Posted by wxrisk | GENERAL,HURRICANE SEASON 2012 | Monday 29 August 2011 9:00 pm

1615  29  AUGUST   2011…

Look  I  do not have power back either  and  judging  by   how many major trees  are  in top of  and twisted   in Power lines around   this part of   chesterfield county… well it going to be a   WHILE.   So I  dont know  how to say  what I have to say.   Already I    have been accused  of   engaging in  hype.  But those of you  who think I am   either are new to this  site  and dont know  me and   are   missing  some key points.

Look I was   NOT guy saying  ” it might  even rain on Saturday aug 27 in central VA”.   I am not the guy saying to  folks in Hampton Roads on Wednesday night  and  early  Thursday morning   (AUG 24-25)  that ”Irene   was   not going to be a big deal in  hampton Roads.   And I am sure as hell NOT  the guy (guys)    who issued  Hurricane Warning  for   friggin Philadelphia and  NYC for   god’s sale.   All I am…. is the guy    who  got it right   days out  and didnt forecast  a landfall in Savannah   GA either.  So please    get a  clue  and dont talk  to ME    about  HYPE!

   THE  GOOD NEWS     the  long LABOR  day weekend   looks  not  just    great but firggin  great… wow… sunny  skies warm– but NOT hot— temps   low humidity.   There will be a cold front  coming into the    all of the   Northeast –from NC  to Maine   which will  bring some showers and storms….  as  we  move into the  AUTUMN 2011.

TD  12      SOON  TO BE    KATIA.
 Yeah  this one   has potential. Its BIG  and its  way south  at   9  degrees North Latitude   and it IS  going  to  develop  into  major cape  Verde   Hurricane.   It is going  to be the main focus of  east coast weather  for some time . 

The  12z AUG 28  run of the  Euro  developed  TD   into a   cat  4/5  cane  near the  SE  Bahamas   SEPT7  as a   trough and cold front   comes into the  Great Lakes  and Northeast.  The   0z  EURO   AUG 29 run this  morning  showed a MASSIVE  trough    moving into the   eastern  US… real  Autumn weather  which   IF correct   Knock  KATIA   waaaaay out to sea.

 so far  so  good.  Now here  comes  the 12z    AUG  MODELS…

 The  12z  GFS    re-curves the   cane   EARLY    so that it  turns  N near Bermuda    races north and merges into a  big  Ocean Low off  of southeast    Canada.    This seems to support  the  OTS   out  to sea solution.

 But  keep in mind  that the GFS– good for shit– model  suffers  from Model  resolution  problem after 180   hours so….   this  track   is without  any value or merit whatsoever. 

 The 12z   GFS  ensembles are VASTLY   DIFFERENT and speaks  for themselves   …. and do  NOT show a clear case  for   OTS  or a HIT or something   CLOSE  to the coast   that   might    impact  say cape Hatteras  and / or cape Cod.

The   12z   tuesday AUG 29  run of the   Euro is well SCARY.  It has KATIA   tracking    Just  NE then N of  Puerto Rico BUT also close enough to    slide Under the  East coast cold front/ trough in the Jet stream.  This  Places KATIA 
as monsterous   category 5  hurricane  near the southeast Bahamas .


So if the cold front/   trough  in the Jet stream misses    KATIA  SEPT  5  she keeps    heaing  into    to the  se  US.

If one  wishes to use the  ANALOG method   for  KATIA …if one looks at TC in  he  1st week of   SEPT  and where they have gone/ tracked   one can use this  image.
    In looking at the  top 10  analogs   to  TD 12/ Katia  position   only  3 of the 10  were  Total  US Misses. 

Now folks this is TIMING  problem.  Just because the euro  show KATIA   being  EXACTLY  at the  right  position  so the cold front/ trough misses  her does not mean she  will be missed .  There are  ton of  variables   to keep  in mind   but the issue  is NOT  decided.


Posted by wxrisk | GENERAL,HURRICANE SEASON 2012 | Friday 26 August 2011 6:30 pm

1830 EDT 26 AUG 2011

Every hurricane is different and every hurricane has its own subtleties and nuance and hurricane Irene is no different. Several times today hurricane Irene tried to rebuild a deep wall of inner convection but it’s clear that the dry air being pulled into the hurricane from the western side and from the southeast states has worked its way in and is preventing the storm from RE strengthening even though it is over the gulf stream.

In fact there are not many cases of a what seems to be a category 4 hurricane with a significantly different and lower Wind field …. crossing the Gulfstream and not regenerating in some capacity.

Over the past several days a lot of weather models have shown that in these last 12 to 18 hours before landfall Irene was or is going to regenerate. Clearly the hurricane center does not think so and looking at the information that I can see it doesn’t look like Irene is going to regain any lost intensity.

Obviously this has a significant impact on the forecast because my premise has been that Irene was gonna make landfall as either a strong category 3 or category 4 hurricane.   On the other hand it is pretty clear that Irene is still moving due North along the 77th west longitude line and so far has not made any turn to the NNE.   If Irene does not turn she will crash into Wilmington North Carolina which is not the location selected for landfall by me or by 99% of all the meteorologists on the East Coast.   I still anticipate that turn will occur and a landfall somewhere around Morehead city Saturday morning.

I continue however to disagree with the track once IRENE makes landfall.   Again all the short range models continue to show that Irene is going to come out across Virginia Beach or eastern Norfolk  and NOT over Nags Head NC…. And by Saturday evening IRENE will make be located very close to or just off shore of Wallops island Virginia. From there most of the model data takes Irene close to or just offshore of Ocean city Maryland and Cape May ecame a New Jersey.



However because the GFS Model is 50 miles further east so that is  the official forecast track . I am not gonna change the track now we  will see   which   foroecast  track  is going to end  up being correct. And that 50 Miles makes a BIG difference with the wind forecast for eastern and central Virginia.

At this point it is time simply to sit back and watch Irene come in and see who gets hit how hard and where she tracks. The forecasting process is now over for North Carolina eastern Maryland and Virginia.

Most of my focus has been here in the lower Middle Atlantic region and I have not spent a lot of time in the big cities of the northeast.  That being said I was completely unaware until this morning that hurricane warnings had been issued for the city of Philadelphia and interior portions of Western New Jersey and far Northern Delaware.   That seems to me to be a little over the top…. And that is probably going to cause a pretty negative reaction with the public.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++0730  EDT 26  AUG 2011

 First the weakening … Um what? I dont see that at all. Over the past 3 days all of the Model data I have seen showed that at  THIS  point in time Irene ‘s winds would NOT be as strong as they could be given the Pressure of 942 mb. At 5am NHC did say that some model data STILL some SIGNIFICANT winds strenghtening is POSSIBLE before landfall.  I agree

Turn to the East? ….Um what!? so far I see NO sign of that.   A slight bend to the NNE has been expected …in Fact Irene had better turn to the NNE today or she will crash into Wilmington NC. In other words the forecast has NNE track today.

The 00z GFS again has landfall West of Hatteras near Moorehead city then bends Irene to the East so perhaps this is the basis for saying the track has shifted to the east. The 0z GFS has the turn to the NNE AFTER landfall in NC which tkaes the Eye over Nags Head and east of Va beach.

The 6z GFS and the 0z Euro are INDENTICAL at Irene’s Landfall… WEST of cape Hatteras. The 0z Euro shows Irene going OVER VA beach and Cape Henry then along va eastern shore and over or JUST east of Wallops island and Ocean City MD then over of Just offshore — buy 25 miles ) Cape May NJ.

