Big weather changes are on the way as a Pacific storm system approaches the state today. It’s already bringing temperatures across northern New Mexico 5-15° cooler than yesterday, just a degree or two cooler farther south/east. Even though it will be cooler than yesterday, high temperatures will still be 5-15° above average statewide. The biggest changes arrive as a backdoor cold front moves across eastern New Mexico tonight.
The backdoor front tonight will bring very gusty east canyon winds to the middle Rio Grande Valley overnight and into early Thursday morning with gusts up to 60 mph. Winds will die down by Thursday afternoon, with gusts up to 30 mph. Significantly colder high temperatures will arrive tomorrow, anywhere from 10-20° cooler than today. We will go from record breaking heat to below average temperatures in under 48 hours thanks to this powerful cold front.
Clouds will arrive late tonight as the storm arrives, with light snow over the Sacramento Mountains and rain across southern/southeastern New Mexico overnight. Early Thursday morning snow will develop all along the east slopes of the Central Mountain Chain. Snow will die down by Thursday afternoon as rain continues southeast. Another slug of moisture will arrive late Thursday into early Friday morning, bringing more snow to the western high terrain. Very early Friday morning will be the Albuquerque metro’s best chance at picking up any precipitation from this sytem.
Drier air will arrive Friday afternoon as below average high temperatures stick around. Even drier conditions will be apparent this weekend as high temperatures warm back to seasonable Saturday, above average Sunday. By Monday, there is the potential for more rain across parts of the state, but there is once again a lot of uncertainty with precipitation potential. Either way, don’t forget to grab a jacket tomorrow – you’ll need it.