Strong winds Tuesday afternoon …

AI generated image of a wind-blown husky in the mountains

AI generated image of a wind-blown husky in the mountains

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Monday – 6 May 2024 – 2:45pm

The past…

At Stevens Field the high temperature yesterday afternoon was 61. The low this morning was 27.

The cold front moved through the Pagosa area between midnight and 1am last night. Precip was minimal but the winds packed quite a punch. 

The peak wind at the airfield was 51mph at 12:55am.

The peak wind for Lobo Overlook/Wolf Creek Pass was 83mph at 12:35am.

Average HighRecord High / YearAverage LowRecord Low / Year
6587/ 19162812 / 1950

Precipitation summary… Most of the precip stayed to our north. Precip amounts in the Pagosa area ranged from zero to 0.05”.  Wolf Creek Pass got around an inch of snow.

Forecast discussion…

Water vapor satellite this afternoon – The cold front is well to our east.  Strong upper-level flow out of the west and northwest will keep our winds gusty through tomorrow evening.
Water vapor satellite this afternoon – The cold front is well to our east.  Strong upper-level flow out of the west and northwest will keep our winds gusty through tomorrow evening.
Radar this afternoon – Showers are moving west to east across parts of northern Colorado.  This is typical in strong flow behind a cold front.
Radar this afternoon – Showers are moving west to east across parts of northern Colorado.  This is typical in strong flow behind a cold front.

Forecast highlights…

*** The Grand Junction NWS has issued a WIND ADVISORY for 30-40mph winds and potential gusts to 60mph for the San Juan River basin valid 9am to 9pm Tuesday. ***

*** Scattered afternoon showers, isolated thunderstorms, and LIGHTER WINDS Thursday through Sunday. ***

Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday… Drier air will move in from the northwest.  We’ll have partly cloudy skies and gusty afternoon winds.

Winds… Monday afternoon gusts will be 30-35mph. *** Tuesday afternoon into Tuesday evening winds will gust 40-50mph. The windy spots could hit 55mph. *** Wednesday afternoon winds will gust 25-30mph.

Temps… Highs Monday will be in the mid-40s to low 50s and lows will be in the low to high 20s. Highs Tuesday and Wednesday will be in the mid-50s to low 60s and lows will be in the low 20s to low 30s.

NBM wind gusts at 4pm Tuesday shows 54mph near Pagosa, 54mph for Chama, 57mph for Bayfield, and up to 75mph in our mountains.
NBM wind gusts at 4pm Tuesday shows 54mph near Pagosa, 54mph for Chama, 57mph for Bayfield, and up to 75mph in our mountains.

Thursday through Sunday… A cut-off low is expected to spin over UT for a few days. Forecast models struggle with cut-off lows because there is very limited upper-level steering.  Weather associated with cut-off lows is usually confined to a small area near the low.  So if the low wobbles any direction, it impacts the forecast.

For now, I expect our weather to be unsettled with a chance for scattered afternoon showers and isolated thunderstorms through the weekend.

The good news is that the winds will be considerably weaker.

Winds… Afternoon gusts will be 15-20mph. Isolated stronger gusts are possible near showers and thunderstorms.

Temps… Thursday and Friday highs will be in the mid-50s to mid-60s and lows will be in the high 20s to mid-30s.  Saturday and Sunday highs will be in the high 50s to high 60s and lows will be in the high 20s to high 30s.

NBM precip to late Sunday evening shows 0.41” for Pagosa, 0.46” for Chama, 0.12” for Bayfield, and up to 0.90” for our mountains. The models vary considerably on precip amounts from around 0.20” to 1.20”. Recently the NBM has handled the lower precip amounts the best, so I’ll stick with it for now.
NBM precip to late Sunday evening shows 0.41” for Pagosa, 0.46” for Chama, 0.12” for Bayfield, and up to 0.90” for our mountains.
The models vary considerably on precip amounts from around 0.20” to 1.20”. Recently the NBM has handled the lower precip amounts the best, so I’ll stick with it for now.

My next forecast post will be on Wednesday.

– Shawn

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Shawn Pro

I’ve been a “weather geek” since I was young child. I joined the military out of high school and was lucky to get my dream job in weather. I have 20 years of military weather experience which includes forecasting the weather all over the world. Highlights were six years in Alaska and making life and death weather decisions during deployments. I love mountains, I love snow, and I love summertime thunderstorms. I spend a bunch of time playing outdoors and found my paradise in Pagosa Springs. I do Pagosa Weather as a community service. Hopefully you find us helpful!
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