530  
FXUS65 KFGZ 030520  
AFDFGZ  
 
AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION  
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE FLAGSTAFF AZ  
1020 PM MST SAT MAR 2 2024  
   
SYNOPSIS
 
A POTENT PACIFIC STORM SYSTEM TOWARDS THE NORTH WILL  
CONTINUE TO BRING STRONG WINDS AND COOLER TEMPERATURES TO NORTHERN  
ARIZONA THROUGH SUNDAY. ISOLATED RAIN AND SNOW SHOWERS ARE  
EXPECTED LATER THIS EVENING WITH GREATEST CHANCES ALONG THE  
ARIZONA/UTAH BORDER. THE WEATHER PATTERN REMAINS UNSETTLED FOR  
MUCH OF NEXT WEEK, HOWEVER, NO SIGNIFICANT PRECIPITATION IS LIKELY  
AT THIS TIME.  
 

 
   
UPDATE
 
WIDESPREAD WIND GUSTS OF 60 TO 75 MPH WERE RECORDED  
NORTHEAST OF THE MOGOLLON RIM THIS AFTERNOON, CAUSING LARGE AREAS  
OF BLOWING DUST AND POOR TRAVEL CONDITIONS. THESE DAMAGING GUSTS  
LARGELY SUBSIDED AFTER SUNSET, BUT CONDITIONS ARE STILL VERY WINDY  
IN THE DOWNSLOPE AREAS. EXPECT WIND GUSTS OF 50 TO 60 MPH TO  
CONTINUE TONIGHT IN THE WIND BELT BETWEEN FLAGSTAFF AND WINSLOW.  
WEAKER WINDS ARE FORECAST TOMORROW. TONIGHT'S WIND FORECAST WAS  
UPDATED TO BETTER REPRESENT THE FAVORED AREAS DOWNSLOPE OF THE  
HIGH TERRAIN AND CONFIDENCE IN LIGHTER WINDS ELSEWHERE.  
 
SCATTERED PRECIPITATION CONTINUES IN NORTHWEST ARIZONA, IMPACTING  
AREAS LIKE THE KAIBAB PLATEAU WITH SNOWFALL. TONIGHT'S SNOWFALL  
FORECAST WAS NUDGED DOWN A BIT TO BETTER ACCOUNT FOR THE IMPACT OF  
HIGH WINDS ON ACCUMULATION. MESOSCALE MODELS STILL POINT TO  
CONDITIONS FAVORABLE ENOUGH FOR A BIT OF LIGHT PRECIPITATION AS  
FAR SOUTH AS THE CENTRAL MOGOLLON RIM LATER TONIGHT. STAY TUNED  
FOR FURTHER UPDATES TO THE FORECAST.  
 

 
   
PREV DISCUSSION /450 PM MST/
 
IF YOU PLAN ON HEADING OUTDOORS THIS  
AFTERNOON, MAKE SURE TO HOLD ON TO YOUR HAT OR TOUPEE AS WINDS  
ARE QUITE STRONG ACROSS MUCH OF NORTHERN ARIZONA AT THIS TIME.  
WIDESPREAD SOUTHWEST GUSTS OF 30-50 MPH ARE CURRENTLY TAKING PLACE  
FROM PRESCOTT TO SHOW LOW AND NORTHWARD FROM FLAGSTAFF TO PAGE.  
THE STRONGEST WIND GUST SO FAR THIS AFTERNOON WAS MEASURED AT TWO  
GUNS JUST OFF OF I-40, ABOUT 40 MILES EAST OF FLAGSTAFF, CLOCKING  
IN AT 69 MPH... A GREAT EXAMPLE OF THE DOWNSLOPING EFFECT OFF OF  
THE MOGOLLON RIM. MUCH OF THE REGION REMAINS UNDER CLEAR SKY  
CONDITIONS WITH A FEW CLOUDS NEAR FLAGSTAFF AND INCREASING CLOUD  
COVER OVER THE KAIBAB PLATEAU. GIVEN THE CLEAR SKIES AND THE  
MIDDLE OF THE AFTERNOON, EXPECT THE WIND INTENSITY TO INCREASE  
FURTHER THROUGH THIS EVENING AS CONDITIONS REACH PEAK MIXING DOWN  
TO THE SURFACE.  
 
