Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Outlook For Tomorrow

Altocumulus floating over Catalinas this morning. Bit of sunrise color at Prescott airport in view at bottom.

The 500 mb pattern is fairly complex this morning (above is 00 UTC analysis from GFS). There is a very large and somewhat flat cyclone centered over southwestern Canada, with a split flow into a trough well west of Baja. The IR satellite image below is from 7:00 am MST, and the most distinct feature captured is distinct shortwave west of Washington/Oregon.

The 06 GFS forecast for 500 mb above is valid at noon tomorrow, Thursday. The model forecasts the main trough to sharpen and eject the southern wave northeastward toward Arizona. As this happens, the GEFS ensembles (QPF plumes below from 06 UTC) forecast a very light rain event for the airport.

The WRF-GFS forecasts from 06 UTC runs at Atmo are a bit more aggressive for precipitation - forecast above shows total valid through noon Friday. That model forecasts a considerable increase in PW - from current value of 0.29" to nearly and inch - as the southern shortwave trough approaches (below, valid at 3:00 pm tomorrow afternoon).

We may get some rain tomorrow, but probable amounts still quite uncertain - time will tell.

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