Windy weather returns Tuesday afternoon, especially across eastern New Mexico where winds and dry air will combine to create a critical fire danger.
Unseasonably warm temperatures have returned to New Mexico today. This warmth will continue Tuesday afternoon with near record high temperatures, especially in the eastern half of the state. Strong, westerly winds will develop Tuesday afternoon for areas in eastern New Mexico where gusts up to 45 mph will be possible. Combined with very dry air and dry ground, a critical fire danger will develop through parts of eastern New Mexico.
Winds will relax Tuesday night, but a strong backdoor cold front will push south across eastern New Mexico starting early Wednesday morning bringing gusts back up to 30 mph. This front will bring much colder temperatures to the eastern half of the state Wednesday and Thursday, pushing through the canyons of the central mountains into the Rio Grande Valley Wednesday evening. Meanwhile, a Pacific cold front will also push in from the west Wednesday evening, bringing slightly cooler temperatures to the western half of the state.
Widespread freezing temperatures are likely Thursday morning, including for areas that haven’t seen their first freeze yet like the Albuquerque Sunport. Temperatures will stay cool Thursday afternoon, but warmer weather returns into the weekend.