AS THE LARGE LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM, CURRENTLY CENTERED OFF THE  
PACIFIC NORTHWEST COAST, DIGS INLAND, THE ASSOCIATED UPPER-LEVEL  
JET TIGHTENS FURTHER, STRETCHING FROM CENTRAL CALIFORNIA AND INTO  
THE FOUR CORNERS. ALL THREE GLOBAL MODELS (GFS, ECMWF, NAM)  
CONTINUE TO SHOW 700 MB WINDS PEAKING THIS EVENING THROUGH EARLY  
SUNDAY MORNING WITH GUSTS AS HIGH AS 70 KTS ACROSS NORTHERN  
ARIZONA. THE WINDS TONIGHT WILL LIKELY DECREASE IN INTENSITY FOR  
LOWER VALLEY LOCATIONS (BAGDAD, COTTONWOOD, SEDONA, AND PAYSON) AS  
MIXING BECOMES LESS OPTIMAL AND DECOUPLING OCCURS, HOWEVER, WILL  
REMAIN GUSTY TO STRONG FOR HIGHER ELEVATIONS, ESPECIALLY ALONG AND  
DIRECTLY DOWNWIND OF ANY MOUNTAINOUS TERRAIN. DOWNSLOPING SHOULD  
PERSIST DOWNWIND OF THE MOGOLLON RIM (DONEY PARK TO METEOR  
CRATER), THE WHITE MOUNTAINS (VERNON TO GREER), AND THE BLACK MESA  
(KAYENTA TO MANY FARMS) WITH GUSTS AS HIGH AS 70 MPH POSSIBLE. THE  
STRONG SOUTHWEST WINDS, 35-50 MPH, PERSIST ACROSS NORTHEAST  
ARIZONA ON SUNDAY, WHILE DECREASING IN INTENSITY ACROSS YAVAPAI  
AND NORTHERN GILA COUNTIES, 20-35 MPH. MUCH LIGHTER SOUTHERLY  
WINDS FINALLY RETURN BY SUNDAY NIGHT, REMAINING BREEZY, 15-25 MPH,  
FOR MONDAY AND TUESDAY. THE CURRENT HIGH WIND WARNING AND WIND  
ADVISORIES REMAIN IN EFFECT THROUGH SUNDAY.  
 
WITH WIDESPREAD DEWPOINTS IN THE TEENS TO LOW 20S ACROSS NORTHERN  
ARIZONA, MOSTLY DRY CONDITIONS WILL PERSIST THROUGH THIS EVENING.  
HAVING SAID THAT, DEWPOINTS CONTINUE TO INCREASE GRADUALLY ACROSS  
EXTREME NORTHWEST ARIZONA AS MOISTURE FROM THE WEST PUSHES  
EASTWARD INTO UTAH. ISOLATED RAIN AND SNOW SHOWERS REMAIN IN THE  
FORECAST FOR LATER THIS EVENING AND LAST THROUGH SUNDAY MORNING  
WITH THE GREATEST CHANCES (40-70%) ALONG THE AZ/UT BORDER. SNOW  
SHOWERS COULD BE SEEN AROUND THE FLAGSTAFF AREA DURING THIS TIME,  
HOWEVER, THERE IS HIGH CONFIDENCE THAT NOTHING WILL ACCUMULATE ON  
THE ROADS AS TEMPERATURES STRUGGLE TO REACH FREEZING. YOUR BEST  
BET FOR ACCUMULATION WILL BE FOR THE KAIBAB PLATEAU, WHERE 2-6  
INCHES CAN OCCUR BY SUNDAY MORNING.  
 