The 6z GFS is Tad further east but that is Model   COLD   Bias     kickinf again.    The  Models   at  miday  today- the 12z Models — IMO will be the last run of any Model data that will be useful diwn here in VA NC  MD DE . After 4pm today for VA and NC it will be NOWCASTING time.    Of course for NJ NYC Long island and southeastern New England that is not the case.

The 0z and 6z GFDL are also shows Landfall well to the west of Hatteras and over Elizabeth City.
Later on I will issue a check list of things to watch as Irene closes in.

1630  EDT  25  AUG 2011

In a lot of ways it feels a somewhat empowering or liberating to see everybody else to scramble to catch up to the forecasted that I have been talking about since Monday as a real possibility. Just 24 and 48 hours ago… I was out there by myself alone in the woods so to speak and now suddenly I look what the weather god.       Of course I am not really and I have had plenty of busted forecasts but the one thing that I try and focus on is the actual science of meteorology … which is something not everybody in the weather business does ( and that is especially true in the TV weather business).   For those  of you who are  nNew to   I  only   sound the proverbial alarm  when I see " IT"  coming.   I am NOT a hypster.   There will  be weather events  when I say  NOPE  its  not  going to happens that way. 

   Most of my income   is  from    ENERGY  and  from GRAIN   commodites  / weatehr forecasts  … not just for the USA  but for   South America  Brazil    Russia    Ukraine   Europe   China    India and  Australia.  

 In southeast VA . the weather folks at WAVY TV 10 were doing their best to make sure NO one had any need to worry and simply Parroted the NWS forecast. Why worry simply because there is a category 4 Hurricane coming to the Outerbanks and passing close to Hampton Roads ? Just some gusty winds some gusty winds…..

The data overnight was MUCH further west.   Yet even then the early morning Thursday NWSAKQ discussion finally conceded that the model guidance was "SLIGHTLY more west than before." You read analysis like that and think "welcome to 12 hrs ago". The data overnight was NOT just slightly west. That was the case Wednesday afternoon and evening. It was MUCH further west.        Imagine the surprise and the dancing  that WAVY TV 10   weather folks  had to do this morning when NWS had a Hurricane watch out for Northeast NC and Tropical storms conditions likely for all of se Virginia Saturday and Saturday Night.

 FINALLY this Thursday  afternoon WWBTV TV 12 here in central VA has upped their Richmond Forecast to SOME rain — recall he went for NO rains for central VA on Saturday all day Wednesday and Wednesday night –  and   to 20-40 MPH with some locally heavy rains. That is word for word NWS 4PM forecast.   Based on the Model data that is an extremely timid forecast.  


The midday weather models continue to show a ominous trend as we get closer and closer to the landfall hurricane Irene. One of the basic and most important rules we your forecasting weather is that weather models are much less accurate at six days out then they are at two days out.

 It follows then that as you get closer and closer to a weather event the weather models should move in closer agreement towards each other and towards one final solution and in this case however it is happening. The brand new and hot off the presses 12z or d midday GFS model has again shown a SHIFT TO THE WEST and is very close to the ominous and scary looking European model we saw very early Thursday morning and again on Wednesday afternoon .

 The new GFS model takes the eye of hurricane Irene well to the west of Cape Hatteras making landfall over More head city. That is a significant change from what the GFS is showing early this morning .    The GFS model now takes the eye over southeastern Virginia — Hampton Roads —which again is a significant change from what the GFS is showing early this morning.    It then takes hurricane Irene through the lower Chesapeake Bay and across the lower Virginia and Maryland eastern shore…. which again is significantly further to the west than what the previous runs of the GFS model was showing.     The GFS has hurricane Irene weakening as it parallels the southern New Jersey Coast and makes landfall over far Western Long Island .     Again this is significantly further to the west.

In every instance the European model has been showing this track for the past 4 runs…. and it is this sort of superior performance which is why knowledgeable and experienced meteorologists know that the European model is vastly superior to the GFS model.

It is likely that hurricane watch will be extended into all of Southeast Virginia as well as the lower Virginia and Maryland Eastern shore by 5:00 PM this afternoon.

 It is likely that tropical storm watch or Hurricane watch could be extended as far west as interstate 95 in Central Virginia and eastern NC. Conditions look a lot worse for the eastern portions of North Carolina especially east of interstate 95 as well.

 The impact of this Hurricane track is going to have a significant affect upon the U.S. economy if the Insurance losses are indeed as high $50 Billion dollars.

The worst portion the storm for Eastern North Carolina will be occurring on Saturday.
For southeastern Virginia it moves in Saturday afternoon continues Saturday night and ends early Sunday morning.
For central and eastern interior Virginia the worse part comes and Saturday afternoon continues Saturday night ending Sunday morning.
And for the northeast US the worst portion of the event will be on Sunday.

It is tempting to use hurricane Isabel in 2003 as some sort of measuring stick since it was a significant event in most people’s lives over Eastern North Carolina …southeastern and Central Virginia… and the lower Maryland Eastern shore areas.

However there are some differences here.    Isabel came in from the ocean in a southeast to northwest heading… From Morehead city to Richmond. It was a middle intensity category 2 hurricane that weakened to a category 1 as it reached North Carolina border.    But on the other hand much of eastern and Central Virginia as well as Northeast North Carolina was on the stronger eastern side of the system. In addition the tree damage was extensive because of the excessively wet late summer and early autumn pattern of 2003 produce saturated ground conditions which are made it a lot easier for large trees to come out because of strong winds.      Irene will be stronger by far BUT Central Virginia will definitely be on the western side so it is kind of a tradeoff.


The following forecast is going to be based upon the assuming that the current track will verify AND that Irene will be a strong category 3 or weak category 4 at the time of impact. information is going to verify.

It should be noted that at 220 pm the 12z Thursday afternoon run of the European model has now come out and it is even more stunning in its ferocity with regard to hurricane Irene then the last several runs.     The model takes hurricane Irene as a category 4 hurricane showing a   MSLP around 940mb as it makes landfall in Morehead City then moves over Elizabeth City –losing very little strength because of low swamplands over Eastern North Carolina tracks — then tracks over Norfolk Virginia. From there Irene bends NNE tracking over Wallops island / ocean City MD and making another landfall at Cape May New Jersey as a category 2 hurricane and eventually passing over NYC as a category 1 hurricane on Sunday afternoon.

 This is a dangerous and historic track far exceeding the intensity of any hurricane in Hampton roads and last 100 years.    Hurricane Donna did not pass directly over Hampton roads in 1960 but instead tracked over Nags head and the northern outer banks of North Carolina and then headed NNE paralleling the East coast. The track here is similar but its shift to the west by 50 miles which is the European Model has Irene crossing through Hampton roads and the lower portion of the Chesapeake Bay and the lower Virginia eastern shore.

 There is No other word to describe the European model depiction of this hurricane for Northeast North Carolina southeastern Virginia ….the central and lower portions of the Chessy Bay and the lower Delmarva as anything short of catastrophic. The European model implies sustained hurricane force winds as far west as Richmond and the European model is extremely wet showing large areas of excessively heavy rains well to the Western Richmond greater than 5 inches. The European model track brings in a large area of Hurricane conditions that exceeds what was seen by Isabel …by a large margin.

