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, May 23, 2019

Dangerous Seasons. Tornadoes & Hurricanes. Heat Waves in the SE. Water Warming Up. Models Showing Tropical Problems.

Mike's main page shows us that... 
...that and he wants you to buy tee shirts.
Today is the last day for orders for the above shirts.
This weekend is a good time to buy hurricane supplies.
See the blue NHC "nothing happening" map above.
Nothing officially happening tropically speaking.
Tornadoes have been happening.
Will the tropics erupt early this year?
Most likely.

See that string of 90s... 
That's the weather in Raleigh this week.
Remnants of what was connected with Andrea are there..
they moved South while her "circulation" center moved North.
Or rather fell apart.
There's moisture down in the Caribbean.
If you're a tracker... you're watching it already.

atl_ir4_sat_tropicalindex_anim.gif (640×480)

Funny how the moisture hung around after Andrea died.

Not saying it's developing.
I'm saying it's still there.
And there's a lot of convection down there in the Carib.

Today though is all about tornadoes on the Plains.
So let's talk tornadoes first then come back to the tropics.

Understand the tornado chase season as many I know call it is a season that when it is in prime mode can go on for weeks. An outbreak that was expected on Sunday may show up on Tuesday or Wednesday and the only pattern is that the energy is pumping up from the Gulf of Mexico and very cold air that has produced May snow further to the North clashes and creates cyclonic twisters that trash people's lives. The goal is to get better at forecasting these tornadoes and give faster warning to people with more specific areas warned. There are no cones other than the cone like development of super cells on the satellite imagery. They suddenly begin exploding in the dark of the night and it looks much like the video below... hard to see, dangerous, threatening and slams into towns with very little warning other than an expansive tornado watch that covers three states.

The National Weather Service tries to keep up with it and put out warnings as they begin to develop and issues tornado warnings as they have been needed after putting a huge swath of an area into a tornado watch. And sometimes as they did this week they put out Particularly Dangerous Situation Warnings. Unlike afternoon thunderstorms in Miami these cells can fire late at night and create night time tornadoes that are hard to see in the dark unless lightning shows you what they look like rather than following their signatures from the radios. Not talking impressive pictures taken out on the planes under dark gray skies with bright green below and photogenic funnel clouds about to touch down near a small farm town. They are dangerous in all ways and similar to hurricanes in that they twist but a totally different beast as they spin up faster than the milk in your frother is ready to put into your coffee!

As good as we get when it comes to forecasting and monitoring the atmosphere we still have problems nailing down the details. That same problem extends to Hurricanes Forecasting as we are good at sniffing out development and while seeing the pattern that has existed and where and how he may change we know a high pressure ridge will steer it towards Florida or it could stay south of Cuba and make it into the Caribbean or it may be lifted North towards the Carolinas unless it clips the Outer Banks and swirls by on it's way out to sea. And what is worse than nailing down the exact track is our seeming inability to early on get intensity forecasting down. Yes, a hurricane may form but will it be a Category 1 or a Category 3? The devil is seriously in the details.

Years ago these monsoons came out of the Caribbean with little warning and made landfall along towns that were so obliterated they were never rebuilt in the Florida Panhandle with no more warning than people out on the Plains have as to when their town gets picked by destiny to suffer a direct hit from an EF4 tornado after days of what seemed like endless watches when nothing happened until suddenly something happened. In the old days that is how Hurricanes sliced through the Florida Keys on their way to another landfall somewhere in the Gulf of Mexico.

So when you hear people complain that "weather people can't ever get anything right" don't buy that story as you do not know the past of boom towns such as Indianola or Port St. Joe as they never really became as popular as Miami that somehow always seems to be able to rebuild itself after a direct hit from a landfalling Major Hurricane. Granted the real Major Hurricanes often stay away but over history they have taken brief vacations on their way somewhere else and slammed into the Greater Miami area with the same timely reoccuring threats that Moore Oklahoma gets and after you have been hit by one or two tornadoes or hurricanes in your lifetime you know when to take things seriously.

