Blizzard conditions have been impacting much of the Northwestern and Western US, as well as parts of the Great Basin the past couple of days.Temperatures behind an arctic cold front that has been partly responsible for the current Western weather woes, have been hovering around 0 for daytime highs near the Canadian border, with overnight lows bottoming out in the -20 to -40 degree range. This is really unusual for November, and really more like January/February readings.
This arctic airmass will arrive in New Mexico later today, and in SE NM late tonight or early tomorrow morning. Enjoy the warm weather folks because it's coming to an end.
Southwesterly winds sustained at speeds of around 25-35 mph with gusts to 40-50 mph will kick in around late morning across the local area. A High Wind Warning is in effect for the Guadalupe Mountains, where these winds will gust up to near 70 mph today. A Wind Advisory is in effect for the Sacramento Mountains and the Eastern Plains today. Southwesterly winds are forecast to gust up to around 50-55 mph.
Yet another Red Flag Warning has been issued for E/ESE NM today due to the extremely dry conditions, relative humidity values in the single digits, and the strong southwesterly winds. Please refrain from any type of outdoor activity that involves the use of sparks or flame. Any grass, rangeland, or forest fire that should develop, will have the potential to rapidly spread and grow in the high winds!
As the arctic airmass invades the area later tonight, we can expect to see rapidly falling temperatures, and blustery northerly winds. Last night, temperatures were dropping at the rate of 15-20 degrees in a matter of minutes in Utah with the arctic cold frontal passage.
Our highs today will be near 80. Most of us will only see highs on Thanksgiving Day in the 40's and 50's. The Cloudcroft and Ruidoso areas will see high temps in the 30's where there will be a slight chance for a snow shower or two, but no significant accumulations are anticipated.
A Hard Freeze Watch has been issued for SE NM and parts of West Texas for the overnight hours tomorrow night into Friday morning. The coldest temperatures of the season are anticipated across the area. Low temperatures are forecast to bottom out in the 10-20 degree range across all of the local area. I fully expect to see a few of the normally colder spots to dip down into the single digits as well.
Life is never boring for long in SE NM when it comes to our weather. Yet another powerful upper level storm is forecast to produce another high wind event across the area by Sunday and Monday. If you are hoping for rain or snow...then please continue to do so, but unfortunately that does not appear to be a reality anytime soon.
The Truth Is Stranger Than Fiction!