 For the time bring I am NOT going to go 100% with the European solutions….


Hurricane Irene is going to be the strongest and largest hurricane to hit the entire outer banks of North Carolina from Morehead city to Corolla since mighty and historic hurricane Donna in 1960. That Hurricane brought 120 MPH sustained winds to all of the North Carolina outer banks for over 6 hours. As this system comes up from the south its large wind field out of the east and southeast ill really pile up the water up against the Outer Banks . In addition water in the sounds will also pile up against the western side of the NC sounds into locations such as Elizabeth City Edenton Washington and New Bern.

Over land in Eastern North Carolina winds will 60-80 mph with some higher gusts. By the time you reach interstate 95 in Eastern North Carolina conditions will not be as bad . Winds over Raleigh NC could reach 50 MPH but areas just to the east such as Wilson and Rocky Mount could see winds to 60 ot 70 MPH in gust

Conditions over all of eastern NC will be significantly worse than what the expanse of Isabel 2003.



Given how threatening hurricane Irene is and how unbelievably bad most of the TV forecast were in southeastern Virginia and Northeast North Carolina a lot of these TV stations are going to look awfully stupid today as they have to backtrack and start warning everybody about something which yesterday they said was not going to be a big deal.

 Again if we make the assumptions about the track and intensity of Irene will be correct then for all of Hampton roads and the lower portions of the Chesapeake Bay and the far Virginia low eastern shore this would be the worst hurricane since the Chesapeake Bay hurricane of 1933 and possibly the worst hurricane 100 years for that area.

 As the hurricane comes up from the south and passes just over or to the west of Cape Hatteras the circulation of the hurricane will produce prolonged easterly winds that will pile the water up into Virginia Beach and the southern portions of the Bay so that locations such as Oceanview in Norfolk could see massive flooding.  This also applies to locations such as Portsmouth the coastal areas of Suffolk Newport News Hampton Gloucester and Poquson.     There should be sustained winds around hurricane force for most of this area but across areas such as the Chesapeake Bay Bridge tunnel the Hampton roads bridge tunnel could see winds gusting up to near 100 miles per hour.

The rainfall will be close to what this area experience of hurricane Floyd 1999 with some areas getting up to 10 inches of rain.   This will cause widespread inland flooding but drought conditions are much drier them what we saw the hurricane Floyd hit in 1999 if so that is a compensating factor.    Conditions here will be Much worse than what this areas experienced with hurricane Isabel. 

EASTERN VA:        

 from Emporia to CHESTER to tappahannock to the Patuxent river naval air station in St Mary’s county Maryland…. Conditions here will either match or exceed what this area saw with hurricane Isabel.       Winds will range from 60 to 80 miles per hour and rainfall amounts will range from 5 to 10 ” There will likely significant power loss as well especially in area with a lot of tree areas but I do not into see tree damage to nearly the same degree tree damage as what we saw with Isabel in 2003. The areas near the bay will see the worst damage… Power Loss will be bad.

 RICHMOND to Fredericksburg and west into the PIEDMONT

 condition here will be about the same as what this areas saw with Isabel: 30 60 MPH winds with to 5 inches of rain . SOME power Loss.

Northeast VA- DC — western NORTHERN NECK to BWI TO PHL

 about the same as what this area saw from Isabel. Bay area flooding will be serious. Wind will be 30-60 mph higher Gusts over the bay areas. Rains of 3 to 6″ 

 EASTERN N.NECK into far southern MD -    

condition here will be about the same as what this areas saw with Isabel: 30 60 MPH winds with to 5+ inches of rain . SOME power Loss. Winds on area by the Bay or over the bay Gust to 75 mph.

SUSEX DEL into WICOMICO SOMERSET and WORCESTER and all of VA eastern shore. 

historic Hurricane … Possibly worst on record in 100 years. Winds INLAND 40-80 MPH… Ocean City and Lower VA counties 80-100 massive coastal flooding probably breaking all records. Power Loss up to 2 weeks    and this extended into Cape May County NJ as well.

OUT TO SEA ?? more like out of their Minds !!! IRENE THREAT INCREASING FOR VA NC e. MD

Posted by wxrisk | GENERAL,HURRICANE SEASON 2012 | Wednesday 24 August 2011 11:01 pm

2330    EDT  AUG 24

Over the past two days I have tried to maintain a fair sense of balance in figuring out what is going to happen to hurricane Irene and the computer models. Over on the Facebook page and on this web site I have tried to emphasize that there is more to forecasting meteorology — whether it’s hurricanes are snowstorms –than simply reading what ever these stupid models happened to tell you.

I have tried to show you that there was a level of uncertainty here and that many of these TV forecasters and the weather channel folks who kept insisting that IRENE was not going to be a significant hurricane threat for the East coast …are now in a whole lot of trouble.     Really folks forecasting in the day 3 to day 7 time frame is NOT guessing.    There IS a rational way to do it.     The model data has begun to shift back to the WEST as I thought it might on this Wednesday afternoon and evening.    However these facts really haven’t changed anybody’s forecast yet.

For example the meteorologist on NBC affiliate in Richmond Virginia suggested that Saturday there might not be any rain at all in Richmond and that it might just be a little wet and rainy in Southeast Virginia.     And over at WAVY TV 10 the local TV   weather Parrot there kept saying Not much was going to happen for se  VA.

I suppose looking strictly at the models from early Wednesday morning one could make that argument. But that is the problem. Your job as a meteorologist is more –or should be more –than simply regurgitating what ever piece of idiocy the model is showing. You are supposed to be able to see a little information past the computer model. I certainly can and I am a lot busier than they are.

It certainly is still possible that hurricane Irene may shift back to the east again and reduce the threat the Eastern North Carolina and Eastern Virginia as well as the lower Maryland Eastern shore. But the concern here is that this event is on Saturday and the forecast that this TV meteorologists was making was on Wednesday. Given the fact we have a category 4 hurricane approaching the east coast I just can not for the life of me figure out why anybody would say that it might not even rain in Richmond.

Later on Thursday I will make some detailed regional forecasts but many you have already seen some of these ideas /forecast r on the Face ook page.

This first image shows you the early WED morning or 0z GFS and as you can see the model continue to take hurricane Irene south and east of Cape Hatteras and out to sea.


However the vastly superior European model was not showing that . The Euero showed Irene tracking over very close to Cape Hatteras then paralleling the lower Virginia eastern shore coast and tracking much closer to Ocean city Maryland and Caoe May New Jersey. This would of course present much more serious threat to all southeastern Virginia the northern outer banks the lower Virginia and Maryland Eastern shores and came a New Jersey with potentially a historic hurricane.

Naturally even though the European model is vastly superior practically every single meteorologist up and down theREast coast that was on TV …  pretty much  ignored it.

At midday however the 12z GFS began to shift a little bit to the west

And the midday European continue to show a extremely ominous scenario with a track again one over Hatteras and pounding the hell out of Southeastern Virginia especially the lower Chesapeake Bay …the Virginia and Maryland Eastern shore.. is the coastal areas of Southern Delaware and the Delaware Bay and Southern New Jersey.

What the European model was showing was that Irene was slowing down and the cold front over the Midwest was coming in weaker. As a result the hurricane was bending to the north but NOT NNE along the coast. The threat continued up into NYC long island and much of Eastern New England.

