Rain Ends - Winds Howl Friday!

(As of 5 AM MST.) 

Widespread moderate to heavy rain fell across parts of the southeastern plains of New Mexico and across parts of west Texas yesterday into last night. I measured a storm total (as of 5 AM MST) of .59" here at my home in Carlsbad, NM. This brings my January and Year To Date total up to 1.08", which is rare for January. Additional local rainfall totals can be found on the CoCoRAHS web page, and via this link from the Albuquerque National Weather Service Office.

Last Nights 06Z/11 PM MST NAM 500 MB Analysis.

 NAM 500 MB Forecast.
Valid At 11 AM MST Friday.

One storm departs the area today as another takes aim on the state for Friday. Unfortunately this next storm is going to track across Wyoming and Colorado, taking the northerly route. This means we get sideswiped here in southeastern New Mexico and west Texas with the base of the upper-level trough of low pressure.

 Forecast winds aloft on Friday are going to be in the 115 knot or 132 mph range at 500 millibars, or roughly 18,000' above sea level over the area. Winds at the 700 millibar or 10,000' above sea level are forecast to be around 90 knots, or 104 mph. This is bad news for us because as the surface pressure gradient tightens up as the surface low deepens to our north, and these high winds aloft begin to mix downward with the daytime heating, the end result will be another high wind event for the area.

Southwesterly to westerly winds are forecast to increase to sustained speeds of 25 - 45 mph with gusts near 65 mph on Friday across the eastern plains, the east facing slopes of the northern Sacramento mountains, and across Chaves County. Later in the day these winds are forecast to increase even further to sustained speeds at 35 - 45 mph with gusts near 70 mph

Across Eddy and northern Lea Counties southwesterly to westerly winds are forecast to increase to sustained speeds of 35 - 45 mph with gusts near 60 mph on Friday. Across the Guadalupe mountains westerly winds are forecast to increase to sustained speeds of 40 - 50 mph with gusts near 75 mph! Travel through Guadalupe Pass may become dangerous due to these high cross winds.

Areas of blowing dust may develop in those locations that not receive any rain or snow from this latest storm. As always in the more dust prone locations such as- exposed or freshly plowed farmlands, fields, open lots, and construction sites, sudden drops in the visibility will occur.
 Colder Weather Coming.

A turn to colder weather across the state is forecast beginning Friday night. As the next upper-level trough of low pressure sweeps east of the state on Friday it will kick a strong cold front across the state. Highs across southeastern New Mexico will warm into the 60's today and tomorrow. By Saturday we start the downward trend into the 30's and 40's which will continue into much of next week.

Albuquerque, NM

 Roswell, NM.

Artesia, NM.

Carlsbad, NM.

Hobbs, NM.

Ruidoso, NM.

 Note: When using the graphs above please use some caution here. These graphs were made off last night's 00Z/5 PM MST run of the GFS computer forecast model. As I have mentioned before a new model run comes out every six hours, and when it does its forecast changes. These charts give you a pretty good indicator of the trend over the next week. But the daily details will change from day to day.

Timeline explained-

 00/10= 00Z/5 PM MST On Wednesday Jan 9th.
12/10= 12Z/5 AM MST On Thursday Jan 10th.
00/11= 00Z/5 PM MST On Thursday Jan 10th.
12/11= 12Z/5 AM MST On Friday Jan 11th.

ECMWF 500 MB Forecast.
Valid At 5 PM MST Monday Jan 14, 2013.

We are entering a periord of unsettled weather along with a stretch of colder temps. Last nights run of the European model (map above) is forecasting yet another strong cutoff mid-upper level low to drop into northwestern Mexico early next week. If this forecast is correct then we may see a more widespread snow event impact a larger swath of the area, since a colder air mass will be in place when this storm arrives...if it arrives. Stay tuned.

The Truth Is Stranger Than Fiction! 

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  1. Glad for your respectable rains, including January to date...nice! Too bad we all go into the deep freeze...just hoping this is the worst and the last, and also not as bad as Feb 2011.

    But like you, thinking we are cooling now (contrary to the 2012-was-the-warmest-ever hype), there may be more of this to come? Abq becomes Santa Fe, Las Cruces becomes Abq, Carlsbad becomes Santa Rosa, etc.

  2. Yes David the cold will be king next week and if the Euro is right snow will return. I think we are just getting started with the coldest temps yet to come. Hope its not going to be as bad as Feb 2011 either.


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