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Winter weather, wind advisories set for area

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 WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM 9 PM THIS EVENING TO 9 AM MDT SUNDAY...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN ALBUQUERQUE HAS ISSUED A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY FOR SNOW AND BLOWING SNOW... WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM 9 PM THIS EVENING TO 9 AM MDT SUNDAY.

* SNOW ACCUMULATIONS... 4 TO 8 INCHES OF SNOW IS EXPECTED ACROSS THE SAN JUAN... JEMEZ AND SANGRE DE CRISTO MOUNTAINS... WHILE 1 TO 3 INCHES IS EXPECTED ACROSS THE UPPER RIO GRANDE VALLEY. GREATEST ACCUMULATIONS WILL BE ON WEST FACING SLOPES ABOVE 8000 FEET.

* TIMING... SNOW WILL BEGIN ACROSS THE HIGH TERRAIN THIS EVENING... THEN RAIN WILL TURN TO SNOW ACROSS THE UPPER RIO GRANDE AFTER MIDNIGHT. SNOW WILL CONTINUE THROUGH MID MORNING SUNDAY.

* WINDS... WEST 20 TO 30 MPH WITH GUSTS NEAR 45 MPH OVERNIGHT.

* SNOW LEVELS... TEMPERATURES WILL BE COLD ENOUGH FOR SNOW AT ALL LOCATIONS BY MIDNIGHT.

* LOCAL IMPACTS... SNOW AND BLOWING SNOW WILL SIGNIFICANTLY REDUCE VISIBILITIES. ROADS MAY BECOME SNOWPACKED AND ICY WITH WINTER DRIVING CONDITIONS. TRAVEL IS DISCOURAGED.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY FOR SNOW AND BLOWING SNOW MEANS THAT VISIBILITIES WILL BE RESTRICTED DUE TO A COMBINATION OF FALLING AND BLOWING SNOW.

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... SNOW RETURNING TO NORTHERN NEW MEXICO TONIGHT...

.A DYNAMIC WEATHER SYSTEM WILL USHER MUCH COLDER TEMPERATURES INTO THE LAND OF ENCHANTMENT THIS AFTERNOON AND EVENING. AS SNOW LEVELS DROP... RAIN WILL TURN TO SNOW LATE THIS EVENING AND OVERNIGHT WITH MODERATE ACCUMULATIONS EXPECTED. SNOW AND BLOWING SNOW WILL REDUCE VISIBILITIES ACROSS THE NORTHERN MOUNTAINS AND UPPER RIO GRANDE VALLEY. THOUGH THE SNOW WILL LARGELY END SUNDAY MORNING... STRONG WINDS WILL CONTINUE THROUGH THE DAY WITH AREAS OF BLOWING SNOW PERSISTING.

... WIND ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM NOON TODAY TO 9 PM MDT THIS EVENING...

* LOCATION... LARGE PORTION OF WESTERN AND CENTRAL NEW MEXICO... INCLUDING THE ALBUQUERQUE AND SANTA FE METRO AREAS.

* WINDS... SOUTHWEST 25 TO 35 MPH WITH GUST OF 45 TO 50 MPH.

* TIMING... WINDS WILL INCREASE THIS MORNING AND PEAK DURING THE AFTERNOON AND EARLY EVENING HOURS. THOUGH WINDS WILL DECREASE SOME SATURDAY NIGHT... WINDS WILL STRENGTHEN AGAIN LATE SUNDAY MORNING THROUGH SUNDAY AFTERNOON.

* VISIBILITY... AREAS OF BLOWING DUST ARE LIKELY WITH THE POTENTIAL FOR SIGNIFICANT VISIBILITY LIMITATIONS BELOW 3 MILES.

* LOCAL IMPACTS... DRIVERS OF VANS... CAMPERS... TRAILERS... AND OTHER HIGH-PROFILE VEHICLES SHOULD BE PREPARED FOR STRONG WINDS... ESPECIALLY ON NORTHWEST TO SOUTHEAST ORIENTED ROADS. AREAS OF BLOWING DUST MAY BE ACCOMPANIED BY SIGNIFICANT REDUCTIONS IN VISIBILITY... MAKING TRAVEL DIFFICULT.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

MOTORISTS SHOULD EXERCISE CAUTION WHILE TRAVELLING. SUDDEN GUSTS OF WIND MAY CAUSE YOU TO LOSE CONTROL OF YOUR VEHICLE. EXTRA ATTENTION SHOULD BE GIVEN TO CROSS WINDS.

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... LONG DURATION STRONG TO POTENTIALLY DAMAGING WINDS FOR PORTIONS OF NEW MEXICO THIS WEEKEND...

.A POTENT UPPER LEVEL LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM AND ASSOCIATED PACIFIC COLD FRONT WILL SWEEP EAST ACROSS NEW MEXICO LATER TODAY AND TONIGHT... WITH STRONG WINDS FORECAST BOTH AHEAD OF AND BEHIND THE FRONT. WHILE STRONG WINDS ARE FORECAST AREA WIDE... THE GREATEST POTENTIAL FOR DAMAGING WINDS WILL BE FROM THE CENTRAL MOUNTAINS ACROSS THE EASTERN PLAINS. STRONG WINDS MAY EVEN PERSIST INTO MONDAY. THE STRONG WINDS WILL CREATE AREAS OF BLOWING DUST WITH THE LIKELIHOOD FOR SIGNIFICANT VISIBILITY RESTRICTIONS.