New Mexico Weather: 2/18/17

Yesterday was mild, still and mostly sunny in Socorro.  The skies started to cloud up by the afternoon.

This morning has been cool, still and mostly cloudy.  Here is a photo from my back door:

In Rio Rancho, my backyard weather station says the temperature is 56 F, the relative humidity is 48% (dewpoint 36 F), the relative pressure is 1012.2 mb and steady, and the winds are 2 mph from the east.

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts (for Rio Rancho) a partly sunny day with a high temperature of 60 F. The winds will be from the south at 5-15 mph.  This evening will be mostly cloudy, with a 20% chance of rain and a low temperature of 38 F.  The winds will be from the southeast at 5-10 mph.  The NWS has issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook concerning rain and mountain snow for the next few days.  They have also issued a Winter Weather Advisory for the southwestern part of the state, as shown in the graphic below:

The visible satellite imagery shows clouds moving in from the west, covering the Albuquerque Metro area and ending at the central mountain chain.

The infrared satellite imagery shows thick clouds moving in from the west.

The water vapor imagery shows that there is deep moisture over much of the state today as moisture streams in ahead of the trough.

The 12Z sounding from Albuquerque shows a damp atmosphere below 250 mb.  Overall, there was 0.39 inches of precipitable water present in the column.  There was no of Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and no Convective Inhibition (CINH) present.  There was a small thermal inversion near the surface, and the 0-3 km average lapse rate was 4.2 C/km.

The hodograph shows that there was 6 kts of low-level shear mostly due to directional changes) and 42 kts of deep-layer shear (mostly due to speed 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 clear skies over most of the state. There are no major frontal boundaries present over the state at this time.

The surface pressure chart shows no strong pressure gradients or systems over the state so far this morning.  The RAP shows no strong pressure gradients developing, though the pressure will drop, statewide, over the next six hours.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows moderate upper-level winds from the south as a new trough approaches from California.

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 a few pockets of rapidly-rising air over New Mexico today.

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

The Precipitation chart shows that precipitation is creeping in from Arizona, and will continue to do so for the next few days.

The weather will change again today, and we may see some overnight precipitation as a strong storm moves into California.  We will have a chance of rain for several days, and the higher elevations may see some snow.  Here in the Albuquerque Metro area, the chances of snow are very slim, as the ground and the air are too warm to support snow, and, unlike last weekend, there is no strong cold front expected.

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 Fire Weather, Local WX, Photography, Practicing Concepts, Predictions, Satellite Imagery and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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