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Winter Weather Forecast Discussion
 
(Latest Discussion - Issued 2116Z Mar 22, 2017)
 
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Abbreviations and acronyms used in this product
 
Geographic Boundaries -  Map 1: Color  Black/White       Map 2: Color  Black/White


PROBABILISTIC HEAVY SNOW AND ICING DISCUSSION
NWS WEATHER PREDICTION CENTER COLLEGE PARK MD
516 PM EDT WED MAR 22 2017

VALID 00Z THU MAR 23 2017 - 00Z SUN MAR 26 2017


...WESTERN U.S....

THE PATTERN SHOULD REMAIN ACTIVE ACROSS THE WESTERN U.S. THROUGH
THE END OF THE WEEK...WITH MODERATE TO LOCALLY HEAVY SNOW EXPECTED
ALONG THE HIGHER ELEVATIONS OF THE CASCADES...NORTHERN
CALIFORNIA...CENTRAL GREAT BASIN...AND CENTRAL/NORTHERN ROCKIES. 

THE INITIAL THREAT FOR HEAVY SNOW WILL BE WITH SOUTHERN STREAM
SHORTWAVE ENERGY EXPECTED TO AMPLIFY WHILE MOVING INLAND OVER
CALIFORNIA WEDNESDAY NIGHT BEFORE POTENTIALLY CLOSING OFF NEAR THE
FOUR CORNERS REGION ON THURSDAY.  STRONG LEFT EXIT REGION UPPER
JET DYNAMICS...ALONG WITH LOW-MID LEVEL FRONTOGENESIS AND AN AXIS
OF POSITIVE PRECIPITABLE WATER VALUES...SHOULD BRING MODERATE TO
HEAVY SNOW TO THE FAVORED TERRAIN OF UTAH AND WYOMING WEDNESDAY
NIGHT INTO THURSDAY MORNING...WITH THE GREATEST ACCUMULATIONS
EXPECTED TO EXTEND FROM THE SOUTHERN WASATCH RANGE TO THE
UINTAS...TETONS...WIND RIVER...AND BIG HORN RANGES. 

THURSDAY NIGHT INTO FRIDAY...THE GREATEST THREAT FOR HEAVY SNOW
SHOULD SHIFT EASTWARD INTO COLORADO AS THE CLOSED ENERGY EDGES
EASTWARD AND HELPS DEEPEN A SURFACE LOW IN THE LEE OF THE COLORADO
ROCKIES.  STRONG NORTHEASTERLY LOW LEVEL FLOW TO THE NORTH OF THE
STRENGTHENING LEE SIDE LOW SHOULD SUPPORTING HEAVY UPSLOPE SNOWS
ALONG THE COLORADO FRONT RANGE.  SNOWS ARE EXPECTED TO PERSIST
INTO LATE FRIDAY BEFORE THE LOW TRACKS FURTHER EAST INTO THE
CENTRAL PLAINS.

UPSTREAM...THE THREAT FOR HEAVY SNOW SHOULD RETURN TO THE PACIFIC
NORTHWEST AND HIGHER ELEVATIONS OF NORTHERN CALIFORNIA THURSDAY
NIGHT INTO FRIDAY AS AN UPPER TROUGH AND ASSOCIATED COLD FRONT
PRESS INLAND OVER THE WESTERN U.S....WITH THE CHANCE FOR SNOW
SPREADING SOUTH AND EAST FRIDAY INTO SATURDAY WHILE THE BOUNDARY
PUSHES INTO THE NORTHERN ROCKIES...CENTRAL GREAT BASIN...AND
CENTRAL CALIFORNIA.

WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE NAM...MODEL GUIDANCE HAS GENERALLY COME
INTO BETTER AGREEMENT WITH THE EVOLUTION OF THE UPPER LOW CLOSING
OFF OVER THE FOUR CORNERS REGION AND SURFACE CYCLONE DEEPENING IN
THE LEE OF THE COLORADO ROCKIES.  HOWEVER...THE SMALLER SCALE
DETAIL DIFFERENCES ARE LEADING TO UNCERTAINTY WITH EXACT SNOW
LEVELS/SNOWFALL TOTALS...ESPECIALLY ALONG THE COLORADO FRONT
RANGE. 


THE PROBABILITY OF ICE ACCUMULATIONS OF 0.25 INCH OR MORE IS LESS
THAN 10 PERCENT.


GERHARDT