Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Midland/Odessa, TX

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494
FXUS64 KMAF 041735
AFDMAF

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MIDLAND/ODESSA TX
1135 AM CST Wed Mar 4 2015

.DISCUSSION...
See 18Z aviation discussion below.

&&

.AVIATION...
A cold front is moving through the area bringing increasing
northeasterly winds, colder temperatures, and lowering CIG/VIS.
VFR conditions have already or will soon decrease to LIFR at all
TAF sites. Light rain near HOB, CNM, and INK will move east and
decreasing temperatures will change the precip from rain to
freezing rain, sleet, and snow 21-03Z. Light snow will then
continue 03-12Z before ending. Some improvement in CIG/VIS can be
expected after 12Z.

Hennig

&&

.PREV DISCUSSION... /ISSUED 505 AM CST Wed Mar 4 2015/

DISCUSSION...

Another arctic cold front, and the potential for wintry
precipitation behind it, are making for a difficult forecast this
morning.  Currently, the front is located from east central New
Mexico, east/southeastward across the Texas Panhandle.  Meanwhile,
an ua trough was translating eastward over northern Mexico.  Expect
showers will continue to develop ahead of the upper system, with
perhaps a few lightning strikes from southwest Texas across the
Lower Trans Pecos through the day.  Think precipitation will remain
all liquid over the forecast area through 04/18Z despite the frontal
boundary pushing into the southeast New Mexico Plains, and Permian
Basin by then.  Winds behind the front will be at least 20 mph
sustained, and with gusts around 30 mph at times, wind chills will
likely drop into the teens.  After 04/18Z, we could see a mix of
freezing rain and sleet from SE NM, eastward across the northern
Permian Basin and western Low Rolling Plains by early afternoon,
with this mix extending into the central Permian Basin by 05/00Z.
Although ice accumulations will be limited to one tenth of an inch
or less, icy roads could develop in these areas before nightfall.
Since the low level warm layer will not be as pronounced further
west over the rest of SE NM and over the Guadalupe Mountains, expect
there to be a mix of rain, sleet and snow.  Surface temperatures
will be slower to cool in these areas, so accumulations prior to
05/00Z will not be great.  Tonight, the atmospheric column will cool
with precipitation changing to sleet and snow this evening, then all
snow after 05/06Z.  Snowfall amounts are expected to be around an
inch, perhaps two over SE NM, with an inch or less over the Permian
Basin and Western Low Rolling Plains.  A mix of freezing rain and
sleet could affect the Stockton Plateau and Lower Trans Pecos this
evening, but due to the column cooling, think any icing potential
will be fairly limited, due to a changeover to sleet or snow, and
also to how light precipitation will be in these areas.  Considering
all of the above, have decided to issue a Winter Weather Advisory
for the SE NM Plains, Permian Basin and Western Low Rolling Plains.
To keep the product from being too complicated, it will begin at
04/18Z and run until 05/12Z, despite the different timing for the
wintry precipitation.

Strong northeast winds will increase through Guadalupe Pass behind
the front tonight.  Since wind speeds will probably rise to 40 to 50
mph, have issued a High Wind Warning which will run from 05/00Z
until 05/15Z.  After precipitation ends late tonight, the ua trough
will shear eastward.  We will still be left with the arctic airmass
over the region, so have kept high and low temperatures a bit below
guidance considering how poorly models performed with the last arctic
airmass.  We will warm closer to normal over the weekend, then a bit
warmer early next week.  A weak ua trough is progged to head our way
via northern Mexico next week.  Have kept the forecast dry through
the extended for now due to variable solutions regarding the ua
troughs movement, and how weak it is.

AVIATION...

Mainly VFR conditions expected early this morning ahead of a strong
cold front. The front is expected to quickly push southwest to
near the Interstate 20 corridor by 15z and the Interstate 10
corridor by 17z. MVFR conditions will rapidly develop behind the
front with winds turning northeast and increasing to 15 to 25 mph
and gusty. Expecting IFR conditions in rain and fog to develop
generally 2 to 4 hours after fropa with a mixture of rain, sleet,
freezing rain and snow developing in the 20-24z Thursday TIMEFRAME.
IFR conditions are expected to continue Thursday evening in snow and
sleet. Northeast winds of 15 to 25 mph and gusty will continue
through Thursday evening.

$$

&&

.MAF WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
NM...WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY until 5 AM MST Thursday FOR THE
     FOLLOWING ZONES... Central Lea County...Eddy County
     Plains...Northern Lea County...Southern Lea County.

TX...WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY until 6 AM CST Thursday FOR THE
     FOLLOWING ZONES... Andrews...Borden...Crane...Dawson...
     Ector...Gaines...Glasscock...Howard...Loving...Martin...
     Midland...Mitchell...Reagan...Reeves County and Upper Trans
     Pecos...Scurry...Upton...Ward...Winkler.

     HIGH WIND WARNING from 5 PM this afternoon to 8 AM MST Thursday
     FOR THE FOLLOWING ZONES... Guadalupe Mountains.


&&

$$

10

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