The major change however began with the 18 Z GFS which followed the European model in showing of significantly closer to the coast track –which quite frankly surprised anybody. As you can see from the 18 Z run the eye wall tracks over Hatteras and fairly close to the Virginia Maryland Eastern shore. This can only be viewed as being supportive of the 12 Z European model. This is why the hurricane center at 11:00 PM discussion mentioned that the models are about 30 to 50 miles closer to the coast with hurricane Irene.


Even the dimwit in Central Virginia which was forecasting no rain for Richmond have decided to bring back the rain in the forecast but again said it might only been 1-2″ and the might be a few gusty winds but that was about it.

I have   seen the new 0z GFS and it is even more threatening as it continues to take Irene even closer and closer to the coast . It now shows the western eye wall actually making landfall against Morehead city. Keep in mind that this model only 24 HRS ago had Irene 100 miles southeast of Morehead city!!!!! However the GFS continued and now showed the IRENE passing west or just over Hatteras and that out across Nags head North Carolina tracking very close to Sandbridge Virginia and then paralleling the lower Virginia and Maryland Eastern shore’s perhaps fully obliterating Ocean city Maryland with a tremendous wind and storm five.

There is no doubt that up and down the East coast and especially in the mid Atlantic areas some of the incompetent TV mets and southeastern Virginia will have to make MAJOR changes. Mind you these are some of the same TV weather forecasters who forecasted no snow last xmas day and ended up with 12 to 18 inches.


Posted by wxrisk | GENERAL,HURRICANE SEASON 2012 | Tuesday 23 August 2011 11:30 pm

2300 EDT   AUG 23Earlier on Tuesday afternoon I issued this detailed statement over at the facebook/ wxrisk  page— which you can find on the   Discussion Tab   or  you can read   by licking on this LINK.  The  Discussion  was  my   views as of  Tuesday Morning   on how  I see the hurricane IRENE threat for Virginia North Carolina and Maryland based upon the Tuesday morning and midday weather models.!/topic.php?uid=129478830432717&topic=233

Also in case you missed it hears the link to the radio interview I did this morning on WRVA 1140 AM with  Jimmy Barrett.

This first image represents the early Tuesday morning European model and as you can see the European model was showing a historic hurricane hitting eastern North Carolina and southeast Virginia.  The European model showed a strong category 4  –almost a category  5 — hurricane making landfall between Morehead city  and in Wilmington NC   then tracking north very close to a I-95 through eastern North Carolina.     Once Irene reached   the  VA  NC state line  the  Model   showed IRENE  bending slightly to the NNE  and tracking very close to Williamsburg Virginia and then up into the northern portions of the Chesapeake Bay and near  Philadelphia.  This sort track of for a major East coast hurricane would be very unusual given what we typically see with an East coast hurricane track but it it would not be unprecedented.

The    early  Tuesday Morning   European  model  sceanrio  would  however bring  major damage to many areas and  would bring hurricane conditions across all of eastern Virginia as well as eastern North Carolina and much of eastern Maryland into southern New Jersey.  The KEY point here is that the European model developed IRENE to such intensity that even as IRENE weekend ….as all  eastern NC  hurircanes so  when  the  cross North Carolina    Irene  would still be a major event as it moved up into eastern Virginia and Maryland.   And that   is an important point because if hurricane Irene does NOT reach category 4 status but still takes this same sort track ….then conditions will not be nearly as severe as what the European model is showing.

I   tried to make that point clear in the radio broadcast —that as a ominous  ansd  extreme  as European model solution with hurricane Irene   was showing…  three important things MUST happen for that solution to work out.  FIRST  hurricane IRENE  reach category 4 status .   SECOND  Irene  has to make landfall between Morehead city and Wilmington  NC  THIRD   Irene has to track over eastern North Carolina and passed west of Norfolk VA .

The early morning GFS model did not agree and continues to show the hurricane IRENE  bending to the right.  This model continues to  show this trend because of the strong cold front the model is showing moving through the Midwest this weekend.   I am not a fan of the GFS model and I  have made that clear for number different reasons.  However that does not mean the GFS   could  NOT  be correct.    here have been  times  where the European model has gotten something wrong and the GFS model has been  correct.

But what the GFS model appears to be phasing the cold front and the upper air feature   (known as the trough )  with the IRENE into one big feature …..almost as if the model does not see  IRENE  as a hurricane but as some sort of coastal storm in the winter months.  If the GFS model did not have this bias  over doing this sort of phasing ….I would not be nearly as reluctant to accept the GFS solution in bending IRENE  to the coast.

On the midday Tuesday afternoon runs… again the GFS    has IRENE over to the right …taking here  across the Albemarle and Pamlico sounds of eastern North Carolina and coming out over the northern Outer Banks (Corolla)  and passing east of  Norfold by  50 miles and then heading up towards eastern New England.  If anything the 12z  GFS run was further to the east then the early morning   or 0z GFS  run.  Indeed many of the 12z hurricane models reflected that shift.

The afternoon European model was a little further to the east but not nearly to the same degree and continue to show an inland track with the European model taking it over eastern North Carolina then riding up  over  Norfolk   then just off  to the east of  Salisbury / Ocean City Maryland and then  over  or just offshore of cape May  New Jersey.  This is a track very similar to the historic hurricane of 1821 which bought hurricane conditions to Norfolk Virginia Salisbury Maryland and NYC .  In fact  that was the ONLY  hurricane in history to ever strike NYC directly.  Again the European model this afternoon was an extreme solution but it’s not one  that can be rueld  out.

Interestingly  the 18z  hurricane models actually came back to the west a little bit.     Later on Wednesday afternoon I probably will be issuing some forecast maps for the various areas over North Carolina Virginia Maryland and Delaware with respect to possible scenarios and the best and worst case conditions.


Throughout all this  keep in mind ….  the further east you are  then the worst the conditions will be.   In North Carolina if you’ are west of I95 conditions   then   things should not be that bad on Saturday   — some rain and some wind but it will not be a major event.  In Central Virginia  as one  moves  WEST  of I95 into the Piedmont conditions will rapidly and improve and not be nearly as severe as what you are going to see over eastern Virginia.  And close   the  closer you are  towards  Hampton roads and the lower Chesapeake Bay the worst conditions will be there as well.

In my  opinion …. I think the critical time in the forecast models will be Thursday.  By that time the various weather models should have a very good idea of what the cold front is actually going to look like.  Right now all these weather models are guessing that this cold front and trough in the jet stream that moves into the Midwest is going be a strong enough to bend hurricane Irene to the right.  In particular the GFS model and the hurricane models which are run off the GFS are showing that.  It’s possible that the cold front and the trough will not be that strong so that could be a shift back to the west and the hurricane models on Thursday.

Lastly if on Thursday we are not seeing a shift back to the west and the hurricane models continue to show Irene tracking to the east then I will make significant changes in the forecast.



2200  EDT  AUG 22

There have been some major developments with the global or large scale weather models regarding the development of hurricane Irene and they are important of elements for  ALL of   North Carolina and much of central and Eastern Virginia as  central Mayland   Delaware  as well l as the lower Maryland Eastern shore.

