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Area Forecast Discussion (AFD)

Issued by Wichita, Kansas (ICT)

FXUS63 KICT 170000

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Wichita KS
600 PM CST Sat Feb 16 2019

.SHORT TERM...(This evening through Tuesday night)
Issued at 310 PM CST Sat Feb 16 2019

Early this afternoon, large-scale forcing for ascent is 
evidenced by increasing clouds above the stratus deck from near 
Goodland southeast to Emporia. The increasing lift is also 
evidenced by light radar returns showing up in the same general 
vicinity. Lift will continue to increase as the left-exit region 
of a 160+ kt jet coincides with a somewhat negatively-tilted 
trough ejecting out of the Central Rockies. While the lift with 
today's system is noticeably better than yesterday's system, there
continues to be questions about the depth of moisture and the 
degree of any lifting mechanism in the lower levels. 

Forecast soundings and cross sections suggest the moist layer will 
be confined below 800mb for most of south-central and southeast 
Kansas. Strengthening warm air advection and isentropic ascent 
should be able to act on this moist layer (with a sufficient depth 
of 1-1.5km), to lead to areas of freezing drizzle. Weak echoes on 
the ICT TDWR are likely indicative of this process beginning. 
While a lack of cloud ice is expected in this area, surface 
temperatures close to -8C may actually allow intermittent freezing
drizzle/sleet, as the previous shift mentioned. 

Elsewhere, a deeper layer of moisture is expected to develop across 
northeast Kansas, possibly extending as far south/west as a line 
from Russell County southeast through Neosho County. This layer may 
briefly be deep enough to reach into the snow growth region before 
the better forcing exits the area. Therefore, in that area, a 
freezing drizzle/sleet mix may transition to more of a sleet/snow 
mix for a few hours this evening. In fact, some hi-res guidance 
suggests some weak elevated instability and better low/mid level 
convergence which may allow a band of heavier precip to develop, 
especially along the I-70 corridor. Given this potential, snowfall 
amounts were increased a bit there. Ice accretion amounts were 
adjusted up some areawide based on the latest model guidance, giving 
a bit more weight to the hi-res guidance's potentially better 
handling of drizzle/freezing drizzle situations. This still only 
give a few hundredths to perhaps as much as a tenth of an inch of 
ice. But, with the cold temps in place and even some lingering ice 
leftover from yesterday, the thinking is still the same regarding 
potential travel impacts and the Winter Weather Advisory will 
continue. The only change was to add Kingman and Sumner Counties to 
the Advisory due to the slight increase in ice potential there.


Some clouds may linger across central KS, otherwise insolation 
and some downslope component to flow should moderate temperatures 
a bit before the next system arrives.

Monday-Monday night:
Models continue to show mid level moisture working through mainly
central KS during the day. Flurries/light snow still looks on
track, with minor accumulations. Eastern and southern extent is a
bit uncertain given issues with moisture and dry air rotating 
around ridge. There should be a brief reprieve Monday evening 
before advection kicks back in western sections of central KS 
after midnight.

Strong warm air advection/moisture return commences 12-15 UTC at
700MB but 850MB moisture lags closer to 1800 UTC in the south.
Extensive virga may precede the onset of precipitation.
Temperature at the top of moist column is in the -8c to -10c range
in central KS in the morning, so while snow is probable, will
likely be some mix with freezing rain/freezing rain. With
increasing synoptic scale lift from shortwave in the afternoon and
evening, precipitation will be on the increase. Estimated
accumulations range are generally 1-2 inches, with around 3 inches
possible in parts of central KS, and less than an inch in Labette
county. There are some indications of brief steep lapse rates that
could push isolated locations even higher in central KS. -Howerton

.LONG TERM...(Wednesday through Saturday)
Issued at 310 PM CST Sat Feb 16 2019

Early in period, surface ridge will dominate surface pattern, 
with dry and cool conditions. Overrunning develops across western 
KS which could graze western parts of the forecast area Thursday 
night and then again Friday. 

Models now have persistent western trough on the move. As is often
the case, GFS is a bit more progressive than ECMWF, with 500MB low
in western OK at 0000 UTC Sunday, while ECMWF has low back in 
NM. Both show good meridional flow ahead of trough with low level
warm air advection / moisture probable, so precipitation may be 
liquid Friday/Friday night, with a change to solid precipitation 
later Saturday as cold air arrives. Big challenge is highs on 
Saturday. Increased the spread of high temperatures from northwest
to southeast, but probably not nearly far enough. Latest ECMWF at
face value has high of 20 at KRSL at 1200 UTC and falls to 15 by 
0000 UTC, while KCFV's high is near 60 and but falls to the mid
20s at 0000 UTC. Large errors in temperatures are likely, with 
substantial changes this coming week. Also suspect there is a much
higher chance for either snow or rain/snow mix during the day 
Saturday than forecast indicates. -Howerton


.AVIATION...(For the 00Z TAFS through 00Z Sunday evening)
Issued at 545 PM CST Sat Feb 16 2019

Aviation concerns will be low ceilings along with winter precip

Widespread low clouds remain in place across the entire area.
Freezing drizzle picked up a couple hours ago across south central
KS as low level isentropic lift has ramped up along with better
cloud ice for snow lifting off to the northeast. In addition,
regional 88Ds show some enhanced reflectivity moving out of 
western KS and into south central KS which may produce some 
pockets of sleet or snow grains. These lower cigs and winter 
precip is expected to continue for the next 3-5 hours with 
southeast KS(KCNU) seeing the freezing drizzle last the longest. 
In the 06-09z time frame the mid/upper trough will swing far 
enough east that downslope will start to move-in from west to 
east, which will allow ceilings heights to rise. 


Issued at 310 PM CST Sat Feb 16 2019

Extensive precipitation should limit fire weather threat over the
next 7 days. -Howerton 


Wichita-KICT    21  36  16  27 /  40   0   0  10 
Hutchinson      18  33  13  24 /  50   0   0  30 
Newton          17  32  13  25 /  50   0   0  30 
ElDorado        20  34  14  28 /  50   0   0  10 
Winfield-KWLD   23  39  16  31 /  40   0   0  10 
Russell         13  29  10  21 /  50   0   0  50 
Great Bend      14  31  12  21 /  40   0  10  50 
Salina          15  30  12  23 /  60  10   0  40 
McPherson       16  31  12  23 /  50   0   0  40 
Coffeyville     25  39  18  34 /  40  10   0  10 
Chanute         23  35  16  31 /  50  10   0  10 
Iola            22  33  15  30 /  50  10   0  10 
Parsons-KPPF    24  37  16  33 /  40  10   0  10 


Winter Weather Advisory until 3 AM CST Sunday for KSZ032-033-