Crazy Variations In Low Temperatures In SE NM This Morning.
South Of Cloudcroft, NM 10-7-2017.
NWS MesoWest Reported High Temps This Afternoon.
Local Low Temperatures This Morning.
Hobbs Airport AWOS 37ºF
Artesia Airport AWOS 39ºF
Roswell Airport ASOS 42ºF
Guadalupe Pass ASOS 46ºF
Sometimes the weather can play tricks on us. Notice that the Ski Apache Personal Weather Station (PWS) located west of Ruidoso and at an elevation of 10,974' reported the warmest overnight lowest temperature with a reading of 50ºF. Not far away and to the south of Cloudcroft the Personal Weather Station in West Cox Canyon at elevation of 8,760' reported a low this morning of 23ºF for the coldest reading locally.
So how does a weather station on the side of Sierra Blanca Peak at nearly 11,000' come in with a reading of 50ºF while the West Cox Canyon Station south of Cloudcroft and at 8,700' come in with a reading of 23ºF. Simple...its called a temperature inversion which are fairly common in the mountains. Meaning that a layer of colder air in the high mountain valleys of the Sacramento Mountains was trapped underneath a warmer layer higher up.
The same thing happened in the Pecos Valley overnight too. Notice that Guadalupe Pass located at 5,449' reported a low of 46ºF while the Personal Weather Station in Cottonwood northwest of Artesia reported 32ºF.
Pockets of colder air in the lower valleys got trapped by a warmer airmass aloft and created these weird readings. This is not as uncommon this time of the year as you may think either.
The Truth Is Stranger Than Fiction!