Irene is now   moving at  285   or  290  degrees … WNW .  This means that she is going to be pulling away from the north coast of the Dominican Republic on the big island of Hispaniola.   At Midday  he proximity of that large island   was   disrupting  the circulation around the system which is why  Irene  was not rapidly intensify.  Now this evening…     of coiurse she has  pulled away   from the  North coast of    Hispanola   and  she   has  reached   Category 2  status.
All the weather models at midday  and   this afternoon continue to show hurricane Irene becoming a major  ( CAT 3)   if not severe ( CAT 4) hurricane.  The   0Z  AUG 22    run of the European model for example strengthened  IRENE to a strong category 4   hurricane (929mb)    when she  makes  landfall late on August 27 near the Wilmington North Carolina coast.

The 0z  CANADIAN finally  got a   clue….


But NOT  the 0z  AUG 22   run of the GFS …   The  0z  GFS   Model   from early Monday Morning   showed  IRENE   hitting  Jacksonville  FL/ Savannah  GA area .. something  that has happened  1 time in 140 years.!!  Then   the GFS   has Irene  STALLING   over   GS  SC   for 48 hrs !!

Now   if this   solution wasn’t   goofy enough for ya…  12 hours later    the  12z  Monday  GFS  run      now had  a TOTALLY  different solution!  Instead of showing IRENE  stalled over   GA   and SC  on a  almost Imposisble   track….   the   12Z  GFS   now took  Irene  NE along the coast ONLY   hitting  Cape Hattera and   cape Cod mass!!        One  run  well  inland   next run almost out to sea!!    Like I  have said folks  many   many times…..   when it comes to Hurricane forecasting  past  72   or 84  hours    it is a piece of crap.   Its   sucks….BAD.

 Even worse   is  that  all of the  Hurricane  Models    are  run off the    Crappy   GFS   grid   which makes   them   even  worse.    Does anyone recall the last time the GFDL had  a    damn clue?   or the HWRF  did   not have a run  that  made you bust  out laughing ??
 After seeing the  12z  operational G FS and the  18z  hurricane models weather weenie after weather weenie as well as inept TV forecaster after inept TV forecast  preceded to declare that Irene was  likely to bend to the right and skim the coast and  it  may not be a significant threat after all.    While    this sort of thing  should be  expected  with  weather weenies…   with TV meteorologists should at least be able to do some basic synoptic meteorology which clearly many them  did not. .  The reason why the 12z   GFS has   a more pronounced bend to the northeast track with Irene ….is because the model is doing something which it should not be doing.

At day five or 120 hours there is another cold front and upper trough moving through the jet stream across the Great Lakes and Eastern Canada.  The 12z GFS model is over developing the trough.  This is a characteristic bias or flaw in the model  as it  loves to do this sort of thing in the medium range.  Because the trough is deeper and stronger ….  it  acts as a Bending force to push Irene to the northeast and out to sea.

The problem is that  NO  other model solution supports the trough that  deep moving  thru the Great Lakes with the same intensity  and  size that the G FS does.  If there was some other model support than I would accept the possible turn to the northeast as Irene approach to North Carolina coast  ….but since there is no other support for the GFS solution I simply disregard it.

Then we had the 12 Z European model come out which shows a frighteningly powerful scenario.  The European model keeps Irene as a category 4 hurricane making landfall at Wilmington  (938mb) .  This is the third run in a row  that this   model has Irene making landfall at Wilmington   — as oppsoed to the GFS   swinging  widely from one solution to another.


anyway… from Wilmington the European model takes Irene due north and then begins to bend it as a reaches Richmond Virginia slightly to the northeast taking it over Baltimore and up to Philadelphia by August 29.  This sort of inland track is a little unusual but the European model with its superior model resolution and physics is clearly seeing the western side of the Bermuda High much better than the GFS model.

Interesting  the Canadian model now looks very much like the European which is another sign that the European solution is probably going to be correct.
In addition  the 18z GFS   showed a trend back to the west and now takes Irene over Eastern North Carolina and right through southeastern Virginia and Hampton roads — which is  a  track  very similar to what the European model showing.  One of the rules that medium range weather forecasters use is that when the GFS and the European model do  NOT agre … and the very next run of the GFS  comes out and it looks like the European ….that isa  sign that the European model is usually going to be correct.

The new 0z suite of hurricane models has just come out and it is showing a band back to the west a little bit when you compare them to the 18 Z hurricane models


1800  EDT   21 AUG
During the day on Sunday all of the major global models except for the pathetically wretched the British or   UKMET model  showed a significant shift to the east both at the  0z  and 12z   model cycle  runs.  We knew this is going to occur when late last night the hurricane center readjusted the LLC  – low level center of circulation underneath a massive thunderstorms.  Often times when we see the tropical depression shift into tropical storm status  there is is jump in the low level center…  Usually to the north but not always.

However  this little shift to the north  of the LLC   may not appear to be very significant   to you   but it   does have   major implications for the overall storm track of tropical storm IRENE .  It now appears likely that IRENE  is going to pass very close to were exactly on top of the island of Puerto Rico.  But the North  shift in the  center increases the probability that IRENE will stay JUST north of the island of Hispaniola  and probably stay north of Eastern Cuba.


This increases the chances of the system staying out over water and becoming stronger  a  but it also  DECREASES  the chances of southern FL being hit.   As I stated yesterday the further north  IRENE  is  as  she  reaches   75   west Longitude  the   SOONER  she will turn  NW   then NNW  then N.

BRITISH MODEL  … note how it is again   by itself…

 All of the 12z  Sunday  Global Models –   except for the useless British model  — shifted further east AGAIN!  The Canadian model which early Saturday morning was showing a hit for New Orleans has shifted and 36 hours and now takes a system over Eastern North Carolina and Cape Hatteras.   As I discussed on Saturday this was likely to happen because  IRENE was that the far edge of the model grid.  The  GFS  and   European Model also shift east and now show a landfall AUG 27   close to Charleston SC  and then a track up through Central North Carolina passing over Charlotte and then into central  VA ….  over  Richmond  –  then over  DCA  BWI and PHL  on the 28th.

Rainfall amounts will be impressive and in many ways is quite possible that we may see rainfall amounts close to what we saw in  FLOYD in 1999.   The 0Z  and  12z GFS   show  huge area of rainfall amounts up to 6 inches and that  is based upon a minimal type of hurricane;  IF  IRENE  were to reach category   3   status the rainfall amounts could be even higher.

6z   GFS   sunday  aug 21   run  RAINFALL FORECAST              12z   AUG 21   RAINBFALL FORECAST 
 Ok  DT… cut to the   Chase…  what do    YOU think is  going to happen?
First ….let me make a   KEY point. One of the reasons I  fo  out of my  way to do this Model  analysis   with these various  weather models in this extended range  is  becuase I  think I have a  unusual   perspective  about  weather  Models  which most weather hobbyists and meteorologist don’t have  and I believe this difference in philosophy is what gives me the edge.
 Weather models are suppose to reflect the actual atmosphere– they do not drive weather systems.  The atmosphere drives the weather systems and the hurricane models or regular weather models are suppose to reflect the atmosphere.

This  point may not seem like a really big philosophical or significant deal to uou …. but it actually is.  This image represents the jet stream at  500 mb and it is from the  12z  Sunday, August 21 run of the GFS  I have highlighted the features so   that you can understand what  is  going to happen

Because I see the upper air features first I  have a differnt  grasp   understanding what  hurricane  or “regular”   global models are going to  show   with a  particular scenario.  As a result when I see a weather model show a goofy scenario   — for example the 0z Canadian model  on Saturday morning   that showed  IRENE   moving into New Orleans… I can reject it out of hand.

