New Mexico Weather: 1/22/17

Yesterday was cool, breezy and partly cloudy.  We didn’t receive any more rain yesterday here in Rio Rancho.

Currently, it is partly sunny, still and cool.  The backyard weather station says the temperature if 43.7 F, the relative humidity is 43%, the relative pressure is 30.15 in Hg and rising, and the winds are 2.2 mph from the southwest.  Here is a photo looking out my back door at the the light cirrus in the distance:

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts (for Rio Rancho) a mostly sunny day, with  a high temperature of 44 F.  The winds will be from the west at 10 mph.  This evening will be mostly cloudy, with a 20% chance of snow, and a low temperature of 28 F.  The winds will be from the west at  mph, becoming calm after midnight.   The NWS has issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook concerning the potential for winter weather this evening.  They have also issued several Winter Storm Watches for the north central part of the state, as shown in the NWS Watches and Warnings map:

The visible satellite shows some of the cirrus clouds that I can see from my backyard.  Most of the cloud cover is moving in from the northwest.

The enhanced infrared satellite imagery shows that these clouds are not very thick, with low, warm tops.

The water vapor imagery shows nearly-uniform moisture over the state so far this morning.

The 12Z sounding from Albuquerque shows a nearly-saturated layer at 700 mb, but an otherwise dry atmosphere.   Overall, there was 0.21 inches of precipitable water present in the column.  There was no Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and no Convective Inhibition (CINH) present.  There was no thermal inversion, and the 0-3 km average lapse rate was 6.0 C/km.

The hodograph shows that there was 24 kts of low-level shear (mostly directional changes) and 114 kts of deep-layer shear (mostly speed changes) this morning.

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show cool temperatures, low humidity (based on the surface dewpoint depressions), light winds, and clear skies over most of the state.  There are no major frontal boundaries over the state so far this morning.

The surface pressure chart shows a total reversal from yesterday.  High pressure exists over the state, leaving a strong pressure gradient over the north-central part of the state this morning.  The RAP shows that the high pressure and the gradient will decrease over the next six hours.

The Critical Thickness chart  shows that the critical thickness contours are to our north so far today.  They may creep south overnight.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows zonal flow, as we have existed the trough.  There is a strong, long jetstreak that is passing through the middle of the state at this time.

The 500 mb NAM chart shows some moderate Positive Vorticity Advection (PVA) as moderate vorticity moves into the northeastern corner of the state by 00Z.

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 advection over the state today.  This chart has been excluded from today’s post.

The Precipitation chart shows very little chance of precipitation through 00Z.  This chart has been excluded from today’s post.

Today is going to be an interesting day.  The weather outside is decent; enough so for me to want to go for a run, bike ride or do gardening work.  However, the drastic pressure change from 29.58 in Hg to 30.15 in Hg has aggravated my rheumatoid arthritis, so I’m hobbling a bit today.

Based on the NAM, I am not expecting much precipitation today, and I expect the winds to remain light.  I do think that there will be some clouds this evening, and I think that is what I am seeing on the horizon.  It doesn’t take much moisture to produce snow, so that is a possibility, even if it doesn’t feel like it at this time.

Also, there is a High Risk for Severe Weather in the south.  If I get a chance today, I will post about this 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 College of DuPage – SATRAD


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, Radar Imagery, Satellite Imagery, Winter Weather and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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