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Area Forecast Discussion (AFD)

Issued by Fairbanks, AK (AFG)

FXAK69 PAFG 181647

Northern Alaska Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Fairbanks AK
747 AM AKST Sun Feb 18 2018

Aloft...A long wave pattern consists of a deep trough over the Bering 
Sea and NW Pacific with a strong ridge over the eastern Pacific 
north over mainland Alaska. A series of strong short waves will 
move northeast through this pattern causing the ridge to weaken 
over time and the flow to become more zonal in the second half of 
next week. This will bring a series of strong storms across the 
West Coast and Western Interior, with the storms weakening as they
move over the Interior.

A 1048 mb high stretching from the Copper River Basin to Arctic
Village will weaken slowly through Mon and then move east of the
Alcan Border Mon night. This is causing gusting winds through
Windy Pass near Healy that will decrease tonight. 

A 1013 mb low near Wrangel Island will move northwest today. An
Arctic Warm Front stretching from this low to Barrow to Mcgrath
will move to Barter Island to Tok by 3pm Sun, and then Along the
Alcan border tonight. Stratus and areas of fog are associated 
with this feature.

A 994 low near Anadyr will move to near Wrangel Island as a 996 
mb low tonight and then continue moving north. A warm front
stretching from this low to Cape Lisburne to Shageluk will move to
Point Lay to Minchumina by 3pm Sun, then occlude rapidly tonight.
The cold front stretches the low to Bristol Bay and will move
Shishmaref to McGrath by 3pm Sun, then occludes with the warm
front and moves to Barrow to Northway by 3am Mon, and to Barter
Island to Eagle by 3pm Mon. There are areas of freezing rain
along the warm front, that mix with snow in the warm sector as
heavier precip cools the airmass, and then change to snow along
the front. expect 2 to 4 inches of snow along the West Coast and
Western Interior. There are also strong winds with the front along
the West Coast with gusts to 70 kt at Cape Lisburne and 58 kt at 
Wales. This is causing areas of blizzard conditions along the west
Coast today. Snow will taper off quickly west of the front. As 
the front moves east and occludes tonight expect 1-2 inches of 
snow across much of the eastern Interior. 

A very strong low south of Shemya will move to the central Bering
as a 964 mb low by 3pm Mon, and to 100 nm northwest of Cape 
Lisburne as 990 mb low by 3pm Tue. This will bring another round
of heavy snow, freezing rain, strong winds, and blizzard 
conditions to the West Coast Mon into Tue. Could see SW winds of 
50 kt with higher gusts in the SE quadrant of the low over zones 
213 207 Mon night and Tue. This could push ice and water on shore
at the Gambell airport, and in the Bering Strait at Little Diomede
and Wales. 

Models initialize well aloft, but at 06Z all models initialize 4 
mb too weak on the high pressure over the Eastern Interior and 
Copper River Basin. Will add 5 kt to winds deranging Eastern 
Interior and Alaska Range today as a result. The GFS and ECMF show
similar pollutions through 3pm Tue, but the NAM moves surface 
features more quickly than the GFS and ECMF Mon night and Tue. 
Prefer the slower GFS and ECMF pollutions Mon and Tue as the deep
feature in the Bering then will likely move slowly as they 
present. From Wed on, significant differences show up between 
models on the strength and timing of short waves, but all the 
models show a progressive and nearly Oneal flow pattern in the 
second half of the week.

Coastal Hazard Potential Days 3 and 4...
Possible push of water and ice on to the airport at Gambell  and 
Little Diomede and the Bering Strait Mon night through Tue night.



Dense Fog Advisory for AKZ220-AKZ222.

Winter Storm Warning for AKZ208-AKZ210-AKZ211-AKZ214-AKZ217.

Blizzard Warning for AKZ207-AKZ209-AKZ213.

Winter Weather Advisory for AKZ212-AKZ215-AKZ216-AKZ227.

Gale Warning for PKZ210-PKZ215-PKZ220-PKZ225.

Brisk Wind Advisory for PKZ200-PKZ230-PKZ235.