ATTENTION: For more information on the addition of the experimental Rapid Onset Drought hazard type to the Climate Prediction Center's 8-14 Day Hazards Outlook (Contiguous U.S. and Alaska), please click HERE.
Valid Tuesday March 12, 2024 to Monday March 18, 2024
US Hazards Outlook NWS Climate Prediction Center College Park MD 300 PM
EST March 04 2024
Synopsis: Mid-level low pressure is predicted
to shift from the western to eastern contiguous U.S. (CONUS) throughout week-2
which would support a series of surface lows forming over the central CONUS
tracking northeastward to the Great Lakes. This pattern supports slight risks
for heavy snow in higher elevations of the Interior West initially to heavy
precipitation across the southeastern CONUS during the middle of the period in
addition to high winds accompanying the tracking surface lows.
Slight risk of heavy snow for higher elevations
of the Northern and Central Rockies and Great Basin, Tue-Thu, Mar 12-14.
Slight risk of high winds across the Central and Southern Plains, Upper and
Middle Mississippi Valley, and Great Lakes, Tue-Thu, Mar 12-14.
Slight risk of heavy precipitation across portions of the southeastern
CONUS, Thu-Sat, Mar 14-16.
For Tuesday March 12 - Monday
March 18: There is relatively good agreement among model ensemble means
indicating mid-level troughing across the western CONUS shifting to the East
throughout week-2. There is, however, significant disagreement regarding the
location of the trough axis, with the ECENS favoring it closer to the coast and
the GEFS further inland by day 8. This translates to the ECENS showing greater
chances for heavy precipitation lingering across the North Pacific and northern
California from the end of week-1 into the onset of week-2, whereas the GEFS
does not. Due to these significant model differences and the anticipation that
even if heavy precipitation lingers into week-2, it would be brief, the
associated hazard risks are discontinued in today’s outlook for the West Coast.
A slight risk of heavy snow continues for higher elevations of the Northern and
Central Rockies and Great Basin, Mar 12-14, where the GEFS probabilistic
extremes tool (PET) shows at least a 20% chance of 3-day liquid equivalent
exceeding the 85th percentile and half an inch (one inch locally) and
uncalibrated ECENS ensemble shows the potential of areas receiving 4 to 6
inches of snow.
As the mid-level trough shifts eastward over time, a series of surface lows
are predicted to form over the south-central CONUS and track northeastward to
the Great Lakes. These disturbances may be accompanied by enhanced winds and
precipitation. A slight risk of high winds is designated for the Central and
Southern Plains, Upper and Middle Mississippi Valley, and Great Lakes for the
middle of the period (Mar 12-14). PETs show at least a 20% chance of wind
speeds exceeding the 85th percentile and 20 mph across the Central and Southern
Plains and Middle Mississippi Valley. Gusty winds may exacerbate wildfire risk
where there are already ongoing wildfires, especially in the Texas Panhandle
where there is a large fire in the Smokehouse Creek area that is only 15%
Enhanced moisture from the Gulf of Mexico combined with the aforementioned
surface lows tracking across the Southern Plains to Great Lakes supports a
slight risk of heavy precipitation across portions of the southeastern CONUS
during the middle of week-2 (Mar 14-16). There is good agreement among the PETs
showing at least a 20% chance of 3-day precipitation totals exceeding the 85th
percentile and one inch.
For Alaska, there is good model agreement indicating a transition in the
mid-level height pattern from troughing across the state at the beginning of
week-2 to ridging towards the latter portion. A series of surface lows are
predicted for the Gulf of Alaska, although no widespread hazards are
anticipated at this time. There are indications in the PETs for anomalous cold
to potentially linger from the end of week-1 into the beginning of week-2, with
decreasing chances throughout the period due to cold Arctic air receding
northward over time. Due to PETs not indicating temperatures falling to
hazardous criteria no associated hazards are designated at this
Forecaster: Melissa Ou
Please consult local NWS Forecast Offices for short range forecasts and region-specific information.