New Mexico Weather: 12/1/16

Yesterday was cold, mostly sunny and still in Socorro.

This morning, Rio Rancho and Albuquerque have been cold, clear and still.  When I left the house this morning at around 6:30, the thermometer said 18.7 F, 59% humidity, 30.22 in Hg of steady relative pressure, and no wind.

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts a mostly sunny day today, with a high temperature of 48 F.  The winds will be from the north at 5 mph, becoming calm in the afternoon.  This evening will be mostly cloudy, with a low temperature of 29 F.  Winds will be from the east at 5 mph, becoming calm after midnight.

The visible satellite imagery and the enhanced infrared satellite imagery show no cloud cover over the state this morning.  These images have been excluded from today’s post.

The water vapor imagery shows limited, uniform moisture over the state this morning.

The 12Z upper air sounding from Albuquerque shows variable moisture, peaking at 700 mb and then again from 550 mb to 400 mb.  However, with the temperatures so low, there was not much moisture present, even in the more “humid” layers.  There was 0.19 inches of precipitable water in the column this morning.  There was no Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and no Convective Inhibition (CINH) present this morning.  There were several small thermal inversions near the surface.  The 0-3 km average lapse rate was 3.1 C/km.

The hodograph is missing from today’s data.  There are shear values, but there is a lot of missing values, so I am not going to report it today.  I’ll go in to the NWS office for Skywarn Appreciation Day, and perhaps they’ll be able to tell me what is going on with the wind profiles.

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show cool  temperatures, clear skies, low dew points and light, variable winds.  There are no major frontal boundaries present over the state so far this morning.

The surface pressure chart shows that there is some high pressure over the Four Corners area, but no strong pressure gradients across the state this morning.  The RAP shows the high pressure weakening, but no strong gradients developing over the next six hours.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows that a new trough is digging into California by this afternoon.  We will have strong zonal flow, with a slight southwesterly tilt ahead of this trough.

The 500 mb NAM chart shows some weak Positive Vorticity Advection (PVA) ahead of this trough by this evening into the Four Corners area.  With limited moisture, this PVA will result in some clouds, but likely very little precipitation.

The 700 mb NAM chart shows no rapidly-rising air over the state today.  This chart has been excluded from today’s post.

The 850 mb NAM chart shows no strong thermal advection over the state today.  This chart has been excluded from today’s post.

The Precipitation chart shows no precipitation over the state today.  This chart has been excluded from today’s post.

Today will continue to be sunny and cold.  Friday and Friday evening are looking ominous with the approaching trough.  I am also watching for another potential system on Tuesday of next week, opposite an outdoor event I have planned.

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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