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!

Monday, April 08, 2019

Severe Weather in the South Today and Hurricane Season 2019 Waiting in the Wings. Hurricane Gracie Some Hurricane History.

Hurricane Gracie 1959.
Remember that for later please :)

Today's weather issue is shown below.
My best friend says we don't have problems anymore.
We have "issues"
So let's go with that.

Keep your eye on the radar guys.

atl_ir4_sat_tropicalindex_anim.gif (640×480)

Chance for severe weather in the South today as temperatures soar close to the 80 degree mark and clash with weather that's not so hot. Everyone in the shaded area is on watch for severe weather that can pop up as fast an a summer thunderstorm or pollen blowing off a pine tree when a helicopter gets too close.

Thunderstorms may pop. 
Some may pop violently.
Many hate that graphic above.
Because the word "slight" is hazy....
It makes you think nothing to worry on..
I mean "slight" means barely there to many.
It only takes one tornado to develop...
in the same way hurricane predictions fall ... the wayside when two majors strike the coastline.
It's really stupid for people to say "slight" or "below normal"
Severe weather may happen.
Hurricanes happen.
Speaking of Hurricanes I'm talking on Gracie today.
Gracie was the strongest hurricane since Hazel to make landfall.
That's her eye up there staring down at you.

Gracie was a funny storm in that most people don't remember her unless they are older and live along the South Carolina coastline. Somehow this Category 4 hurricane got lost in the shuffle of the damage from Hazel in 1954 five years before and the overwhelming scope of damage from Hurricane Donna a year later when Donna ravaged a good part of the Eastern Seaboard. Everyone always talks on those early 1960 hurricanes such as Donna, Betsy, Cleo, Flora and yet few seem to remember Gracie. Actually 1959 was a bumper year for major hurricanes and it led right into 1960 that produced the infamous Donna. Check out the video below and wanna add here.... it's possible for us to see similar early season storms form for a variety of reasons.

Worth noting 1959 was a busy season.

A wide variety of small storms and big storms.
Gracie was big... a Category 4 hurricane.

Gracie had one of those tracks a storm tracker loves.
Forms close in and can't decide where it wants to go.
It makes the tracking so much more fun.
Talking tracking as in years ago people tracked.
Now we just look on our App or check online.
Each advisory came out six hours apart.
Three if there were watches and warnings up.
You wrote down the coordinates.
Rushed over to your handy dandy hurricane map...
(all the gas stations and news stations gave them out for free)
And you marked a new dot on the map.
God I love maps.
But Gracie was way before my time.
And living in Florida few people talked about her.
So I forget about her sometimes.
Few who were in her path of destruction forgot.
She was one of the ones that made memories.

This is what video looked like before your cell phone :)
Home movies put to music.

You think we hype storms now?
Wow nothing like news reels.
A "traveling catastrophe" 

Who remembers Hugo?
Yeah we've come along way since the 1950s.

Then they were excited to get a good radar picture of the eye.
By the 80s we were watching them travel from Africa.
Traveling West towards the Islands....
... slowly coming together.

Everything was slow then....
Waiting on new coordinates to be released.
Watching each new image from the satellite to come in...

Hugo hit South Carolina like it was the first time in forever.
And in ways it was ....
People moved in from places up north...
... people who thought hurricanes go to Miami I guess.
Miami watched and sighed a breath of relief...
"A Carolina Storm" old timers said.

Great video there... 
I remember Hugo.
I remembered Hugo the whole night of Hurricane Andrew.
All of Miami remembered the images from Hugo.
Yet so few remember Gracie.

I have a lot of friends and I do mean friends as some are close personal friends who have been releasing their forecasts for this upcoming Hurricane Season. There's a lot to compare and contrast in them though they all show basically the same thing and that is Hurricane Season is coming sooner rather than later. Coastal cities may have to watch this year as they did last year because it's more likely storms will form close to land vs out in the Mid Atlantic region though that will most likely happen come August and September when the water warms up and the dust dries out. 

I'm really not up yet to talk on generalities and mention lots of abbreviations to try and sound all academic and meteorologically intellectual though I'm sure I will as the season progresses. I worked and lived in Academia and it gets boring in ways and it's not like standing on the beach feeling the wind, hearing the howl of a hurricane approaching or standing on rocks or on the hood of a car to get good pictures and data and feel the hurricane up close and personal. If you have not done that on a Florida beach with all the palm fronds pointing in one direction and the trees bending a little as palm trees do you really have not seen a hurricane in all it's glory. 

I know Texas gets them and the wind howls as the sand blows and the waves get all frothy underneath the legs the beach house is built upon and yes hurricanes happen in Cape Cod but it's just not the same. Hurricane Donna in New York and nearby regions took down age old oaks and poplars and flooding was the big story. Hurricane Gracie caused "issues" far inland once she was only a tropical storm and that's part of the life process of a hurricane after landfall. 

So in a few days or a week or so I'll post the various opinions but like the NWS graphic that says North Carolina may have a slight risk of severe weather they really are trying to warn you that weather may happen. Personally I'm not a big believer in El Nino being a huge factor deep into the hurricane season when hurricanes will happen. I think there's a flip going on and I am not yet sure how much of a flip will happen and whether we go back towards Neutral or lunge towards a La Nina but I do know current conditions warrant concern in coastal cities from hurricanes that form closer in ... much in the way Michael pulled it together closer in and much in the way Jeanne and Frances found their groove as they sniffed landfall and trying to write about whether it will be a "slightly above normal" or "slightly below normal season" isn't doing it for me just yet. 

This is not my favorite time of year though Mother Nature is putting on a beautiful show in the Carolinas of Spring color as azaleas are popping and dogwood is at it's prime, pollen is falling and cherry blossoms are in bloom. Tulips are pushing up through the ground at record rate and red seems to be a big color this year. Severe weather is possible across the South. The times they are a changing.

Stay tuned...... 
Remember while reading lots of articles that the media will put out it only takes one and hurricanes that form close to the coast like Michael or Katrina after hitting her warm water spot there after traipsing across South Florida as a weaker storm (that formed just off shore of Florida) did a whole lot of damage so I don't really want to hear lots of academic discussion on how the water is cooler than normal or that El Nino was officially announced after it had been here a long while and is showing signs of possibly leaving sooner rather than later.

Be prepared.
Pay attention.
Watch your local weather experts.
Follow along on social media.
I watch several sites personally.
I love checking in with Mike because he's always relevant. A man for all seasons :)

Hurricanes happen and so does severe weather ...whether it's a marginal risk or slight risk weather can and will happen.

Besos BobbiStorm
@bobbistorm on Twitter and Instagram. Follow me there for real time information.

Ps... Let's look back at 2018 because I think this season will be similar to 2018 in ways as the pattern has not changed that much overall and because of what I am seeing in April though things can change a lot before September as we all know. September Remember right? Anyone remember Alberto that made landfall early near where Hurricane Michael made landfall late in the season? Remember when Florence formed and was immediately written off by the experts as a "Fish Storm?" and remember when Leslie spun around randomly like a top that wouldn't stop spinning? Remember all the early preseason discussion on why 2018 could be a slower year than normal because of cooler waters in the MDR? Remember when indeed.

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