New Mexico Weather: 10/13/16

Yesterday was a pleasant day, with only a light breeze and mostly sunny skies.  There were some clouds on my commute back from Socorro to Rio Rancho, but no precipitation

In Rio Rancho this morning, the weather has been cool, still and mostly clear.  To the southeast, there is a mix of clouds, mostly altocumulus and cumulus.

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts a sunny day today, with a high temperature of 80 F.  The winds will be from the north at 5-10 mph, shifting southeast by the afternoon.  This evening will be clear and a low temperature of 50 F.  Winds will be from the southeast at 5-10 mph, becoming northwest after midnight.

The visible satellite imagery shows a few clouds across the eastern part of the state.  Albuquerque is at the western edge of these clouds.

The enhanced infrared satellite imagery shows that most of the clouds are thin, with low, warm tops, but there are a few taller cells along this boundary.

The water vapor imagery shows that moisture bunched up along the frontal boundary, but it is not completely scouring the moisture away.

The 12Z upper air sounding from Albuquerque shows that the atmosphere has moderate, well-mixed moisture this morning..  There was 0.46 inches of precipitable water present in the column.  There was no Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and no Convective Inhibition (CINH) present this morning.  There was a large thermal inversion near the surface, and the 0-3 km average lapse rate was 5.4 C/km.

The deep-layer shear was 49 kts, and the low-level shear was 6 kts.  Deep-layer shear was due largely to speed changes and low-level shear was due largely to directional changes.

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show light winds, cool temperatures, low surface humidity, and clear skies over most of the state this morning.  The radar overlay shows that there is some precipitation over the eastern part of the state this morning.

The surface pressure map shows some higher pressure over the Colorado Plateau, and no strong pressure gradients over the state so far this morning.  The RAP shows the pressure balancing out over the next six hours, decreasing the slight pressure gradient over the western part of the state.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows northerly flow over the state as we the small shortwave trough exits the state this evening.

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

The 700 mb NAM chart shows very little rapidly-rising air over the state today.  This chart has been excluded from today’s post.

The 850 mb NAM chart shows that the backdoor cold front’s advance into the state may slow down by this evening.  Air is still chilly and will infiltrate up to the central mountain chain, but seems to be struggling to surge farther west.

The Precipitation chart shows very little chance of precipitation this afternoon.  There is a chance of rain along the very eastern edge of the state today.

I expect today to remain sunny and clear throughout most of the state.  The cold front seems to have stalled at the central mountain chain, according to the NAM.  The NWS seems to agree with this statement, based on the forecasted temperatures in the Rio Grande River Valley over the next few days.

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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