IRENE is going to turn to the NW…then NNW… then N  into a   “GAP”    which will exists  over the  Southeast  US.   This gap will occur   becuase of the  huge ridge and heat dome over the Rockies and  southwest only externds  to the   eastern  Plains…. and  the and the Bermuda High in the Western Atlantic Ocean.  This gap is a weakness in the atmosphere which will allow IRENE to  make that turn  and   make landfall  in the Carolinas probably in SC.

This sort of track is very typical of what we see with   Classic East coast hurricanes.  In  2003  we had a unusual storm by the name of hurricane Isabel and that this storm in the middle of September  but  Isabel  did NOT come up the coast.    Instead  Isabel came in from the western Atlantic Ocean in a SE  to NW trajectory slamming into eastern North Carolina and driving up towards  Richmond.    That was a very unusual track  and the last time we saw that was with the 1933 Chesapeake Bay hurricane .  Most East coast hurricanes do NOT  take that track.  Instead    they usually  have a track something like what we saw with hurricane Gloria in 1985    Bob in 1991 or FLOYD  1999.  In fact the Floyd analogy is a pretty good one  with Irene and the excess of rainfall amounts that the models are already producing only supports the Floyd 1999   East coast hurricane as a analog to what might happen with IRENE. 

The rainfal  over    SC    NC     all of  VA  and MD  and DE  as  well as   eastern  PA  and NJ  will be  heavy… and  in  many places   excessive. Amounts  of  6-10″ are likely  and Philly has  already  set their  record for their  wettest   AUG ever.

For folks in central and Eastern Virginia as long as IRENE does not build to category 3  or 4 status then does does not look like   this will be a major wind event so it is  SEEMS  that  Irene will be very different from what we saw with Isabel in 2003.    Again keep in mind that this is assuming …  and this is a big assumption… that IRENE does not reach category  3  or 4 status. 

Increasing threat of Hurricane Threat for FL SE US / eastern GULF AUG 28-29-30

Posted by wxrisk | GENERAL,HURRICANE SEASON 2012 | Saturday 20 August 2011 7:09 pm

1800  EDT    AUG  20

97L  was upgraded this afternoon 51700  EDT  to  tropical storm IRENE.   Looking at the  5PM  IR  satellite  it is easy to see why.  over the  past 24 HRS there  was this  hole or donut in the center of this large tropical wave with each semicircle having large area has  of  heavy thunderstorms.  But late this afternoon the center began to fill in and when the convection reached the low level circulation center the system of upgraded–  obviously finding the fly level wins a 53 knots  was a real kick in the head.

The afternoon models have shifted to the east with regard to the track of Irene.     

The 12z European model again remains firmly  committed to the idea that IRENE is going to track over hispanola then over Eastern Cuba and turn sharply to the north move into the Florida Straits and making landfall over southwest Florida and cutting across the peninsula AUG 27…     with a 2nd  US   landfall over southwest   SC near the Georgia border.  However by that time the trough over the Midwest will have moved off the northeast coast which means that the gap in the  pattern over the southeastern CONUS    gets   “filled”.   So the European model now takes this system and stalls over the southeast CONUS   providing that area with several days of extremely heavy rain.

This is sort of scenarios also followed by the  12Z GFS which is in very close agreement with the overall European trend. 

 If you recall from this morning the   0Z Canadian and British models with the furthest west taking this system into the central gulf coast and threatening New Orleans but the  12z  saturday no longer do that and show a system which makes a sharper turn.  This results in the tropical cyclone move into the Eastern Gulf of Mexico and not threatening New Orleans.
Of course both of these models still have   IRENE passing south of Jamaica which is absurd given what we are seeing on the other models and the developing atmosphere pattern.


1100 AM   AUG  20

I am not going to discuss the  development of  93L into the Tropical Depression which has already occurred  as of early this morning.  The system is clearly going to crash into Belize in Central America and is not going to be a threat to any portion of the CONUS.  In addition except for some exceptionally heavy rains over the mountains of Central America this system is not even going to be a big deal for Central America.     And no for the record I don’t think is going to reach hurricane status before it arrives on the coast this Saturday afternoon.

Meanwhile what WAS  a very weak looking   tropical wave 97L   is looking much better this morning.  This first image    — the   12z  IR  satellite picture    — shows  what the system looked like on Friday morning  8AM  EDT.  It had some developing showers and thunderstorms with it but it certainly did not look all that impressive.   


 (note that you can also  see  the New  TD   that may become   Harvey forming in the far western portions of the Caribbean headed for Belize).    I am pointing out  what was the weak  status of  tropical wave  97L on Friday morning for a particular reason  .  As I discussed yesterday    there is another strong tropical wave in the far Eastern Atlantic Ocean… known  as 98L.  There has been a lot of speculation that this fairly strong looking tropical wave is either going to fall apart or track   to the   NW out into the open waters of the Atlantic.

98L looks far stronger   now than  97L did on  Thursday  when it was in the same  lat / Long position .   However because most of the global models have been developing   97L into a major event for several days…  it has became a lot easier to believe that 97L was going to hold together then intensify and and become a significant tropical cyclone.

Complicating this  is   the hurricane center describing a second tropical wave in close proximity to  98L… a   wave  they have designated as 99L . In  my  opinion this is  a mistake  …98L  and 99L   are the same    Tropical  wave  and  I cannot figure out  for the life of me why  TPC has split this tropical wave up the two portions.    It  is just a large organized tropical wave with two centers –  not  2 different waves.    What  they call 99L has a center which is at 9 or  10° N latitude which is easily  far enough south to ensure that it does not get turned out to sea and will become a more significant threat as it  tracks westward across the tropical Atlantic….  in manner  close to 97L.

Back to 97L….  The   early Saturday  am  weather models — the 0z runs -  continue to show them overall trend that we have seen for the last several days.   It appears likely now from most of the hurricane models that this system will become a tropical depression and then a tropical storm called IRENE sometime over the next 36 hours.   It may not happen until a system reaches the Leewards islands.   However the problem is that no matter which particular long-range global model  you are considering… they all take IRENE very close or over the big island’s of    Hispanola and a good portion of Cuba.   Even the models which don’t have it going over  Hispanola and Cuba have IRENE tracking   along the immediate south coast of those big island’s and their mountains.   Either way it’s clear that IRENE is not likely to intensify when she is   either  next to or  Hispanola and eastern Cuba or tracking over them.
So while it is possible that IRENE could I suppose reach hurricane status before reaching the big island of Hispaniola ….  it is not likely   that IRENE  will not maintain hurricane status while its close to or crossing those two big islands.

The second factor that we have to deal with is the overall synoptic pattern.    The overall pattern shows a very strong “Bermuda High”   — which is also known as the Western Atlantic Ridge  ( or W.A.R.)  dominating the entire western half of the Atlantic Ocean.  The periphery or edge of the Bermuda High /WAR will be actually on the eastern and southeastern CONUS  next week.  Over the western CONSU e have a large massive heat dome….  and it’s  EASTERN   edge  or  periphery will be located over  eastern Texas  into  Missouri   and the central Plains. 

In between there will be a gap or weakness in the overall atmosphere pattern that will be over the eastern Gulf of Mexico Florida and the southeastern CONUS.      To the north a fairly  strong trough is going to move through the Great Lakes and the Northeast AUG  25-26-27.  The passage of this trough and the gap or weakness in the atmosphere over the southeastern CONUS  will allow for IRENE to turn at SOME point to the northwest and then north   around AUG 28 – 29.

