Hurricane Rina.... Steady Solid Intensification
Hurricane Rina is currently looking beautiful with excellent outflow in all directions. She has been under minimal shear and yet her appearance doesn't show many ill effects from the shear.
Another interesting thing about Rina is she seems to be moving left of the program, she's missing her marks and they may have to adjust her once again at 11. Will see. At 8PM they said she was meandering. She is still meandering westward. Then again many of the models showed her moving west and then eastward.
"..RINA MEANDERING WESTWARD...EXPECTED TO BECOME A MAJOR HURRICANE TONIGHT..."
Look at the overall, bigger view of Rina with regard to the whole basin. Everything to the north of her blows off to the east. Where she goes over the next 48 hours will make a big difference where she goes in 90 hours. More so...where the front goes, how far it dips and how strong it is in relation to how strong Rina is after she does the Tango in Cancun. And, what if she hits south of Cancun and bounces off and bobbles around in the Caribbean longer and not taking her trip NE? Some models do have Rina doing a loop and staying down in the Carib until Lord only knows when. To complicate matters....the system to the ESE of Rina known as 97 has model support for intensification as Rina sort of falls apart. A really big "Hmnnnnnnnnn" which means got to see that one to believe it but hey it's October in the tropics...anything is possible. The water in that part of the Carib is by the way........REALLY HOT!
Would Rina really fall apart suddenly as some models show or intensify rapidly? She is about to tap into more moisture to her SE that should give her some more juice.
http://tropic.ssec.wisc.edu/real-time/mimic-tpw/natl/anim/latest72hrs.gif Juice Loop
As of 11pm there is still a lot of indecision and low confidence in what Rina will or won't do in the long term. Her present movement is to the west at 3 mph (no longer meandering, slowly moving west) and she is forecast to be a Category 3 storm at any time. There are two roads to travel. One road takes her NE towards Florida by riding up the frontal boundary. The other road keeps her looping around down in the Caribbean.
What do I think?
I think if this front is going to sweep through Cuba then it will pick her up. The discussion below is from the official discussion of the Caribbean Weather Outlook.
A COLD FRONT WILL EXTEND FROM WESTERN CUBA TO 12N84W SAT AND SUN. LOW PRES MAY FORM
AHEAD OF THE FRONT IN THE SW CARIBBEAN THU AND LINGER THROUGH
Hard to say for sure. One thing I can say for now is she looks about as good as it gets and shows little sign of problems from the shear that was over her today. Amazingly, beautiful storm to watch spin on satellite imagery.
Time will tell... but what will tell soonest is the Gulfstream Jet that is taking samples of air around Rina and far away from Rina to which way the wind is really blowing in the atmospheric river that guides tropical systems. With the info from that wonderful forecasting tool the next model runs should clear up the long term picture.
For now...if you live in the South Florida area expect very gusty winds on Friday Night and Saturday Morning. Gusty as in very breezy, not quite sustained tropical storm force winds but a stormy period. Now, IF she comes further to the north we could have a real problem. Anyone south of Tampa should pay attention to this storm...that is the official line. Key West and Havana should get serious storm conditions.
More tomorrow when we get back good info from the Gulfstream Jet.
Sweet Tropical Dreams
Ps...Though the official track is to the south of my location I am very in the cone zone tonight...