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    Day 2 FW Outlook >
Mar 23, 2017 Day 1 Fire Weather Outlook
Updated: Thu Mar 23 15:46:03 UTC 2017 (Print Version | 20170323 1700Z Day 1 FireWX shapefile | 20170323 1700Z Day 1 FireWX KML)
Day 1 Fire
 Population  Cities/Towns  CWAs  Interstates  Counties  FEMA Regions  Day 1 Surface Analysis

Risk Area (sq. mi.) Area Pop. Some Larger Population Centers in Risk Area
Extreme 52,661 265,230 Roswell, NM...Clovis, NM...Carlsbad, NM...Portales, NM...Artesia, NM...
Critical 74,598 4,518,259 Denver, CO...Colorado Springs, CO...Aurora, CO...Lakewood, CO...Fort Collins, CO...
   ZCZC SPCFWDDY1 ALL
   FNUS21 KWNS 231541

   Day 1 Fire Weather Outlook  
   NWS Storm Prediction Center Norman OK
   1041 AM CDT Thu Mar 23 2017

   Valid 231700Z - 241200Z

   ...EXTREMELY CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER AREA FOR PORTIONS OF FAR
   SOUTHEASTERN COLORADO...EASTERN NEW MEXICO...AND FAR WEST TEXAS...
   ...CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER AREA FOR PORTIONS OF WEST TEXAS AND THE
   SOUTHERN AND CENTRAL HIGH PLAINS...

   Ongoing forecast is generally on track with a few changes.  A
   northward expansion of the critical area was made into portions of
   north-central Colorado and far southeastern Wyoming, where latest
   high-resolution guidance depicts critical fire weather conditions
   for a few hours during the afternoon.  East of there (into portions
   of southwestern Nebraska), critical fire weather conditions are
   possible although concerns about potential low-level moistening cast
   some doubt on the extent of fire weather threat there.  Shifting
   winds associated with a frontal passage late in the afternoon may
   also complicate any potential fire suppression efforts in these
   areas.

   Farther south, the extremely critical area was extended southward to
   include more of the Big Bend region of Texas.  Here, 30-35 mph winds
   (with higher gusts) will combine with single-digit RH values and dry
   fuels to create a potentially dangerous fire weather scenario during
   the afternoon and early evening.  

   Elsewhere, the remaining forecast is on track with very dangerous
   fire weather conditions expected this afternoon in portions of the
   High Plains and some dry thunderstorm potential from the
   Texas/Oklahoma Panhandles northward to southwest Kansas.  See the
   previous discussion below for more information.

   ..Cook.. 03/23/2017

   .PREV DISCUSSION... /ISSUED 0253 AM CDT Thu Mar 23 2017/

   ...Synopsis...
   A strong upper trough is expected to move from the Southwest into
   the Plains region by Friday morning. As this trough moves eastward,
   an associated surface low will deepen across portions of the central
   High Plains. A substantial fire weather risk is expected to evolve
   as very windy and dry conditions develop behind a dryline across
   portions of West Texas into the High Plains.

   ...West Texas into the Southern/Central High Plains...
   An extremely critical fire weather threat is expected this afternoon
   from the Trans-Pecos region of TX northward through eastern NM into
   southeast CO, as very strong sustained winds increase to 30-40 MPH
   behind the dryline as RH values fall into the 6-10% range. The
   corridor of extremely critical conditions will be constrained to the
   east by the dryline, and to the west by a trailing cold front.
   Surrounding the extremely critical area, the critical area will also
   be largely constrained by the features mentioned above, with some
   extension of critical conditions expected northward into the
   Colorado Front Range. Critical conditions will likely develop by
   midday and may persist into early evening before the advancing cold
   front allows for some RH recovery tonight. 

   Some uncertainty remains regarding the eastward movement of the
   dryline during the day, so some adjustment to the critical/extreme
   delineations will be possible in the Day 1 update based on trends in
   observations and short-term guidance. 

   ...East of the dryline into the southern/central High Plains...
   Moisture quality ahead of the dryline is still expected to be rather
   poor, given low PW values noted in 00Z soundings along the TX Gulf
   Coast. Strong heating/mixing ahead of the dryline will allow RH
   values to drop to 25-35%, which combined with strong winds of 25-35
   MPH will result in elevated fire weather conditions where dry fuels
   are available. 

   Additionally, initial convective development in the vicinity of the
   dryline late this afternoon will likely produce little wetting
   rainfall, given fast storm motions and relatively dry subcloud
   layers. The chance for wetting rainfall will increase by evening,
   but isolated, mostly dry thunderstorms will be possible in the
   21Z-00Z time frame.

   ...Please see www.spc.noaa.gov/fire for graphic product...

   CLICK FOR DAY 1 FIREWX AREAL OUTLINE PRODUCT (KWNSPFWFD1)
      
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Page last modified: March 23, 2017
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