On this point all the models agree.   But the disagreement hass to do with where IRENE will be on the map when it makes that turn to the NW….   and the strength of the trough moving through the Midwest and the northeast.

1)   the further North  IRENE  tracks  ( say over   Cuba)  the   more likely  we are to see a turn to the NW  then N   sooner.   Conversely  the further south  she is the   later the turn  to the NW and the bigger the  threat  for  strong  central  Gulf  Hurricane.

2)  the  deeper the  Midwest  trough  the   more likely  we are to see a turn to the NW  then N   occur sooner.   Conversely  the  weaker  the Midwest trough  the   later the turn  to the NW and the bigger the  threat  for  strong  central  Gulf  Hurricane.

 The  0Z   GFS  European model  show a fairly strong trough and they have IRENE tracking over the big island of hispaniola and Cuba .  Because  they have IRENE  this far  north   the  Euro model turns it to the northwest sooner and as result of   this  model take this system into Florida then into the Southeast CONUS    then up into  Virginia and North Carolina AUG 30 .


These models have IRENE strengthening only into  a category 1  or perhaps a category 2 hurricane because the system spend only a short period of time over the warm waters of the Florida Straits…   and thew  western or eastern side of FL.       However the British and the Canadian models which are arguably the two worst models to use in forecasting tropical cyclones…  have IRENE tracking over Jamaica and passing through the Yucatan channel.  Because these models have IRENE this far to the south and west ….the interaction between the tropical cyclone and a trough over the Midwest is pretty weak so we end up with a wider turn which takes it into the Central Gulf of Mexico.

Thus the 0z  Canadian and British models show a direct hit very close to New Orleans Louisiana .  In my opinion this solution  is crap but I am sure there are those out there who are going to try and height this scenario as a viable one.  The problem with the Canadian model solution is that its resolution is not nearly as good as the European or the GFS and the tropical cyclone is at the age of the models grid so it probably does not see it very well.  The British or UKMET  is just a piece of crack and it needs a major upgrade.  And it needed about five years ago.


1800 EDT    AUG 18

If you have been following any of my posts over the  past few days over at the   Facebook page you know that I have been talking about  the increasing threat of some sort of significant hurricane affecting some portion of the southeastern United States and or Florida sometime around August 28.

Up to this point in the hurricane season we have had seven named systems and not one of them have reached hurricane intensity. And fact none of them have even gotten close! This as you may have already heard or read has never happened before.       So what does   THAT  mean and why?

It means that there are a lot of systems coming off Africa which are fairly vigorous but they are struggling to develop.   And when they finally do begin to develop many of them have already moved out of the MDR — the main development region– of the Atlantic Basin.    Some of this probably is because of the dust into portions of the eastern and central tropical Atlantic.   But there   is probably another reason and that is has been the lack of favorable 200 MB rising motion.

For many years we have known that the wave train of tropical ways coming off the African Coast … which of course is an intregal aprt of the Cape Verde Hurricane season … always increases during the second half of August and throughout the month of September.     Then it begins to wind down OCT 1-15.    But that knowledge is not enough in helping us determine which tropical waves  are developing which ones are going to fall apart and why.

Many of you may know of the SAL phenomenon which is really just a fancy term we use to describe these large surges of dust which come off the African continent and move into various portions of the tropical Atlantic Ocean.    This dust  when it  is particularly heavy or strong ….dramatically interferes with tropical wave development especially around the Cape Verde Islands. 

However another feature which is often overlooked and not known by many has to do with   200 MB vertical Velocties.    This again is just a fancy weather term which refers to the upper motion in the atmosphere.   When there is a lot of strong vertical motion in the atmosphere… thunderstorms in tropical waves crossing the tropical Atlantic Ocean are able to develop much more rapidly.     And it would follow that when you have sinking air or downward motion in the atmosphere ….thunderstorms have a great deal of difficulty developing and you end up with weakening tropical weights.

To show you what this looks like   I can present you with the latest 200 MB Vertical Velocities Plots from CPC.    This image as of August 17 shows a large area of  GREEN    (rising or positive motion)    has moved into much of the tropical Atlantic and mores coming in from Africa into the entire Atlantic Basin.    As you can see from the image it is not surprising their four that the entire tropical Atlantic has shown a significant increase in activity over the past several days.

Back in early August we had EMILY.     Of course Emily did not actually    doing anything but if you recall SOME weather models — the GFDL the GFS and the Hurircane Models — showed EMILY becoming a significant hurricane near the Florida coast.    As you take a look of this image you can see that there was a another surge of GREEN or rising motion energy moving through the Caribbean Basin when Emily began to develop.    Of course what Killed off EMILY  was   her crossing   into Hispanola.

93L is finally beginning to develop in the Western Caribbean which is always a fable place for tropical systems to develop.    The ocean water temperatures there are extremely warm and often there is large   Ridge in the Jet stream over the southwest Atlantic Ocean which provides a favorable synoptic development area in the Western Caribbean.


However one thing I need to point out is that the satellite pictures back from August 11 showed tropical wave 93 L to be impressive looking when he came off the southwest African Coast.

However    93L was impacted by another strong tropical wave to the northwest which eventually became GERT.     The close proximity of tropical storm Gert probably interfered with the development of 93L    for  a few days.  Now that  93L  is   developing this afternoon it’s pretty clear that the system is going to crash into the Yucatan coast and die.

Next on the pipeline is tropical wave 97L  . Again this system  WAS  looking fairly strong several days ago  as it  came off the African Coast.    However over the past 36 HRS   97L has waekend SOME… probably because of the large surge of Dust to its NE in thre far eastern Atlantic which has interfere with the low level circulation.

As you can see from the satellite picture the core around the low level center of this tropical wave is now devoid of any thunderstorms. The satellite picture show there is this
“hole”     in the center of the tropical wave where the surface Low should be.     That being said ….  It is QUITE possible that 97 L   as it moves closer towards the lesser Antilles island chain … may develop into a significant.

Over the past 4 days ALL of the weather Models   have been going to town with 97L and develop into a TS by the time it reaches the NE carribean … then it develops into a major hurricane that threaten some portion of the Bahamas FL and or the southeast US around August 28.

But 97L     is moving away from the dust and is now entering  much warmer SSTs and is now in an area of maximum vertical upward motion at 200 Mb. Not surprisingly given how strong is wave has been and is much more favorable atmosphere environment

Still given the recent model performance of over developing systems coming off Africa this is not yet a sure thing.

However there are other considerations to take into account. Recent studies have shown that there is a distinct correlation between MJO phases and tropical cyclone development in the north Atlantic.

As you can see from this table the data clearly shows that when the MJO impulse in phase 1 or 2… You are far more likely to see a significant hurricane develop in the tropical Atlantic . Likewise when the MJO is in phases 6 and 7… You are much less likely to see any tropical cyclone development and especially any hurricane evelopment .

In this next image we can clearly see the difference between the two phases of the MJO. 

  If this data and research is correct– and I strongly believe that it is– next question is… Given the strong tropical wave which is moved off the southwest African Coaston AUG 18 …what is the current phase of the MJO?      As you can clearly see the MJO currently is in phase 2 which the research shows is extremely favorable for the development of a significant tropical cyclone.     The GFS Model moves the MJO back into Phase 1 by the end of the month wehrre as the European and British MJO models show the MJO area .


