New Mexico Weather: 6/20/16

In Rio Rancho this morning, the weather is already warming up, the skies are clear (though there is some smoke) and the winds are still. The backyard weather station says the temperature is 65.7 F, the relative humidity is 49%, the relative pressure is 30.39 in Hg and steady, and the winds are still.

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts another hot day today, with a high temperature of 97 F and an east wind of 5-10 mph, becoming south by this afternoon. This evening will be partly cloudy, with a low temperature of 69 F and will have a 10% chance of showers and thunderstorms in the evenings. Winds will be from the southeast at 5-10 mph. The NWS has issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook concerning the high temperatures again today.

The visible satellite imagery is unavailable at this time.

The enhanced infrared satellite imagery shows no thick clouds over the state this morning and thus has been excluded from today’s imagery.

The water vapor satellite imagery shows a pocket of dry air underneath the upper-level high pressure system. While not directly related to our weather, notice the moisture swirling into a mid-latitude cyclone over the open Atlantic.

The 12Z upper air sounding from Albuquerque shows another damp sounding today, with 0.88 inches of precipitable water present in the column this morning. There is a particularly humid layer around 550 mb as well, and it wouldn’t surprise me to see some clouds at this level by this evening. There was no Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and only a sight thermal inversion near the surface. The 0-3 km average lase rate was 6.2 C/km.

The deep-layer shear was 23 kts, and the low-level shear was 14 kts. The shear was a mix of speed ad directional changes, favoring directional changes in the boundary layer.

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show the clear skies, slightly lower dewpoints (as compared to yesterday), still winds and warm temperatures. There is a dryline running through the eastern third of the state again this morning.

The surface pressure map shows a thermal low over western Arizona, but no strong pressure gradients over the state this morning. The RAP shows that none are expected to develop over the next six hours.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows the upper-level high pressure system expanding northward.

The 500 mb NAM chart shows no significant vorticity advection over the state today. It has been excluded from today’s post.

The 700 mb NAM chart shows rapidly-rising air over the western part of the state. This will be the source region of some of the thunderstorms that form today.

The 850 mb NAM chart shows Cold Air Advection (CAA) through most of the state this evening, which will lead to slightly cooler temperatures tomorrow.

Overall, I expect a hot and sunny day for the most part. However, there is a chance for the skies to cloud up some this evening, given the high humidity, especially at the 550 mb level. There is some rising air to our west as well.

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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