr 19 2018

Ensembles and operational solutions remain in good agreement
through Monday, with differences beyond. Confidence is high
through the weekend with the forecast, with lower confidence into
next week.

Friday night through Saturday...a slow moving broad upper level
low will move out of southern Colorado and into Oklahoma through
Saturday. Friday night looks active across the region, with
periods of moderate to heavy snowfall along the Continental
Divide. Snow levels will remain high Friday night before lowering
by Saturday morning to the Palmer Divide. Across the Plains, most
model solutions have come in drier. Expect showers and perhaps a
few thunderstorms across the far Eastern Plains Friday evening,
with activity shifting east into western Kansas overnight. A cold
front will drop south around a surface low through the overnight
hours with northerly flow developing through Saturday morning.
This northerly flow will likely limit the amount of rainfall that
falls across the Plains late Friday night through much of the day
on Saturday. Expect precipitation to come to an end across much of
the area by late Saturday afternoon into the evening hours as the
upper level low drifts off to the southeast. As for snow totals,
the Central Mountains and higher peaks of the Northern Sangre de
Cristo along with Pikes Peak will see 8 to 12 inches with locally
higher amounts. For the rest of the mountains, generally 2 to 6
inches with locally higher amounts can be expected through
Saturday afternoon.

Sunday through Tuesday...high pressure will build across the
region with more zonal flow developing into early next week. This
will allow temperatures to warm through the 60s to 70s by Monday.
Models are develop weak instability over the mountains Monday into
Tuesday which may lead to a few showers and possibly a
thunderstorm or two. A storm system passing to the north will
likely send a cold front south across the Plains by Tuesday, with
slightly cooler temperatures expected for highs.

Wednesday and Thursday...model differences arise by midweek. The
GFS remains active over the mountains, with light precipitation
spread east across the Plains both days. The ECMWF builds an upper
ridge across the area with drier conditions forecast for southern
Colorado.  Mozley

&&

.AVIATION...(For the 00Z TAFS through 00Z Friday evening)
Issued at 242 PM MDT Thu Apr 19 2018

Windy conditions will occur through the next 24 hours at each of the
taf sites. Rain and snow showers will be likely at KALS, especially
tomorrow morning, and a period of IFR/MVFR is likely at KALS. KCOS
will likely see rain showers and lower cigs by late tomorrow morning
and will last through the day. KPUB should remain VFR. although brief
MVFR may occur at KPUB late tomorrow afternoon. Cannot rule out a
rumble of thunder at the TAF sites during the next 24 hours.


&&

.PUB WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
Winter Storm Warning from midnight tonight to 3 PM MDT Saturday
for COZ058-060-073-082.

Winter Weather Advisory from midnight tonight to 3 PM MDT
Saturday for COZ066-068-072-074>076-080-081.

&&

$$

UPDATE...KT
SHORT TERM...HODANISH
LONG TERM...MOZLEY
AVIATION...HODANISH



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