I'm talking on this now as we are heading early into what seems as if it will be a busy hurricane season delivering at least two and probably easily three major hurricanes. The areas close in such as Florida, the Southeast Coast and towns along the Gulf of Mexico need to heed any warnings and pay close attention. After several years of mediocre hurricane seasons we are back again dealing with your old fashioned normal, busy hurricane season. The problem with busy is where exactly they will make landfall. Lots of people like to toss out numbers such as "14 named storms and 3 major hurricanes" yet few show where they may happen while reminding you they can happen anywhere. Jim Williams of Hurricane City has always made "where" his bigger priority than "how many" and in truth that is really what people want to know because where they hit is more important than how many may form and stay far out in the Atlantic. Rob from puts out a map with locations that are shown to be more prone while reminding you hurricanes can and will make landfall anywhere in the overall region.

I agree totally with Rob and his map above.
I believe the West part of GOM is more open this year than last.

Where does this leave us exactly?
We track... we follow...we watch.
If you are here it's because you track tropical weather.
It is that basic.

Mike from is the ultimate tracker.
He will tell you that up front.
He won't call himself a professional meteorologist.
Sometimes he chases storms that show up close to home.
But basically he is a hurricane tracker.
And he shares that passion with his friends (fans) online.

After a run in with some tropical trouble with a gal in Savannah..
... who made fun of him on air.
I can't remember her name... it's not important.
He ran with the logo Drunk Donkey.
And again "official hurricane tracker"
And this here is really what binds us together.
We... track hurricanes.
Some of us chase and others of us research.
Some of us are professional meteorologists.
Some of us are amateur meteorologists.
And whether we use old fashion track maps or...
.....or handy dandy hurricane app.
We are all watching, waiting and tracking.

Some of us do it with a bit of fun and humor.
That's good.
Lord knows there's enough tragedy out there waiting.
Many of us use humor when dealing with possibilities.
All of us go into serious action when the threat is real.

So you'll see strands like this online often.

What do you learn from tweets such as this...
There possibly viable waves out there....
There is a huge high across Florida and the GOM currently.
When storms dig down the high often rearranges itself.

There are models that on several runs have produced hurricanes.
Usually this time of year we consider those models broken.
I'm a little broken from temperatures in the 90s in the Carolinas.
It's May not June nor is it July.

That's a burnt up white magnolia :(
They are supposed to be velvet white this time of year.
The sun is so hot, they bloomed early.
Not when they are supposed to bloom....
...the result is a burnt white magnolia flower.

Everything in theory has a season.
When things heat waves descend in May....
Magnolias take a hit.
When the water is this warm early on... can support tropical activity.
Even if it's late May... or early June.
This year June may not be too soon.

Some models show hurricane forming and moving North...
Out of the Caribbean up towards Florida and the Carolinas.
On another run it may show a strong Tropical Storm.
Long term models are like clues...
..pieces of a puzzle.

What they show you is.....
The potential is there for something to develop.
Just what it is ain't exactly clear.

Models such as this are currently not reliable.
But they indicate it's possible something will form.
Maybe not that strong.
Maybe not exactly there...
Oh and it crosses over Florida from the Gulf..

It's just a model.
But it's not impossible to get hurricanes in June.
So stay tuned.

When it's 92 in the shade in Raleigh in June.
It can suck tropical trouble up out of the tropics early.
Logical targets are Gulf of Mexico.
But sometimes mother nature isn't logical.
Will proof this again later.
But it's still preseason right?
I'm packing... got places to go today :)

Stay tuned. 
Besos BobbiStorm
@bobbistorm on Twitter and Instagram.

Ps... Sometimes Mother Nature can be a real bitch.
And when it's this hot... only one place to go.
Some beach... some where...
(lots of Memorial Day Weekend supplies are good for ..
...hurricane supplies. Buy some... keep them close by)

As for me... I'm getting Israeli BBQ food tonight!
At a beach..........somewhere.


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