New Mexico Weather: 10/1/15

In Rio Rancho this morning, it was a little chilly. It is still a little cool a few hours later down in Socorro. The winds have been still and the skies mostly sunny. Here is a photo of the sunrise from Albuquerque, along my morning commute. You can see the light clouds about:

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts a mostly cloudy morning, transitioning to a sunny afternoon and a clear evening. There is no hazardous weather expected today, though there is a Marginal Risk for tomorrow evening and into Saturday.

The visible satellite imagery shows the light clouds over most of the state.

The enhanced infrared satellite imagery shows that none of these clouds are very thick; they all have low, warm tops.

The water vapor satellite imagery shows a long feature that extends through Mexico, but then turns and runs up the east coast of the United States. Directly behind this feature, there is dry air, though there is some moisture return from the north. New Mexico is in the area of some moisture return, particularly in the northeastern corner of the state.

The 12Z upper air sounding from Albuquerque shows an inverted-v type sounding. We have a dry layer from the surface up to the 600 mb level. The surface dewpoint was 45F. However, above 600 mb, the relative humidity increases (and the dewpoint depression drops) due to the moisture return that is shown on the water vapor imagery. Based on this, the precipitable water was 0.74 inches. There was no Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) this morning. The 0-3 km lapse rate was 6.4 C/km.

The deep-layer shear was 36 kts, the low-level shear was 5 kts. The deep-layer shear would be enough to ventilate storms and extend the storm lifetime, but there will be no storms today.

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show no major frontal boundaries, but clear skies and still winds prevail. There may be a dryline that runs just west of Roswell, as the dewpoint drops from 49 F in Roswell to 39 F in Lincoln County.

The surface pressure map shows no steep pressure gradients across the state this morning, and the RAP shows none developing over the next few hours.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows the northern flow along the east coast associated with the feature we see on the water vapor imagery. There is also a shortwave trough over northern Nevada that may help spawn thunderstorms tomorrow in the eastern part of New Mexico.

There was no significant vorticity advection forecasted to impact New Mexico at the 500 mb level.

There is some rising air forecasted in the western part of the state, as shown on the 700 mb chart.

The 850 mb level shows a steep temperature gradient and some Cold Air Advection (CAA) into the eastern part of Colorado. This back door cold front could impact New Mexico tomorrow, but the winds are not blowing across the gradient in New Mexico, yet.

Overall, I expect a pleasant day today, but I will be watching tomorrow’s weather closely.

Thank you for reading my forecast.

The upper air soundings and mesoscale analysis plots are from the Storm Prediction Center website.
The forecasted upper air soundings are from
The surface observation and upper level charts are from Unisys Weather.
The satellite data is from NASA – MSFC


About highplainschasing

This blog is about my tales in storm chasing. My name is Seth Price and I am an instrumentation instructor at New Mexico Tech. My amateur radio call sign is N3MRA.
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