New Mexico Weather: 3/31/17

Yesterday was a beautiful day; sunny, warm and a little breezy.  The winds picked up in the late evening and were quite gusty.

I only have this photo of New Mexico today, as I am headed to Grand Forks, ND, for a conference today.

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts (for Socorro) a partly sunny day, with a 20% chance of isolated showers and thunderstorms, and a high temperature of 62 F. The winds will be from the south at 10-15 mph, becoming southwest at 20-25 mph in the afternoon.  This evening will be mostly cloudy, with a low temperature of 36 F.   Winds will be from the west at 10-15 mph, becoming north after midnight.

The NWS in Albuquerque forecasts (for Magdalena) a mostly sunny day, with a high temperature of 57 F. The winds will be from the southwest at 25-30 mph.. The winds will be from the southwest at 25-30 mph.  This evening will be mostly cloudy, with a low temperature of 31 F.  The winds will be from the southwest at 15-20 mph, gusting to 30 mph, and becoming west at 10-15 mph after midnight.

The NWS in Albuquerque forecasts (for Rio Rancho) a mostly sunny day, with a 20% chance of isolated showers and thunderstorms, and a high temperature of 61 F. The winds will be from the south at 10-15 mph, becoming southwest, becoming 20-25 mph.  This evening will be mostly cloudy, with a low temperature of 34 F.  The winds will be from the west at 10-15 mph, decreasing to 5-10 mph after midnight.

The NWS has issued a Red Flag Warning for the central part of the state, as well as some high wind advisories and Hazardous Weather Outlooks concerning the fire weather that will occur tomorrow.  The NWS Watches and Warnings Graphic is shown below:

The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has issued an Elevated Fire Risk for most of the state, and Critical Risk and Extremely Critical Risk for the southeastern corner.

The visible satellite imagery is unavailable at this time.

The infrared satellite imagery shows that there are a few thick clouds this morning in the northern tier of counties.

The water vapor imagery shows the next trough pushing through Arizona and into the state this morning.  There is some upper-level moisture associated with this trough.

The 12Z sounding from Albuquerque shows a dry atmosphere again today, though there is a moisture peak near 550 mb.  There was 0.20 inches of precipitable water present in the column this morning.  There was no of Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and no of Convective Inhibition (CINH) present.  There was no thermal inversion near the surface, and the 0-3 km average lapse rate was 7.9 C/km.

The hodograph shows that there was 12 kts of low-level shear (due mostly to directional changes) and 67 kts of deep-layer shear (due to a mix of speed and directional changes).

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show mild temperatures, low humidity (based on the surface dewpoint depressions) and sunny skies dominate the map this morning.  The winds are light and variable, and no major frontal boundaries are present over the state so far this morning.

The surface pressure chart shows a deep low pressure system over New Mexico.  This low pressure system has produced a strong pressure gradient across the state this morning.  The RAP shows that the low will deepen and the pressure gradient will intensify over the net six hours, increasing our fire risk.

The Fosberg Index shows the Fire Weather threat today,

…as does the  Middle Altitude Haines Index:

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows the deep trough moving over the state today.  A moderate jetstreak will pass over the state as well.

The 500 mb NAM chart shows some strong Positive Vorticity Advection (PVA) ahead of the trough.  The winds do not blow directly across the gradient, but the vorticity that is moving is strong.

The 700 mb NAM at 00 Z shows some pockets of rapidly-rising air, though they are often over the same areas that featured rapidly-sinking air at 18 Z.   This is more an indication of the strong winds than actual convection.

The 850 mb NAM chart shows some Warm Air Advection (WAA) into northern New Mexico and some Cold Air Advection (CAA) moving into the western border of the state. This is typical for a mid-latitude cyclone.

The Precipitation chart shows that there is a small threat of precipitation in the northwestern corner of the state.

Today will be quite windy, judging by the pressure chart.  The windy, dry conditions will seriously increase the fire weather threat today, so hang on tight, and keep sparks and fires to a minimum.

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 TwisterData.com.
The surface observation and upper level charts are from Unisys Weather.
The satellite data is from College of DuPage – SATRAD

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

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