moonlightcowboy's WunderBlog

Arthur still morphing.....

By: moonlightcowboy, 10:51 PM GMT on May 30, 2008



North Atlantic Discussion

"Land Storm" Arthur finally dissipates but may be morphing itself again as 91E in the ePacific with remnants, and too, as a strengthening low level center headed towards the BOC. (See post #136 below to see the coc). The low pressure area continues to produce heavy rains and light winds across much of the Yucatan peninsula for about the third day now. Although several of the latest models including NOGAPS, CMC, GFDL and CLIPPER have Arthur(leftovers) moving north into the BOC. The BAMM group of models take Arthur(remnants) weakening and tracking sw, still over land, back towards the Pacific. The high and dry air to the north are keeping much of the precipitation down in the GOM north of the tip of the Yucatan. While there is a weakness starting with the high and could be what the models are seeing for the BOC, Arthur still is moving slowly at 5 mph to the west, northwest. Whether or not Arthur can hold it together to take advantage of some "open water" in the Bay of Campeche with warm water conditions is becoming possible maybe. The NHC doesn't seem to think so at this point and continues to weaken the depression and dissipate the storm over land. But this has been a strange and unique system from the very beginning and its remnants could emerge into the Pacific and if it forms again would be called Boris.

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The real story here continues to be rainfall. The eastern side is dumping 5-10 inches fairly generously over the region. Some areas like Belize and the Gulf of Honduras areas are getting as much as 15 inches of rain. These areas may experience devastating mudslides and flooding considering the fact that Arthur(etc) has been fairly stationary over the area since Friday a deluge of rain has fallen with more on the way as it traverses back across sMexico.



The TPC still shows the "Land Storm" Arthur moving southwesterly at five mph back towards the Pacific over sMexico.



LATEST VISIBLE SAT shot.



TROPIC-wide 850mb VORTICITY

Here's a look at the next 12-48 hour forecasts!

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OTHER areas of INTEREST: (1) is the latest CV twave to roll off the African coast. The protracted wave shows some good mid-level rotation but not much on convection and I think that is possibly due to some dry air and low level high pressure contouring downward from the larger Azores high further north. Some of the models have been showing possible development there for a couple of days. (2) Another twave near sAmerica nearing Trinidad seems to be gaining altitude and convection with some rotation as well. The twaves have been coming off the coast with some frequency and good organization. In the sat pic below its easy to see the rotation. (2) and some of the models are hinting at some possible development ahead in the Caribbean south of Cuba. More later on these later.

850mb Vorticity
TWO
WIND SHEAR
Shear Tendency
Current Steering

¡INFORME del HURACÁN EN ESPAÑOL de señor Bob! Chasque encendido el acoplamiento en la izquierda y enróllelo abajo para la información.

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Other BLOGS and updates:

Visit Patrap's blog on "Hurricane Preparedness!" - excellent blog...and May is the time to get ready, before season gets here!

Other good tropical blogs on WU here at "TROPICAL LAGNIAPPE". These are from some of WU's most respected, adept weather bloggers. Please check them out! Good info from them, and I always learn something when I visit their blogs and sites.

My other 2008 pre-season blogs:

The LOOP CURRENT and EDDYS


What will the 2008 season be like?

Is the MJO working?

Got an ITCZ? Scratch it!

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Click on the RED CROSS link here.


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Alma named. Early CV wave???

By: moonlightcowboy, 3:08 PM GMT on May 27, 2008



The east Pacific storm (90E)TD1 has been named TS Alma and could strengthen to hurricane status before making landfall. Alma is moving slow, but intensifying. Latest images show a possible eye forming. With warm waters and no shear, it's entirely possible to power up more before reaching shore. In any case, it's going to be a major rain event and likely to cause dangerous mudslides to some of the countries of cAmerica - Nicaragua, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras. All this rain dumped into the hillsides there could be quite dangerous. Where does it go after that? Not much further - too much mountainous terrain in front of it and it will quickly dissipate over land. However, all of the moisture will linger and likely make it into the Caribbean, but no development is further expected.

CLICK on RAMSDIS IR3 WV LOOP

There is little dry air left in the Caribbean and it's diminishing in the GOM, too. With the new Caribbean conditions cyclcogenesis becomes more favorable and is where climatology favors development. However, if there is any development in the sCarib, it's likely to be quite slow. Certainly, still, something tropical would be nice in the way of rainfall to the seCONUS and especially FL.

