Scientific Forecaster Discussion
Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service Albuquerque nm
1142 am MDT Wednesday may 6 2015
18z taf cycle
latest forecast models suggest more convection will develop over
the northwest third to half of New Mexico than previously
indicated due to a weak upper disturbance as well as lingering
moisture. Mts to be occasionally obscured in scattered -shra/-tsra
with brief MVFR cigs/vsbys. Southwesterly wind gusts to around 35kt will be
associated with thunderstorms as well as surface low pressure/Lee trough.
Convection should diminish after 07/02z in general but increasing
instability from the kcvs area southward may result in isolated convection
overnight...and may be far enough east to not affect krow. Enough
low level moisture may also result in local MVFR ceilings after 07/06z along
and west of the Continental Divide.
Previous discussion...1007 am MDT Wednesday may 6 2015...
sending out a quick update to today period forecast to increase
probability of precipitation for some central to southwestern zones. Latest few hrrr runs
as well as the new 12z NAM are depicting quantitative precipitation forecast a bit farther south
through the afternoon. Atmosphere should have sufficiently steep
temperature lapse rates and available moisture to spawn a few
showers and storms around Albuquerque and even some points farther
south/southwest. Latest water vapor imagery also reveals
perturbation aloft over south central Arizona...on a trajectory that
would give Albuquerque and points farther south/southwest
sufficient forcing and lift for shower and storm development. For
the most part...storms should be a garden variety...but some small
hail and gusty winds will certainly be possible.
Previous discussion...318 am MDT Wednesday may 6 2015...
showers and thunderstorms remain possible today across the
northwest third or so of New Mexico. Rainfall amounts will not be
as significant as the last two days...but a little more moisture
is expected. Breezy to windy conditions are also expect to return
areawide. Temperatures will warm 5 to 15 degrees over yesterdays
readings...but most areas will remain below normal for early may.
Even drier conditions are expected for Thursday and Friday...but
will remain breezy. A storm system passing near The Four Corners
on Saturday should bring isolated to scattered showers and
thunderstorms across much of central and western New Mexico. A few
storms may persist on Sunday as well. Temperatures look to remain
at or below normal through the weekend.
much quieter day in store as dry air continues to move into the
southeast half or so of the County Warning Area. Still some lingering moisture
across the northwest and a weak shortwave moving in from Arizona late
today and overnight may allow for isolated-scattered storms to develop. Not
expecting anything as significant as the last two days...but should
provide a little more moisture to the area. Otherwise...with less
cloud cover and precipitation...temperatures should warm 5 to 15 degrees over
yesterdays readings. Breezy to windy conditions will also return
across the eastern plains as a 996 mb low develops over southeast Colorado.
Overnight...we will be watching the dryline slosh back westward. GFS
is the most bullish at breaking out a few storms across
Curry/Roosevelt counties...so have kept some isolated probability of precipitation in the forecast
to account for that.
More dry air will move into nm on Thursday ahead of the next storm
system diving southward over cali. Weak diffluence may allow for a
stray shower or storm to develop over the northern mountains...but
overall will be a quiet but breezy day.
Models still struggling a bit with how far south this storm system
will go. The center of the low as predicted by the GFS is not quite
as far south as last night...but it is in good agreement with the
latest ec and Canadian. Based on these models...the center of the
low looks to track over Arizona...skirt the 4 corners...and move east
over southern Colorado. The NAM through 84 hours suggests a track that
is slightly further south. With the more northerly track...the
dryline may not slosh as far westward Thursday and Friday nights...and
will quickly mix eastward during the days with strong and dry
southwesterly flow mixing to the surface. Thus...limiting the thunderstorm
threat across the far east. The NAM solution would favor the dryline
pushing further west each night and it also continues to advertise a
weak back door front across the far NE moving in Thursday night...which
may be a focus for T-storm development either Thursday night or Friday.
Meanwhile... beneath the cold core of the low/trough...should see
some showers and thunderstorms across western/central areas on Saturday as
the low passes near the 4 corners.
Behind the low...a baggy trough looks to remain over the area Sunday
and Sunday night. Meanwhile...a back door front associated with the
main system will slide down the plains. Thus...a few showers and
storms will remain possible nearly areawide. Monday will be the
transition day. Weak ridging will take shape by early Tuesday...and
winds behind the aforementioned back door front will veer around to
the east and southeast...pulling in some Gulf moisture. Models are
suggesting that the moisture may make it west of the Central Mountain
chain. Should that occur...orographics will play a part in more
storms over the area on Tuesday. If the ec is right...a sharp trough
will also aid bringing up more moisture and resulting in more thunderstorms
no widespread fire weather concerns through the forecast period.
Small areas of marginal critical fire weather conditions are
possible Friday and Saturday...but this current wet period should
help minimize the threat in those areas.
Upper level closed low has lifted northeast into Colorado as a weak short
wave ridge replaces the low. Thus...drier conditions and warmer
temperatures are on tap for today with wetting rain limited to the
northern higher terrain. The surface low currently centered over
central Colorado...combined with a relatively tight gradient aloft...will
produce gusty southwest winds by afternoon favoring higher terrain
and the eastern plains. Highs will be 5 to 15 degrees higher than
Tuesday while minimum relative humidity values drop 20 to 40 percent. Ventilation
will be excellent in all zones. Relative humidity recoveries tonight will be
An upper level low currently over the Pacific northwest will dive
to the south and be centered near central California on Thursday.
The southwest flow aloft ahead of the system will increase over New
Mexico as a fairly strong upper jet strengthens to the south of the
low. Southwest surface flow will usher in some drier air...but
speeds will be not as strong as those today. Ventilation to be
mostly excellent. A few showers and thunderstorms are primarily
favored over the northern high terrain. A storm or two cannot be
ruled out along the Texas border of Curry and Roosevelt counties.
Highs will be similar to today while min relative humidity values will be up to
15 percent lower.
For Friday and Saturday...the upper low will approach New Mexico
with the center near The Four Corners by Saturday afternoon. The
associated jet will move over the state during the day on Saturday.
Gusty southwest winds...strongest over the higher terrain...are
expected Friday with west to southwest winds on Saturday. Critical
thresholds of wind and relative humidity could be met each day for a couple of
hours...mainly in the Rio Grande Valley and east Central Highlands
on Friday...and eastern plains on Saturday. However...the recent
wet conditions combined with below normal temperatures should
minimize the critical fire threat. Also...while high Haines values
are forecast on Friday and Saturday...they do not line up with the
expected locations of critical conditions. Ventilation will remain
generally excellent. The best chances of wetting rain favor west and
north zones on Saturday.
A short wave trough rotating around the main low center to our
northeast Sunday will keep isolated showers and storms in the
forecast for Sunday over the western and northern high terrain.
Warming will be limited to western and central areas while a back
door cold front actually brings some cooling to the east Sunday.
Short wave ridging will build in its wake early next week with high
temperatures Monday and Tuesday look to increase at most locations
although still below normal. A few storms could continue over the
north on Monday while a dry line may move into the east on Tuesday
with potential storms across the eastern plains.