Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Fairbanks, AK

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000
FXAK69 PAFG 251240
AFDAFG

Northern Alaska Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Fairbanks AK
440 AM AKDT Sun Oct 25 2020

.SYNOPSIS...
Weather challenges remain snow amounts and where the heaviest snowfall
will occur with a strong winter storm that will move into the Eastern
Alaska Range as well as the Southeastern Interior and Southern
Portions of the Central Interior Sunday night and through the day
Monday. Snow and blowing snow will make travel difficult especially
over interior Highway Summits where near whiteout conditions are
expected to develop Sunday night and Monday. Much colder temperatures
will pour into Northern Alaska through the week with high temperatures
at Fairbanks struggling to reach the low teens and low temperatures
dropping below zero by the end of the week.

&&

.DISCUSSION...
Aloft at 500 mb a high amplitude ridge remains over Eastern
Alaska and Western Canada and a deep trough remains over the
Eastern Bering Sea and Western Alaska. A 535 DM low pressure
system anchors the trough over Western Alaska and will phase with
energy moving rapidly north and east along the back of the ridge
and will deepen as the upper level low pushes east on Monday. A
weak ridge builds eastward over Western Alaska on Tuesday and
moves rapidly eastward as a strong trough pushes south and east
over the North Slope Tuesday night and over the Interior
Wednesday. 850 mb temperatures will plummet from around 2 below
Monday morning over Fairbanks to around 8 below Tuesday morning
and will continue to drop to around 12 below Wednesday morning.
850 mb temperatures drop to around 15 below by Thursday and will
continue to drop to around 18 below by the weekend. 850 mb
temperatures along the ALCAN are expected to drop to around 20
below by the weekend. The cold temperatures aloft will in turn
produce well below normal temperatures at the surface, however
skies will be slow to clear out toward the end of the week and
into the weekend. Locations that clear out will likely have low
temperatures drop below zero. Coldest locations in the Fortymile
Country will likely see some low temperatures in the teens below
or colder.

On the surface a 1005 mb low pressure system currently located
near Nunivak Island will weaken and push east today and will merge
with a rapidly deepening low pressure system that is moving
northeast out of the Northern Pacific. The lows will merge
approximately 150 nm southeast of Sand Point as a 992 mb low this
afternoon. The now merged low will continue to deepen tonight
passing over Kodiak Island as a 982 mb low tonight and making
landfall in Prince William Sound as a 978 mb low on Monday
Morning. A strong front rotating around this low will move into
the Eastern Alaska Range and Southeastern Interior this evening
and into the southern portions of the Interior late tonight and
Monday morning. Heavy snow is expected to develop over the Upper
Tanana Valley and Fortymile country this evening. A Winter Storm
Warning has been issued for these areas. Snow, heavy at times is
expected to develop overnight over much of the southern portions
of the Central Interior mainly south of the Yukon River with
Winter Weather Advisories issued for the Eastern and Central
Alaska Range where 6 to 10 inches of snow is expected to fall
through Tuesday and for zones 221, 222, and 223 including the
Fairbanks area where 4 to 7 inches of snow is expected to fall
through late Monday and early Tuesday. Strong and gusty winds are
expected to develop over the higher terrain of the Interior
especially to the north and east of Fairbanks. Expect significant
blowing and drifting snow to develop over the Steese and Elliot
Highway Summits especially over timberline late tonight and on
Monday. The surface low pressure system after making landfall in
Prince William Sound will move east into the Southern Yukon Monday
night and Tuesday. The front that pushes into the southern
Interior Sunday night and Monday will retreat quickly to the south
and east on Tuesday with snowfall rapidly diminishing over the
Central and Eastern Interior.

The first in a series of fronts from the high arctic pushes south
and east onto the Western North Slope Coast Tuesday morning and
will bring much colder airmass over Northern Alaska and a round
of persistent northwest winds to the western North Slope Coast. A
second front approaches the coast on Thursday morning bringing
another reinforcing shot of cold air to the state and another
round of northwest winds to the western North Slope Coast. A third
shot approaches on Saturday as a low pressure system pushes on
shore near Wainwright. The strongest northwest winds with this
system appear to push into Kotzebue Sound on Friday night. Will
need to monitor the Western North Slope Coast and Kotzebue Sound
as well as the northern coast of the Seward Peninsula particularly
Shishmaref for elevated water levels as there is minimal ice to
protect west and north facing coastlines from Point Barrow to the
Bering Strait.

Coastal Hazard Potential Days 3 and 4... The first in a series of
fronts from the high arctic pushes south and east onto the
Western North Slope Coast Tuesday morning and will bring much
colder airmass over Northern Alaska and a round of persistent
northwest winds to the western North Slope Coast. A second front
approaches the coast on Thursday morning bringing another
reinforcing shot of cold air to the state and another round of
northwest winds to the Western North Slope Coast. A third shot
approaches on Saturday as a low pressure system pushes on shore
near Wainwright. The strongest northwest winds with this system
appear to push into Kotzebue Sound on Friday night. Will need to
monitor the Western North Slope Coast and Kotzebue Sound as well
as the northern coast of the Seward Peninsula particularly
Shishmaref for elevated water levels as there is minimal ice to
protect west and north facing coastlines from Point Barrow to the
Bering Strait.

&&

.AFG WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
Winter Storm Watch for AKZ222-AKZ223.

Winter Storm Warning for AKZ224.

Winter Weather Advisory for AKZ226.

Heavy Freezing Spray Warning for PKZ240.
&&

$$

CCC OCT 20



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