New Mexico Weather: 1/16/17

Yesterday was cool, rainy and still all day.  It was just a generally wet day.

Currently, it is foggy, cool and still.  The backyard weather station (now operational) says the temperature is 35.2 F, the relative humidity is 98%, the relative pressure is 29.94 in Hg and steady, and the winds are still.

I commuted to Magdalena this morning before finishing this post.  It was quite foggy along I-25, but clear as I gained altitude.  Here is a photo from the top of Sedillo Hill in Socorro county, looking over the fog in Socorro.

The mountains in Magdalena are still snow-covered.

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts (for Socorro) a partly cloudy day, with dense fog in the morning, a 20% chance of showers and a high temperature of 53 F.  The winds will be from the west at 5-10 mph, becoming northwest.  This evening will be mostly cloudy, with a 20% chance of rain and a low temperature of 33 F.  The winds will be from the west at 5 mph, becoming calm after midnight.   The NWS has issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook, concerning the tapering off of the winter weather and the dense fog. The NWS Watches and Warnings Graphic shows Winter Storm Warnings on the mountains:

The visible satellite imagery shows that the entire state is under clouds this afternoon.

The enhanced infrared satellite imagery shows that the clouds are thin, with low, warm tops this morning.

The water vapor imagery shows that there is some moisture available, coming from the Pacific.


The 12Z sounding from Albuquerque shows damp sounding below 650 mb this morning.  Overall, there was 0.41 inches of precipitable water present in the column.  There was 1 J/kg of Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and no Convective Inhibition (CINH) present.  There was no thermal inversion near the surface, and the 0-3 km average lapse rate was 5.2 C/km.

The hodograph shows that there was 17 kts of low-level shear (mostly speed changes) and 8 kts of deep-layer shear (a mix of speed and directional changes) this morning.

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show cool temperatures, moderate humidity (based on the surface dewpoint depressions), light winds, and cloudy skies over the entire state this morning.  The skies are clear in the south.

The surface pressure chart shows that the stable air mass we are under today.  There are almost no pressure gradients (hence the light winds) and the RAP shows that none are expected to develop over the next six hours.

The critical thicknesses chart shows that many of the critical thickness contours are far to our north again today.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows southerly flow as the trough passes over the state.

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

The 700 mb NAM chart shows some rapidly-rising air over the west-central part of the state.  This will spawn a few rain and snow showers, depending on the elevation.

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 that the precipitation has tapered off and will continue to do so throughout the day.


I am not expecting much precipitation today in the Socorro and Magdalena area.  The skies have been steadily clearing all morning  and I needed to wear sunglasses for the first time in days, once I got above the fog.

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.
This entry was posted in Local WX, Photography, Practicing Concepts, Predictions, Satellite Imagery, Winter Weather and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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