Scientific Forecaster Discussion

Return to Local Conditions & Forecast

Without Abbreviations
With Abbreviations

Northern Alaska Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Fairbanks AK
121 PM AKDT SUN AUG 28 2016

The 12z model suite initialized well against the 12 analysis and
verified well against the 18z analysis. Minimal model spread on
feature, track and strength is noted through mid week however
significant differences creep into models both from run to run and
between model families by the end of the week leading to lower
than average forecast confidence in the long term.

Aloft at 500 HPA, a highly meridional pattern with characteristics
of an omega block continues to develop with a ridge extending
from the mid latitudes northward through the Bering Strait today
and to near Barrow and over western Alaska Monday. Deep troughs
with anchoring lows one 500 nm south of the western Aleutians and
the other over the southeast panhandle. The block slowly
retrogrades and weakens by the end of the week.

On the surface a 1038 mb high currently 100 nm south of Wrangel
Island will build to around 1040 mb and drift north east to be
located 100 nm northwest of Barrow Monday morning and will be
located 150 nm north of Demarcation Point Tuesday morning.
Combined with a 988 mb low forecasted to located 100 nm west of
Sitka Monday a strong pressure and temperature gradient will
develop over the Brooks Range, especially the eastern Brooks
Range. Expect gusty north winds to develop through the Brooks
Range later tonight and continue through Monday as the high
pressure north of Barrow piles up colder along the north side of
the Brooks Range. Expect light rain tonight to change to wet snow
over 2 thousand feet in the Brooks Range with minor accumulations
possible. Gusty east to northeast winds in the 20 to 30 mph range
will develop over the interior summits Monday, otherwise much
drier conditions as compared to recent days are expected over the
interior with seasonal afternoon temperatures and cool mornings
especially in valley locations. Tranquil weather is expected over
the western interior as well as the west coast with seasonal
temperatures and only isolated showers expected into the middle
of next week.

Coastal Hazard Potential Days 3 and 4...None.


Minimal fire weather concerns with min RH values expected to
remain above 40 percent. Winds over the summits in the interior
will increase to 20 to 30 mph Monday.


High water continues on the Noatak and Kobuk rivers and is
expected to remain high through Monday. Hunters...pilots and
operators of air charter services should be aware that some
landing areas may be inundated and that the high water may
cause increased debris to be moving downstream.


Small Craft Advisory for PKZ220-PKZ225-PKZ230.



National Weather Service Glossary of Abbreviations