When you put all this together you clearly see strong indications that 97L has a good chance developing into a major hurricane. Given the overall pattern that is expected to form over the western Atlantic and the central and eastern CONUS AUG 25-29 … The potential does exist for a significant hurricane threat.

1.   97L   is moving into a much more favorable  area.
2.   The 200 MB vertical velocities are now extremely favorable as they show very strong pper motion over the entire tropical Atlantic Basin.
3.   The MJO is quite favorable. And the Atlantic Basin is quite warm.


Since  97L  is weaker    it is more likely to stay  on  a  West   track Longer and  passes   SOUTH of Puerto Rico.       This means   that  97L is  far more to    pass  SOUTH  of  Puerto Rico   and that in turn means  and  Bigger  caribbean and  Gulf of Mexico threat.     What we do know is that the western Atlantic ridge  ( W.A.R.) –also known as the Bermuda High –is going to build into the East coast during a period of AUG 24-28.  We also know that there is going to be very strong ridge or heat dome over the western third of the nation as well extending from the west coast into the central Plains and Central Texas.

In between those two features a trough in the Jet stream will develop over the Midwest AUG 26-30. Any hurricane which is coming through the Bahamas or Florida will of course detect this Midwest trough and this will allow the potential hurricane… Potential… To begin to shift its track to the northwest and then eventually north.

In other words as the hurricane approaches the southeastern US it will depend on   1) where the western periphery or edge of the Bermuda High is located and      2) how deep or large is the Midwest and trough.

For the past several runs the European model has been taken a system close to Florida then into the South Carolina Coast and the GFS and the Canadian models have for the most part showed a similar track.


 However this afternoon the 12 ZGFS European and Canadian models all shifted the track of this system to the west. They did so because they showed the system tracking over hispanola and Cuba. This means a weaker system and a weaker system means a more west track.

However that also means that once the system clears Cuba and moves into the Gulf of Mexico it will again detect the trough in the jet stream over the Midwest and turn to the northwest and then north.

One of the key benchmarks were things to look four will be where this tropical cyclone will track with relationship to Puerto Rico. Most of the time— not always that most of the time– a tropical cyclone which tracks to the north of Puerto Rico will end up affecting the southeastern US (assuming f it does not turn out to sea). On the other hand if it tracks over Puerto Rico or to the south is far more likely to move into the Gulf of Mexico or Florida. Of course there are exceptions to this general rule book and the biggest one that comes to mind is hurricane IKE back in 2008. That hurricane passed well to the north of Puerto Rico then actually turned WSW so it was forced to track over Cuba and then moved into the Gulf of Mexico .


Today a much stronger more impressive tropical wave moved off the southwest African Coast. (98L   ) It is far away the most impressive tropical wave of the season and it is come off the coast at the time of maximum vertical upward motion at 200 Mb.


As you can see from the satellite picture that I use and have posted this strong tropical wave already has a very distinct curved band of clouds and probably already has a strong area of low pressure in its center. One could make a case that this feature is already close to tropical depression status right now.

Some may argue that 98L will curve out to sea… and it may. But if so it will not for several days. Models show that the HIGH over the eastern Atlantic — the AZORES HIGH as it is referred to — will slide West with 98L. This means no such early turn out to sea    

By the time 98L reach 60 west Long if it has Not  turned out to sea by then it wont because by then a new large Ridge– the eastern side of the Bemruda High will be in place .

  But right now    the Models do NOT  develop 98L into  a major     TC.       Since the tropical wave is just not coming off the coast of Africa is very difficult for any global model to figure out  to  ‘see”    where  98 L is going to go. In other words the models are operating on an ASSUMPTION on that this feature is actually going to form even thougt until this morning of AUG 18 … it had not actually moved off the coast of Africa.   ince the tropical wave is just not coming off the coast of Africa is very difficult for any global model to figure out where this feature is going to go. In other words the models are operating on an ASSUMPTION on that this feature is actually going to form even thought until this morning of AUG 18 … it had not actually moved off the coast of Africa.

The Last point has to do with WARM sea surface temperature anomalies in the Atlantic Basin.    They continue to run quite warm.    Once 98L reaches 40 degrees West things can really develop rapidly. When the Atlantic Basin is warm like this there is a strong correlation for significant land falling US hurricanes.


Posted by wxrisk | GENERAL | Monday 1 August 2011 2:40 am

2255  EDT  JULY  31

It  is no mistake that the founder of modern CHAOS theory Dr Lorenzo   from MIT was a meteorologist.  All good meteorologists are familiar with chaos theory though I would venture to say that most climatologists don’t have a clue what the hell CHAOS theory  is about.   

Several years ago the great mathematical  trader and deep   philosopher   and  analyst  and all around exceptionally  brilliant human being  by the name of Nassim Taleb  wrote two very important books.  The first one is called being  FOOLED  BY  RANDONESS    and  the  second book has been called by MANY   as one  of the TOP 100  most important books ever written:  THE   BLACK SAWN

I read the book twice– well actually I am into the second reading right now–and is a profoundly deep and intellectually moving book  that strikes a almost spiritual cord  within  me  as a operational grain and energy meteorologist. The    Black Swan Theory  (BSE)  is a term used   to   show  a  concept that a   event is a surprise (to all or almost all  observers) and has a major impact.   BSE     have a high chance   of   being  major impact  events  that  asre hard to predict.   BSE  are  therefore rare events that are beyond the realm of normal expectations in history, science, finance and technology

Although by definition a BSE  is difficult to predict   they are NOT  impossible to   see.    I do not have any greater insight than anybody else who is knowledgeable in  BSE  and CHAOS  theory except for the experiences that I have   in forecasting weather.    I see a possible BSE  coming  for east central  snd/ or northeastern China somewhere between Shanghai and the far northern coast of the Yellow Sea on August 7 – 8.      The event is a developing hurricane   — in the western Pacific of course which is called the typhoon –which is already reaching impressive category  4 status.    Over the last several days the European model has been extremely bullish on this   Typhoon.     The European model  has been keeping the intensity of this system a category four or category five status as it approaches the East Central China Coast.    Some of the earlier model  runs  were taking this typhoon into the major east central coastal city of Shanghai.        But over the weekend the models have been taking the powerful Typhoon into the Yellow sea across the  Shantung peninsula and into the northern portions of the Yellow sea coastal areas.

Certainly a category 4  or  5 hurricane hitting Shanghai ….would be an outright disaster.   A   categotry  3  Typhoon  hitting  in the Yellow   sea then moving into   eastern North China Plains  and or  Manchuria…where it would rains itself out  for days and days  would  be very bad as well.     Of course there are other weather models to consider besides the European but the European handles major hurricanes like this extremely well and the fact that the model has locked onto this track before any other model I think is quite significant. 

No models –except for the useless Canadian –is taking this  Typhoon into any portion of Japan or even Southern Korea.    All the rest of the major global models are taking this extreme Typhoone somewhere into the E central and northeastern coast of China.

This has the potential to cause major damage to large portions of the agricultural areas in   the North China  Plain  and central & southern Machuria .   Significant damage here would of course have a major impact upon China’s corn and soybean crop in some areas and therefore would impact China’s demand slash import for US  grains to replace  the lost Crop.