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Colder air is moving into the state on the heels of the low pressure system that brought rain to the metro area Tuesday afternoon, increasing the chance for some light snow in the area into Wednesday morning.
Another storm system expected Friday could also bring some snow, said Matt DeMaria, a meteorologist with the Albuquerque office of the National Weather Service.
Tuesday’s rainfall, as recorded at NWS’ airport station, dropped .10 inches of rain between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., although higher amounts of .25 inches were recorded in areas closer to the foothills. Since the start of November, Albuquerque has seen 1.06 inches of winter precipitation, a bit less than the 1.40 inches for the same time last winter.
For Wednesday, “we’re not expecting any snow accumulations on the roads, though maybe a dusting on grassy areas,” DeMaria said. However, it should be breezy in the metro area with gusts in the 30-35 mph range and stronger along the peaks of the Sandia and Manzano mountains. Statewide, most of the winds will be east of the central mountain chain.
“Along the central mountains and eastward will be westerly winds for most of the state, but the northeastern corner will be northeasterly winds,” he said. “We’re looking at gusts potentially up to 60 miles per hour along the mountain peaks and right east of the central mountains.”
Metro area highs will be in the low-to mid-40s on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, “fluctuating a few degrees each day, but generally staying in that range,” DeMaria said. The coldest temperature over the next few days will be Wednesday night, when the thermometer dips to about 20 degrees.
A storm system approaching the Great Basin should make its way into New Mexico on Friday and with it an increased chance for precipitation in the higher elevations. The metro area could see rain transitioning to snow at night, but not leaving behind any significant accumulation into Saturday, he said.
Weather models beyond that are still in flux, with some showing another storm entering the state Sunday and other models showing a storm coming Monday or Tuesday next week.
“There’s pretty good confidence that there will be a storm sometime around that time frame,” DeMaria said, “but it’s still too early to say exactly when.”