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It appears that our typically warm, dry, and windy spring weather we normally see in March and April, just can't wait to get cranked up this year. Today will certainly feel like March with the high winds, areas of blowing dust, the high fire danger, and the near record warm temperatures. Our National Weather Service forecast high temperatures today will range from 74 in Tatum, to 78 in Hobbs, 81 in Roswell, 83 in Artesia, and 84 in Carlsbad. A few new records may be established.
A High Wind Warning remains in effect for the Guadalupe Mountains today through 5 PM MST. Westerly winds are forecast to be sustained at around 40-50 mph with gusts to at least 65-70 mph. Westerly winds are already howling across the Guadalupe's early this morning. As of 5:30 AM MST some of the higher gusts being noted include- The Bowl Raws 84 mph, Guadalupe Pass 76 mph, Pine Springs Raws 74 mph, McKittrick Canyon Raws 64 mph, and the Queen Raws 52 mph.
A Wind Advisory is in effect for Eddy and Culberson Counties from 8 AM MST - 5 PM MST today. Westerly winds are forecast to become sustained at around 30-35 mph with gusts near 50 mph. Some higher gusts will be possible over and near the foothills and mountains.
Areas of blowing dust may also lower the visibility in a few places. This will be especially true over and near exposed or freshly plowed farmland, fields, lots and construction sites. Sudden drops in the visibility to less than one mile will be possible in these areas, so drivers please use caution when approaching these normally dust prone areas.
Along with the high winds and near record-to-record high temperatures, comes Widespread Critically Dangerous Fire Weather Conditions today. A Red Flag Warning will be in effect for all of E/SE/S NM and most of W TX today. Please don't toss your cigarettes out of your vehicles, or drive them off maintained roadways and into grassy or brushy areas. Today will not be a good day to be involved in any type of outdoor activity that involves the use of sparks or flame. Please don't burn your fence lines, bar ditches, weeds, grass, or trash. Any fire that should accidentally start will have the potential to rapidly spread and grow in the high winds and extremely dry conditions.
A dry Pacific cold front will arrive around sunset this evening. Strong gusty westerly winds will shift around to the north and northeast with the frontal passage. These northerly winds are expected to gust up to around 45 mph, or perhaps higher in a few locations. Friday will be much cooler across the local area with our high temperatures only making it up into the 50's.
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