Wednesday, February 15, 2017

WRF-GFS Forecasts For Weekend

The global forecast models now seem to be very much in agreement as to where the Pacific zonal flow will buckle, with the result being a strong closed low at 500 mb moving across northern Baja. There continues to be a large range in QPF forecasts for eastern Pima County, but that is to be expected. Forecasts shown in this post are from the 00 UTC WRF-GFS forecast run (on the 5.4 km grid) at Atmo last evening.

Winds this morning are gusting 30 to 35 mph from the east here along the Rillito. Up at the Mt. Hopkins RAWS site winds have gusted in the 40 to 60 mph range early this morning.

The forecast above for 500 mb is valid at 05:00 pm MST on 18 February (Saturday - four days out in time). The position of the low brings strongly difluent winds aloft over southeastern Arizona. Although PW at the same time (just below) is not extremely high, values do approach an inch over parts of southern Arizona. At the bottom is the forecast of total precipitation from the model through midnight next Monday night. The Sonoran Desert features a large donut hole in this forecast, while the Sky Islands of southeast Arizona do quite well - much to watch next few days.

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