Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Fairbanks, AK

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FXAK69 PAFG 252143 CCA
AFDAFG

Northern Alaska Forecast Discussion...CORRECTED
National Weather Service Fairbanks AK
143 PM AKDT Wed Apr 25 2018

.DISCUSSION...

A active pattern across the state today that will most likely
continue through the weekend. Strong low pressure in the Bering
Sea continue to produce gusty winds to the west and in the Alaska
Range. It is also producing a mix of rain and snow showers from
Tanana west, and it looks like that will continue through the
weekend. There is some clearing in the Interior but expect some
showers to pop up around the area starting Thursday. Some fog
possible in the valleys as breakup continues and warmer air
persists over the snow.

Models...Have been doing a pretty good job with the short term.
Initialized against the surface analysis about 3 mb high, so winds
may be a couple knots higher that current solutions suggest. They
continue the timing struggle with the shortwaves that will be
moving through the area with no concensus. There is better
agreement on the front moving across the state on Saturday.

Aloft...at 500 hpa...Ridging Remains along 77N then southeast
across the Beaufort Sea, and southeast over central Yukon
Territory. A broad area of lower heights around a stacked 509 dam
low over Gambell covers the western 1/2 of mainland Alaska, the
Chukchi Sea, the Bering Sea, and south of the Aleutians over the
North Pacific. Several shortwaves will move north over the West
Coast the next 24 hours, while a stronger shortwave will move to
the Southwest Coast and Bristol Bay Thursday morning, and will lie
from Shishmaref to McGrath to the southern tip of Kodiak Island by
Thursday afternoon, then spits with the northern portion swinging
north to the Arctic Coast by Friday morning, and the southern half
moving south of the Alaska Range. A 516 dam low north of Kamchatka
will swing around the primary low to St Matthew Island Thursday
afternoon, then over the Lower Yukon Delta by Friday morning at
519 dam. As it gets caught up in the flow around the primary low
which remains quasi stationary in the Western Chukchi Sea it will
move into the Central Interior Friday night and troughing will lie
from Kivalina to Tanana to Skagway. The closed low merge with the
primary low by Saturday morning and the trough moves to lie from
Point Hope to Bettles to Eagle. Another wave will approach the
West Coast Friday night. At 850 hpa...Temperatures will remain in
the 0C to -10C range through Saturday. At 925 hpa...Still seeing
some 15 to 25 kt winds so gusts to 40 mph are still possible over
some of the interior summits into Thursday morning.

Surface...A 976 mb low over Gambell will drift north to the
Western Chukchi Sea by Thursday afternoon, and a 995 mb low will
spin out of Siberia to be over St Matthew Island. Troughing over
the Arctic Coast will persist, but weaken on Friday as high
pressure build south over the Eastern Arctic Coast. A bubble high
over the Interior will persist and merge with high pressure
building in from the south Thursday night with a ridging extending
from the high Arctic to the Gulf of Alaska over the AlCan Border.
The lows in the Chukchi Sea and and Eastern Bering Sea will merge
Friday and a 982 mb low will move to the Central Bering Sea at
984 mb, and to Nunivak Island by Saturday morning at 990 mb. The
low then moves north up the coast to the Seward Peninsula by
Saturday afternoon. In the Arctic a 1020 mb high will move south
over the Beaufort Sea Friday night and Saturday. Expect the
pressure gradient to tighten and relax several times through
Saturday with gusty winds developing as it tightens.

North Slope and Brooks Range...Front is working its way offshore
so expect clearing from west to east this evening if it has not
already. Some patchy fog developing overnight, mainly around
Deadhorse will reduce visibility in the morning. Winds swinging
around to east and southeast at 5 to 15 mph. Will remain nice for
through Friday over most of the area, even the Brooks Range which
may see some clouds, and some gusty winds at times.

West Coast and Western Interior...Not much change from yesterday!
Expect not quite as windy, but it will be cloudy, rainy, snowy,
and generally just kinda yucky to continue to the weekend. There
will be some periods of clearing, but for the most part they will
be short lived. Expect a mix of rain and snow depending on the
time of day with mainly snow in the overnight hours, except south
or Norton Sound it will be mainly rain, with rain mixing with snow
overnight. Snowfall amounts will vary widely, and locally. The
higher elevations in the Nulato Hills, Bendeleben mountains, and
Baird mountains will get 2 to 4 inches of new snow, with lesser
amounts at the lower elevations. Temperatures will be cooling
slowly as cold area wraps around the low.

Eastern and Central Interior...Mostly sunny to mostly cloudy. Some
isolated showers may pop up during the afternoons, mainly to the
west of Fairbanks. Expect some patchy fog to pop up as water
starts to slowly open up in the interior. Winds in the Alaska
Range continue to be gusty to 45 mph today, and will settle down a
bit tonight, but expect them to become gusty to 45 mph again
tomorrow as the pressure gradient across the range tightens up
again with leeside troughing redeveloping. No significant
precipitation is expected through Friday. Away from the range
winds will be variable to 10 mph in most areas. Temperatures will
remain springish with high around Fairbanks in the lower 50s, and
lows around 32 for most locations.

&&

Coastal Hazard Potential Days 3 and 4...Potential for some High
Surf around Scammon Bay and Cape Romanzof Friday afternoon and
evening.

&&

.Fire Weather...Near Red Flag conditions continue near the Alaska
Range. Winds continue to gust to around 50 mph this afternoon.
Gusty winds will continue through Thursday with gusts to 45 mph
near the Alaska Range. Winds will be strong and gusty at times
through the weekend. Relative Humidity values will fall through
Friday into the 20s, then rebound some on the weekend into the
30s. High temperatures in the 40s and 50s through the weekend.
Outside the Tanana Valley minimum Relative Humidity values
generally above 30 percent and winds in the valleys 5 to 15 mph.
There is slight chance of thunderstorm activity mainly west of
Fairbanks Thursday and Friday.

&&

Extended forecast for days 4 to 7...A low pressure system moving
across the Bering Sea will spread a mix of snow and rain to the
West Coast Friday night as it moves to the Lower Yukon Delta at
990 mb Saturday morning, and the Seward Peninsula Saturday
afternoon. This will bring showers to interior locations Saturday
afternoon through Sunday morning. Another fairly strong chinook
wind event across the Alaska Range brings south winds gusting 40
to 60 mph to the north slopes and adjacent areas. Expect
temperatures near seasonal normals across the forecast area. In
the Central Interior highs will be in the upper 40s to mid 50s,
with overnight lows around 32.

&&

.HYDROLOGY...Some of the interior river gages are coming online,
but most rivers remain frozen. For the gages available they should
be used with caution as they may be ice affected.

&&

.AFG WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...

Small Craft Advisory for PKZ200-PKZ210.

Heavy Freezing Spray Warning for PKZ210.

Brisk Wind Advisory for PKZ215-PKZ220.

&&

$$

SDB APR 18


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