Central New Mexico Weather: 2/21/18

Yesterday was cool, mostly cloudy and a little breezy.  It snowed until the mid-afternoon in Magdalena.

This morning has mostly cloudy, cold and still.

The NWS in Albuquerque, NM, forecasts (for Rio Rancho, NM) a partly sunny day, with a 20% chance of showers, and a high temperature of 49 F.  The winds will be from the northeast at 10-15 mph, becoming south after midnight.  This evening will be mostly cloudy, with a 20% chance of rain showers becoming snow showers, and a low temperature of 30 F.  The winds will be from the southeast at 5-10 mph.

The NWS in Albuquerque, NM, forecasts (for Socorro, NM) a a partly sunny day, with a high temperature of 52 F.  The winds will be from the north at 5-10 mph, becoming south at 15-20 mph, and gusting as high as 30 mph in the afternoon.   This evening will be mostly cloudy, with a low temperature of 31 F.  The winds will be from the south at 10-20 mph.

The NWS in Albuquerque, NM, forecasts (for Magdalena, NM) a partly sunny day, with a high temperature of 44 F.  The winds will be from the southwest at 5-10 mph, becoming south at 15-20 mph in the afternoon.   This evening will be mostly cloudy, with a low temperature of 26 F.  The winds will be from the south at 10-15 mph.

The NWS in Albuquerque has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for an area in the northwestern part of the state.  There is also a Hazardous Weather Outlook for the potential for snow throughout much of the state this evening.  The NWS Watches and Warnings graphic is shown below:

The visible satellite image is unavailable at this time.

The infrared satellite image shows thin clouds with low, warm tops over most of the state.  They are barely visible in this image.

The enhanced low-level water vapor satellite imagery shows adequate moisture for cloud cover and some precipitation over most of the state this morning.  There is more moisture to our northwest as well.

The 12Z upper air sounding from Albuquerque shows nearly-saturated layer between 700 mb and 650 mb.   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).  The Lifted Condensation Level (LCL) was 995 m.  There was no thermal inversion, and the 0-3 km average lapse rate was 5.2 C/km.

The hodograph shows that there was 16 kts low-level shear (due mostly to directional changes) and 79 kts deep-layer shear (due mostly to speed changes).

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show cool temperatures and moderate humidity (based on the surface dewpoint depressions).  The skies are clear over most of the state (according to the sensors), and the winds are light and variable so far this morning.

The surface pressure chart shows high pressure over the Great Plains, and a slight pressure gradient through New Mexico.  The RAP shows that the high pressure and the gradient are expected to persist for at least the next six hours.

The HRRR simulated reflectivity shows scattered precipitation this evening and into the early morning hours tomorrow, particularly in the northern tier of counties.

The HRRR has the high temperatures for the Rio Grande River Valley will peak around 23 Z, reaching into the mid-50’s.

The HRRR shows strong winds are not likely, and this chart has been excluded from today’s post.  However, the pressure gradient will lead to breezy conditions, and it wouldn’t surprise me if the HRRR is not fully accounting for this.  I think the NWS is predicting breezy conditions with a few stronger gusts as well, even though the HRRR isn’t showing it.

The HRRR shows that the skies will clear through the morning.  However, this evening, clouds will move in from the northwest, dropping some precipitation.

The HRRR shows some snow accumulation over the northern and western parts of the state.  Heaviest snowfall will be near the Colorado border.

Today will be partly sunny, but warmer and breezier than yesterday.  This evening, the skies will cloud up, and there will be scattered rain and snow showers, particularly in the northern part of the state.

Thank you for reading my post.

Sources:
The forecasts from the National Weather Service are from The NWS Homepage
The upper air soundings and mesoscale analysis plots are from the Storm Prediction Center website.
The satellite data, model data, and forecasted soundings are 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, Practicing Concepts, Predictions, Satellite Imagery, Winter Weather and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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