Scientific Forecaster Discussion
Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service Albuquerque nm
542 am MDT Monday Mar 10 2014
12z taf cycle
VFR conditions all areas the next 24 hours. Winds will trend a bit
stronger this afternoon compared to Sunday. Gusts of 25 to 30 kts
will occur from near cqc to Santa Rosa. 40
Previous discussion...325 am MDT Monday Mar 10 2014...
the warmest temperatures of the week are expected today...then
more unsettled weather will be in store for the land of
enchantment. Dry air and strong winds may result in critical fire
weather conditions Tuesday across portions of eastern New Mexico.
Then a strong back door cold front will plunge through the plains
Tuesday night and westward toward Arizona Wednesday morning. Very
strong and gusty winds will accompany the front. Additionally...
light snow and blowing snow is possible across the northeast...
with areas of blowing dust possible elsewhere. Cooler conditions
expected for Wednesday. Then...an upper level disturbance will
cross the state Thursday and Friday resulting in another chance
upper level ridge remains leaned over nm today with abundant dry air
in place. Temperatures will warm another 5 to 15 degrees over yesterdays
readings...resulting in temperatures as much as 20 degrees above normal.
Nonetheless...these temperatures will remain several degrees below record
After today...many changes were made to the forecast package. The
upper level ridge will flatten tonight as the next disturbance
approaches nm. Though clouds may increase across the northwest third...it
looks too dry for any precipitation to squeeze out...so have removed all
probability of precipitation for tonight. However...700 mb winds are still expected to
strengthen...mainly along and just east of the Central Mountain
chain. Could see some mountain wave activity along the sangre Delaware
cristo and Sandia/Manzano Mountains. These winds will quickly mix
down to the surface Tuesday morning with daytime heating. Day shift
will need to look at the possibility of a Wind Advisory in the
vicinity of kcqc and perhaps the high peaks of the mountains as well
for tonight and Tuesday.
Then the front comes. The back door front looks to be a bit slower
than it was at this time yesterday...though still prognosticated to push
through the plains late Tuesday afternoon and evening. Surface pressure gradient
and forecast 3-hour mean sea level pressure change seem sufficiently strong to
warrant a high wind watch over the eastern tier of zones. Would not
be surprised to see a few sites gust upwards of 60 miles per hour. Will also
not be surprised to see somewhat of a haboob sliding down the plains
as well. Thus...have continued mention of bldu in the grids. As the
front pushes westward Tuesday night...it will funnel through the
gaps of the Central Mountain chain and push all the way to the
Arizona border by Wednesday morning.
Have trended back probability of precipitation Tuesday night to focus them more across the
NE...then really scaled back probability of precipitation on Wednesday. With the front
already into Arizona...much of the area will be too stable for any
convective showers. The one exception may be the far west...where
some 10-probability of precipitation remain in play. Some light snow accumulations will be
possible Tuesday night across the northeast...possible resulting in
some slick spots near Raton Pass. Though amounts will be nothing
significant...there will be areas of blowing snow.
While the front and showers are ongoing...the main upper level low
will be retreating westward over Nevada and gaining strength. It
finally gets nudged eastward Thursday...and the low will fill in by
Thursday evening. Contrary to yesterday...most models are now
showing some quantitative precipitation forecast associated with this feature as it scoots across nm
Thursday night and Friday. Still too early to say what locations
would be favored...as models differ on timing and location of the
trough...but northern nm is the best bet at this time. Additionally...
another back door cold front looks to be on tap for Friday...though
this one does not look to be as strong as Tuesday nights front.
North to northwest flow will return for the weekend...with perhaps a
chance for precipitation across the east as a shortwave slides over the state
Saturday night. Should this occur...another strong back door front
may be in store. 34
have decided to issue a Fire Weather Watch for the central mountains
and east Central Plains for Tuesday. Details below.
Exceptionally dry airmass continues over New Mexico...and even
though it will shift south some today...dewpoints and minimum relative humidity
values will be very low...especially over the east. Single digit
humidities will last 5 to 10 hours across the east today with Haines
indices at 5. Winds will increase some today over Sunday but they
will not be strong enough to create widespread critical fire weather
conditions. There will be an hour or two of localized critical
conditions from around Clines Corners to Santa Rosa. Toasty warm
today with highs 10 to 20 degrees above normal. Vent rates generally
good or better aside from pockets of fair to poor rates in the Rio
Grande Valley and San Juan Mountains.
The strong to very strong middle level dry intrusion will continue to
shift south and east ahead of the next Pacific trough tonight into
Tuesday. Winds will increase ahead of the Pacific trough and some
gustier...higher Ridgetop winds will result. Expect moderately
Strong Mountain wave winds to the Lee of the central mountains later
tonight. Humidity forecasts will be somewhat tricky tonight because
of the increased wind flow aloft and exiting dry intrusion. Looking
at poor recoveries lowlands/middle slopes across southern and eastern
Vigorous back door cold front a bit slower on all the models for
Tuesday. It will blast into the northeast during the afternoon
hours. Dewpoints and humidity values will go up behind this front.
Ahead of the front will be northwesterly breezes and dry conditions.
Windy conditions will be found along and to the east of the central
mountains. Up to 8 hours of low humidity and stronger wind flow will
exist across the eastern plains/Estancia valley. Cloud cover doesnt
look to be excessive like past events...at least initially. Temperatures
cool but are still 5 to 10 degrees above normal across the eastern
plains. Haines values have sporadic and changeable...but we could
see some 5 values across portions of the far eastern plains. Given
all these factors have decided to issue a Fire Weather Watch for
zones 107 and 108 for late Tuesday morning through the afternoon.
Will need to keep an eye on the Rio Grande Valley as well...but
duration of critical conditions and lower Haines values should
lessen the risk there.
Models continue to paint a drier solution with the actual Pacific
trough and back door front Tuesday night. Perhaps some measurable
across the northeast...including northern portions of the sangres.
This front means business and will produce strong to high winds
across the far eastern plains Tuesday night. We have issued a high
wind watch for late Friday afternoon through Friday night. Strong
gap winds are expected Tuesday night into Wednesday...especially
Albuquerque southward. The cooler air will overspread the entire
area under the mean easterly flow. Temperatures will be cooler than
normal on Wednesday...up to 25 degrees cooler than Tuesday. Humidity
values will trend up but due to residual low level dryness...still a
dry airmass. Ventilation doesnt look to be too bad due to stronger
The models are in general agreement on the next upstream system for
later in the week. All produce a closed low in the vicinity of Las
Vegas Nevada Thursday...then open it up and bring a trough through nm
Friday. European more bullish with precipitation now...more so than the
GFS now. Expect some shower activity from Thursday afternoon through
Friday but nothing real significant. Could be isolated lightning as
well. Temperatures will warm noticeably Thursday then level off Friday.
Humidity values will be marginally low on Thursday then increase
some on Friday. Ventilation doesnt look to be all that bad most
Another disturbance will be poised to impact nm next weekend as it
comes in from the north. Chj
Fire Weather Watch from Tuesday morning through Tuesday afternoon
for the following zones...nmz107-108.
High wind watch from Tuesday afternoon through late Tuesday night
for the following zones...nmz530-531-534>536.