Scientific Forecaster Discussion
Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service Albuquerque nm
449 PM MST Thursday Feb 11 2016
00z taf cycle
upper level ridge from lower Colorado River valley across the Great Basin
to shift eastward to near the Arizona nm state line by end of this forecast
period...00z Sat. Mostly light northwest flow aloft will continue.
Looking at another weak northerly wind shift from NE into east central
nm after 01z. VFR conditions to prevail.
Previous discussion...252 PM MST Thursday Feb 11 2016...
A ridge of high pressure will continue to dominate the weather
pattern over the western U.S. Through Friday. Despite a weak front
moving into eastern New Mexico...temperatures have once again
risen above normal. Some breezy to windy conditions will develop
in central to eastern New Mexico on Saturday with dry weather and
relatively warm temperatures persisting. After a weak disturbance
aloft passes...breezes will slowly relax late on Sunday.
Thereafter another ridge of high pressure will develop west of New
Mexico...leading to a continuation of warmer temperatures with dry
and tranquil conditions.
Omega block with western U.S. Ridge continues to spell warmer than
average temperatures for nm. A weak frontal boundary did pass
through the eastern plains last night...but has only set
temperatures back a few degrees...with all locales still exceeding
climatology for early February. Very few high cirrus clouds have
been able to creep into the state and winds through the
atmospheric column remain light. Expect minimum temperatures to
run perhaps a degree or two warmer than last night...but overall
the persistence trend has been leaned on.
Into Friday...daytime maximum temperatures have been exceeding
guidance in many locales...so forecast has been built with that in
mind. There will be a slight cooling in the east as another weak
surface front slides in from the east northeast...but again above
normal temperatures will be the rule area wide. Into Friday night
the surface winds will veer southerly in the plains...and the
return flow should usher in some relatively higher dewpoints and
potentially some low clouds into the far eastern tier of the
The flow aloft turns more zonal on Saturday as a short wave trough
works into the northern rockies. This will induce a stronger
gradient aloft over nm with higher wind speeds in the 700-500mb
layer. A Lee side surface trough will also take shape...leading to
stronger winds...especially along and to the Lee of the Central
Mountain chain. Downsloping winds will boost temperatures in the
east with a deeply mixed boundary layer.
As the northern rockies short wave trough exits toward the Great
Lakes on Sunday...the flow aloft over nm will return to a
northwesterly one with a trailing wave set to exit Canada on a
trajectory toward the central rockies. This will keep some
relatively stronger wind speeds aloft over nm Sunday...but
gradually decreasing late in the day. The bottom line will be a
continued warmer than normal and dry trend on Sunday.
Another upstream developing ridge aloft will move inland through
the middle of next week...pushing temperatures upwards of 15 to
20 degrees above normal with mostly clear skies. Not until
Thursday does a perturbation move off of the Pacific and break
down the ridge. However...at this time it appears to be only a
wind maker for nm with minimal chances for precipitation by
Thursday of next week.
dry with above average temperatures through at least early next
week. Poor ventilation overall Friday will trend towards some
improvement to good east and south Saturday and into Sunday before
cratering for the western two thirds Monday...and becoming poor most
Upper ridge prevails through Friday then a couple of disturbances
will flatten the ridge a bit...or shunt it westward temporarily.
These both will be dry...although the stronger disturbance
Sunday/Sunday night may have somewhat more clouds associated with it
especially in the northeast...if the European model (ecmwf) is right...but there
looks to be some timing issues between the European model (ecmwf) and GFS...with the
European model (ecmwf) faster. Winds will be the main feature with these
systems...and some gusty northwest Montana top winds not out of the
question Sunday and Sunday night...with the GFS still suggesting
some 40 to 45 knots 700 mb winds forecast for late Sunday/Sunday night.
Otherwise...brief and spotty critical conditions are possible
Saturday afternoon in the east Central Plains.
Some gyrations in maximum relative humidity values Friday night...as return flow brings
some higher dewpoints to the eastern plains east of the Pecos
Valley. However...fair to poor relative humidity recoveries will plague portions of
the western and Central High terrain into the weekend...and as well
as portions of the eastern plains Saturday night. Snow melt may
locally impact humidities and recoveries in the higher terrain
The next opportunity for precipitation may not occur until after the
middle of next week. Little confidence though...with the late next
week system now looking pretty puny and timing issues between the