CONDITIONS BEGIN TO IMPROVE LATER ON SUNDAY AS THE STORM TOWARDS  
THE NORTH BEGINS TO LIFT AND HEAD NORTHEASTWARD. THE JET STREAM  
LOOKS TO REMAIN OVER THE SOUTHWEST FOR THE MAJORITY OF NEXT WEEK  
WITH BREEZY WEST-SOUTHWEST WINDS PERSISTING EACH AFTERNOON  
THROUGH THURSDAY. DRY CONDITIONS ARE ANTICIPATED FOR MONDAY  
THROUGH WEDNESDAY WITH CHANCES FOR PRECIPITATION RETURNING FOR  
THURSDAY AND FRIDAY. THE WEATHER PATTERN WILL CONTINUE TO BE  
UNSETTLED THROUGH NEXT WEEK, HOWEVER, NO IMPACTFUL STORMS ON THE  
HORIZON AT THIS TIME. AT FLAGSTAFF AIRPORT, WE ARE ABOUT 20 INCHES  
OF SNOW BELOW OUR ANNUAL AVERAGE...HOPING FOR A MIRACLE MARCH.  
 

 
   
AVIATION...SUNDAY 03/06Z THROUGH MONDAY 04/06Z
 
AREAS MVFR AND  
ISOLD IFR DUE TO CIGS/-SHRA/-SHSN/-SHRAPL WILL AFFECT HIGHER TERRAIN  
NORTH OF A KGCN-KFMN LINE UNTIL 12Z, THEN WILL MAINLY BE OVER THE  
KAIABAB PLATEAU. ALL OTHER AREAS MAINLY VFR, WITH SCT-BKN SC/CU  
LAYERS ABOVE 4-5KFT AGL. IMPROVING CONDITIONS AFT 18Z SUNDAY, WITH  
CIGS LIFTING AND SHOWERS BECOMING SPOTTY. EXPECT SFC WINDS S-SW15-  
25G35-45KTS THROUGH 16Z-18Z SUNDAY, THEN SLOWLY DECREASING THROUGH  
THE AFTERNOON.  
 
OUTLOOK...MONDAY 04/06Z THROUGH WEDNESDAY 06/06Z...MAINLY VFR AND  
MUCH LESS WIND. SPOTTY SHOWERS/CIGS PRODUCING BRIEF MVFR OVER HIGHER  
TERRAIN THROUGH 15Z MONDAY, THEN ALL VFR. WINDS DECREASING RAPIDLY  
SUNDAY NIGHT AND BECOMING PRIMARILY SW10-20G25KTS FOR THE REMAINDER  
OF THE OUTLOOK PERIOD.  
 

 
   
FIRE WEATHER...SUNDAY AND MONDAY
 
EXPECT SUSTAINED WIND SPEEDS  
FROM 15 TO 30 MPH AND GUSTS FROM 40 TO 55 MPH THROUGH SUNDAY  
MORNING, SOME GUSTS OVER 60 MPH POSSIBLE DOWNWIND OF HIGHER TERRAIN.  
WINDS GRADUALLY TAIL OFF SUNDAY AFTERNOON AND NIGHT BECOMING  
SOUTHWEST AT 10 TO 20 MPH ON MONDAY. THE BEST CHANCES FOR RAIN AND  
HIGH ELEVATION SNOW SHOWERS DEVELOP TONIGHT NORTH OF A PRESCOTT TO  
HAPPY JACK TO WINDOW ROCK LINE, ESPECIALLY OVER THE KAIBAB PLATEAU.  
TURNING DRY ON MONDAY.  
 
MONDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY...DRY WITH SOUTHWEST WINDS 10 TO 20 MPH  
EACH AFTERNOON.  
 

 
   
FGZ WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES
 
 
HIGH WIND WARNING UNTIL 1 PM MST SUNDAY FOR AZZ004-012-015-016-  
039.  
 
WIND ADVISORY UNTIL 6 PM MST SUNDAY FOR AZZ005>007-009>011-013-  
014-017-040.  
 
WIND ADVISORY UNTIL 6 AM MST SUNDAY FOR AZZ008.  
 

 
 

 
 
PUBLIC...BENJI/LAGUARDIA  
AVIATION...PETERSON  
FIRE WEATHER...MCCOLLUM  
 
FOR NORTHERN ARIZONA WEATHER INFORMATION VISIT  
WEATHER.GOV/FLAGSTAFF  
 
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