Scientific Forecaster Discussion
Northern Alaska forecast discussion
National Weather Service Fairbanks Alaska
334 am akdt Tuesday Mar 11 2014
Models...good continuity in the short term. Models again
initialized well on the major features. As the pattern changes
become more dynamic later in the week models differ on the
handling of the major shortwave that undercuts the ridge and works
north on Saturday. Will use a mean to eliminate some of the noise
and average out the quantitative precipitation forecast over the area.
Aloft...at 500 hpa...closed 497 dam low over St Lawrence Island
continues to dig south but will become quasi stationary over St
Matthew Island. Ridge continues to build over the state through
Thursday afternoon...then gets undercut by a shortwave that
pushes north up the West Coast. More southerly flow over the area
that will persist through the weekend. At 850 hpa...20 below
celsius isotherm lies from Cape Romanzof to Nome to Point Hope to
Nuiqsut and northeast. The isotherm will lie from Cape Newenham
to Golovin to Point Hope to Point Lay and northeast by Wednesday
morning...then lie north to south from Cape Newenham to Point Hope
by Thursday morning.
Surface...966mb low over Kodiak Island will continue north to the
interior by Wednesday morning as it weakens to 986mb. Associated
frontal system has already pushed north into the interior and will
lie from Nunivak Island to Bettles and east along the Brooks
range this morning...the western part of the front will stall
along the coast with snowfall continuing through tonight mainly
west of Tanana...then tapering off through the day Wednesday. The
next system will be 200nm south of Sand Point Wednesday evening
moving over Kodiak Island by Thursday afternoon at 970mb. Weak
Chinook flow through the Alaska Range will break down today then
redevelop Wednesday night and continue into Friday. Expect that
the next system will be keep most of the snow west of Tanana with
stronger Chinook flow.
Arctic coast...mostly clear but high clouds moving over the area
through the day. Expect temperatures to moderate as warm air is
pushed north. Winds generally northeast at 5 to 15 miles per hour...except on
the northwest coast which will be North East at 10 to 25 miles per hour. Any
snowfall that makes it over the Brooks range will be confined to
areas west of Barrow.
West Coast and western interior...snow began around noon yesterday
in the lower Yukon Delta and looks like they got 4-5 inches of new
snow. Snow continues to be reported in all areas south of
Buckland. Expect that to change this morning as the front
continues to move north and stalls. Winds diminishing through the
day as the low moves north and fills. Remnants of the front slowly
work up the coast through Wednesday evening. The next front will
push to the lower Yukon Delta late Wednesday evening bringing
another 4 to 6 inches of snow to some areas around the Nulato
Hills by Thursday afternoon. With the next low expect another
round of strong winds along and near the coast. Wind chill
issues in the inland zones will go away today as temperatures
moderate and winds diminish...areas near the Bering Strait and St
Lawrence Island will continue to have wind chill issues.
Interior...some clearing through the day...except north of the
Yukon river. Snow will be confined to mainly along the south
slopes of the Brooks range...and even that will diminish this
afternoon. Weak Chinook continues this morning...but expect it to
subside as the day GOES on. Warmer temperatures across the areas
as warm air surges north. Expect temperatures to climb into the
20s and 30s for most areas south of the Yukon river...and maybe
some 40s near the Alaska Range.
Wind Chill Advisory for akz207-akz208-akz217.
Wind Advisory for akz223-akz225-akz226.
Winter Weather Advisory for akz212-akz213-akz214-akz215.
Gale Warning for pkz210.
Brisk Wind Advisory for pkz200-pkz220-pkz225-pkz245.
Sdb Mar 14