The National Weather Service reports that at least two distinct periods of elevated winter weather impacts are expected this week.
First, a strong Arctic front will bring sharply colder temperatures and increasing chances of mainly light snow to areas east of the central mountain chain later Monday through Tuesday night.
At the same time, an expansive upper level storm system will gather strength over the inter-mountain West and Great Basin region. This deepening low pressure system will eventually cross New Mexico later in the week, most likely Thursday night into Friday with additional impacts due to snow as well as the potential for mixed snow, freezing rain across the east-central and southeast plains in advance of the storm system New Years Eve into New Years Day.
Locations most likely impacted by light to moderate snow for late Monday through Tuesday night include areas east of the central mountain chain and especially the northeast. Western and central areas look to be the focus New Years Day into Thursday night and Friday.
- Sharply colder far northeast plains Monday and remainder of the east on Tuesday.
- After today (Sunday), Clayton and much of the northeast plains likely to remain below the freezing mark until New Years Day.
- Minor to moderate snow impacts focused east of the central mountain chain Monday PM through Tuesday PM, especially northeast (e.g. I-25 corridor Las Vegas to Raton Pass).
- Gap winds into the central valleys Monday night; much colder air advancing west toward Divide Tuesday.
- Chance of snow increasing west to east New Years Day including potential for a wintry mix east central and southeast New Years Eve.
- Most widespread winter weather impacts now appear to be New Years Day into Friday.
A strong Arctic front will invade northeast New Mexico on Monday, and the remainder of eastern and central areas of the state by Tuesday. At the same time, an expansive upper level storm system will gather strength and organize over the inter-mountain west and Great Basin region. This deepening low pressure system will eventually cross New Mexico later in the week, most likely late New Years Day into Friday.
Moderate to high confidence on timing of Arctic front and trend toward much colder temperatures for eastern New Mexico later Monday into Tuesday. Lower confidence in the extent of snow impacts across the east early this week, as well as timing of the eastward shift of the deep low pressure around New Years Day.
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