Hurricane Harbor

A writer and a tropical muse. A funky Lubavitcher who enjoys watching the weather, hurricanes, listening to music while enjoying life with a sense of humor and trying to make sense of it all!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

ULL in Atlantic West of Florida -- Worth Watching

12 Hours Ago:

Same ULL 12 hours later... NOW. Note how the dark area has been filled in with convection which is growing and may continue growing as the day progresses. 

Something's going on there and it is worth watching! Nothing else to distract you tropically unless you want to watch the storms in the Pacific.

So, this morning's tropical ramble is a heads up to continue watching the evolving ULL in the Atlantic west of Florida. It's location and size warrants us to watch it... even though nothing may develop. The reason we watch is twofold. It's compelling, it grabs your attention and it's hard not to watch. It's also mesmerizing in it's way. And, the second reason to watch is that sometimes storms do develop from these close in systems, old frontal boundaries, Upper Level Lows working their way down through the levels grabbing moisture where they can to suddenly transition to tropical and when they do so they are not 1,200 miles away in the Atlantic from a Cape Verde Wave that is going to miss the islands but they become a system that is up close and very personal way too close for comfort. They happen.... like Grace mixing it up with all the other factors that brought you The Perfect Storm.

Vinnie was another one like that, check out Hurricane Vince.

There have been many hurricanes, more than we realize that formed in non-conventional ways because the problem with Hurricane History is we only remember the big storms, the most common patterns and we forget how quirky the evolution of some storms can be. We also only read about them after the start to develop and we don't read about the wave that worked it's way west across the entire Atlantic from the Cape Verde Islands unable to ever pull itself together due to many factors and then finally south of Cuba... it finally gets it's groove on and turns into Hurricane Camille. The storm charts start with the storm forming in the SW Carib, but it started in Africa. It might have even started in the Indian Ocean, as many Cape Verde Waves come off of Africa and can be watched before they even build up over the Congo... over the Indian Ocean.


Trivia question...did you know the NHC was tracking 2 storms that formed on the same day. Debbie 1969 went out to sea... the Atlantic was not a user friendly place for waves to develop in the Summer of 69.

Look at the Labor Day Storm of 1935. It didn't "just form in the Bahamas" but it blew up there.

It's a slow process sometimes and we forget where the moisture originally came from to form a "tropical wave" ...

My point... we often forget the origins, the beginnings of the mess we find ourselves one ever goes back to the beginning and no one ever studies "history" vs the "science" of weather.

Models, tropical ones...not Victoria Secrets take that into consideration while making predictions however.... sometimes you get a year that does not fit one pattern... like this year. It's a transitional year. Transitioning to El Nino, however El Nino like Alzheimer's is only diagnosed completely after the fact. That's not forecasting, that's diagnosing while looking in the rear view mirror.

Hurricane Forecasting is not a perfect science, it's a science in progress....and we are getting so much better now at it than we did years back when the 1935 Labor Day Storm "BLEW UP IN THE BAHAMAS" from nowhere.  It wasn't from nowhere, it has a slow evolution and the ingredients did not ripen until that point on the globe... it didn't just pop up from the Bermuda Triangle.

Hurricane Betsy in 1965 barely survived a very slow, tortured birth and early childhood. Like Andrew it almost didn't make it.  One of the best, detailed discussion of the formation of Hurricane Betsy is in a paper published long ago. It's the behind the scenes story..not the one you read on the major sites that will tell you how much damage Betsy did in Florida and Louisiana. I own a copy, let's call it a gift from someone at the NHC... fantastic reading.

History repeats. It does not repeat often with the big ones. It repeats enough that the coastline of North America over time has been formed, carved away by the currents of the Gulf Stream and storms that formed and worked there way north and east out to sea...or that slammed into some small town.

This is why meteorologists are always looking for that "close in" development that could suddenly turn tropical. Maybe this will... maybe it won't, but it's possible. Or let me rephrase that... in any given year, on any given day anything is possible in the tropics. If you don't believe that, explain Hurricane Alice that developed on December 30th, 1954 in the Caribbean.

Keep watching... there has been an ongoing hand off of energy from the moisture over Florida and possibly the region to the north which is the remains of the old frontal boundary lingering just off the coast of Myrtle Beach and that moisture is getting slowly entrained into the ULL out there spinning that the NHC sems to be ignoring ...waiting to see if it's worth writing about or circling with yellow.

Big kudos to the people online who discuss these events and stick their necks out talking about them rather than writing "No Tropical Development for the Next 24 Hours" and really appreciate sites like and others that are loaded with the little data that people like me love to feast on for breakfast.  

Note there is a small purple circle south of the Carolinas. A slim possibility, yet one does exist. Those  are the things you find on Spaghetti Models. Jim on Hurricane City with his Tropical Update. They delve deeper, than the average Moe when looking at the tropics... to give us a heads up on what is happening.

They know... history repeats itself. History always repeats itself... 

Something definitely evolving....then again.... it might fall apart.

Keep watching...especially if you live in Florida or The Bahamas ;) <-- enjoy am in a forgiving funny mood ;)

Besos Bobbi


Post a Comment

<< Home