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Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service Saint Louis MO
335 am CST Fri Dec 9 2016

Short term... (through late tonight)
issued at 334 am CST Fri Dec 9 2016

A surface high pressure center will move across the area today. With
such a brisk start to the morning (early morning lows are on track
to be in the teens areawide) and the relatively low sun angle at
this time of year, it will be a struggle for most of the area to see
daytime high temperatures rise above freezing. BUFKIT soundings show
that t92 is around -10 deg c by mid-afternoon which yields highs in
the mid to upper 20s or perhaps very low 30s after accounting for
the strength of the surface high pressure center, and local
conditional climatology charts (light west or north winds in
December with no clouds below 3kft) show a 10 degree diurnal rise
from the early morning low. Both the slightly deeper mixing (between
925hpa and 900hpa) and the strength of the surface high (~1035hpa)
support adding a few degrees onto the default values from the
charts, which yields highs in the upper 20s or perhaps very low 30s.
Winds become calm early tonight then gradually turn southeasterly
after the surface high shifts eastward. Overnight lows are expected
to fall into the teens again.


Long term... (saturday through thursday)
issued at 334 am CST Fri Dec 9 2016

The synoptic pattern at the start of the long term period will
feature swift northwest flow dominating much of the northern Continental U.S..
this regime will generally persist through the period, bringing
continued cold conditions along with a fairly active weather pattern
as a couple systems impact the region.

Saturday may end up as one of the better days in the period. A
quick-moving pv anomaly approaching The Rockies will help induce a
Lee cyclone across eastern Colorado/southeast Wyoming. This will turn the flow
more southerly on Saturday. Despite the southerly flow, increasing
clouds and this fairly cold and dense airmass will only allow
temperatures to warm into the mid and upper 30s.

The main focus of the long term period will be on this low pressure
system as it lifts out into the plains ahead of the approaching pv
anomaly. Overall, dprog/dt plots suggest that guidance has trended
warmer with this system. The NAM continues to remain a cool outlier,
with the GFS/Gem/ECMWF/sref all substantially warmer. With no snow
cover to overcome and a day on Saturday to help scour out this cold
airmass, think the warmer consensus is the way to go at this point.
That being said, still think precipitation could start out as a mix
early Sunday morning as the warm air advection Wing pushes over the
area. In fact, forecast cross-sections are suggesting that
saturation will be fairly shallow initially and only into the -5c
range, suggesting ice crystals are not likely. With surface
temperatures near freezing, this could lead to a brief period of
freezing drizzle at precipitation onset Sunday morning. The best
potential for this would be along/north of I-70. As the day GOES on,
the maturing surface cyclone should push into north-central MO and
southeast Iowa, placing the region firmly in the warm sector and
turning any mixed precipitation into all rain Sunday afternoon into
early Sunday evening. As the cyclone moves out, there could be
enough lingering moisture in the cold air to get some light snow on
the backside, with only a minor accumulation possible across far
northeast MO and west-central Illinois. Bottom line, this does not look
to be a major winter weather producer for our area.

Guidance begins to diverge as we head into the middle of next week.
The latest European model (ecmwf)/GFS solutions are now dry for Tuesday, but the Gem
continues to show a system riding along a strong Arctic front. The
GFS/European model (ecmwf) are slower with bringing an Arctic front through the
region, moving it through on Wednesday with varying amounts of
precipitation along it (euro drier, GFS wetter). Given that
guidance struggles in swift northwest flow regimes like the one we
will see this week, have gone with an ensemble approach which keeps
small pops in Tuesday and Wednesday. There is general agreement
that a very cold airmass will attempt to build in from the north by
the middle and end of next week. Have kept temperatures in the 20s
for highs and in the teens for lows, but these may not be cold
enough if trends continue.



Aviation... (for the 06z tafs through 06z Friday night)
issued at 1055 PM CST Thu Dec 8 2016

Main concern continues to be area of low clouds from eastern Iowa
into IL, or in our northeastern forecast area. Cloud bases
continue to remain in the low-VFR and hi-MVFR range (2500-4000
feet). Cloud level flow shifted more northerly earlier this
evening but now we are expecting this to back heading towards dawn
to a more west-northwest direction which will encourage this cloud area to
finally clear out, but probably will not be entirely realized
until mid to late Friday morning, but effectively from taf sites
near the MS river by sunrise. Should be able to get away with scattered
for coverage as the edge remains near the MS river and the cloud
bases are VFR anyway. Later on Friday, look for mid and high
level cloudiness to increase from the west and largely continue
into Friday night. Otherwise, surface winds from the northwest will
persist overnight and become light and variable on Friday.



Preliminary point temps/pops...
Saint Louis 29 19 36 31 / 0 0 0 10
Quincy 25 16 33 28 / 5 5 10 10
Columbia 28 16 38 30 / 0 0 0 10
Jefferson City 29 17 39 31 / 0 0 0 10
Salem 28 18 34 29 / 0 0 0 10
Farmington 30 17 36 29 / 0 0 0 5


Lsx watches/warnings/advisories...

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