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Also, an interesting wave has entered the Atlantic off of Africa, and I'm still of the mindset that we'll see an invest from a twave out of the cATL before what is considered normal, especially with the early frequency and fair organization of these waves. Too, I'm thinking also that this is hinting at what might be a very active CV season, particularly with the B/A high setup.



LATEST 72hr TCP SFC MAP - shows possible cyclone development.



TROPIC-wide 850mb VORTICITY

Here's a look at the next 12-48 hour forecasts!

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850mb Vorticity
TWO
North Atlantic Discussion
WIND SHEAR
Shear Tendency
Current Steering

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Other BLOGS and updates:

Visit Patrap's blog on "Hurricane Preparedness!" - excellent blog...and May is the time to get ready, before season gets here!

MAY is SEVERE WEATHER MONTH; For the best WU coverage on SEVERE WEATHER, visit Vortfix's "TORNADO SCIENCE, FACTS AND HISTORY" blog This blog explains tornadoes and severe weather and be sure to read through the comments for good info, too. During severe weather, just click on it from the main blog directory - it's usually near the top. It operates almost 24/7 when there's a severe weather outbreak any where along the coastal/southeastern CONUS. Get nearly real-time warnings and radar links. Vort's an avid follower of severe weather with great insight to potentially serious systems.
And, he usually has a great bunch of folks that help, pitching in with posting warnings, radars and insight. Good blog. Be sure to check it out!

Other good tropical blogs on WU here at "TROPICAL LAGNIAPPE". These are from some of WU's most respected, adept weather bloggers. Please check them out! Good info from them, and I always learn something when I visit their blogs and sites.

My other 2008 pre-season blogs:

The LOOP CURRENT and EDDYS


What will the 2008 season be like?

Is the MJO working?

Got an ITCZ? Scratch it!


visitor stats

New Pearl Harbor pics found

By: moonlightcowboy, 5:13 AM GMT on May 24, 2008

(Just got this in an email and it is supposedly newly found photos of) PEARL HARBOR: Photos Stored in an old Brownie Camera since 1941

The following photos were recently found stored in a foot locker in an old brownie camera. You will definitely show your age if you even know what a brownie camera is or looks like. The quality of these photos is unreal, even after sitting in an old camera for over 66 years.

THESE PHOTOS ARE FROM A SAILOR WHO WAS ON THE USS QUAPAW ATF-11O.

PEARL HARBOR
December 7th,1941


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On Sunday, December 7th, 1941 the Japanese launched a surprise attack against the U.S. Forces stationed at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. By planning his attack on a Sunday, the Japanese commander, Admiral Nagumo, hoped to catch the entire fleet in port. As luck would have it, the aircraft carriers and one of the battleships were not in port. The USS Enterprise was returning from Wake Island where it had just delivered aircraft. The USS Lexington was ferrying aircraft to Midway, and the USS Saratoga and USS Colorado were undergoing repairs in the United States.

In spite of the latest intelligence reports about the missing aircraft carriers (his most important targets), Admiral Nagumo decided to continue the attack with his force of six carriers and 423 aircraft. At a range of 230 miles north of Oahu, he launched the first wave of a two-wave attack. Beginning at 0600 hours his first wave consisted of 183 fighters and torpedo bombers which struck at the fleet in Pearl Harbor and the airfields in Hickam, Kaneohe and Ewa. The second strike launched at 0715 hours and consisted of 167 aircraft which again struck at the same targets.

At 0753 hours the first wave consisting of 40 Nakajima B5N2 'Kate' torpedo bombers, 51 Aichi D3A1 'Val' dive bombers, 50 high altitude bombers and 43 Zeros struck airfields and Pearl Harbor. Within the next hour the second wave arrived and continued the attack.

When it was over, the U.S. losses were:

Casualties

USA: 218 KIA, 364 WIA.
USN: 2,008 KIA, 710 WIA.
USMC: 109 KIA, 69 WIA.
Civilians: 68 KIA, 35 WIA.

TOTAL: 2,403 KIA, 1,178 WIA.

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Battleships

USS Arizona (BB-39) - total loss when a bomb hit her magazine.
USS Oklahoma (BB-37) - Total loss when she capsized and s unk in the harbor.
USS California (BB-44) - Sunk at her berth. Later raised and repaired.
USS West Virginia (BB-48) - Sunk at he r berth. Later raised and repaired.
USS Nevada - (BB-36) Beached to prevent sinking . Later repaired.
USS Pennsylvania (BB-38) - Light damage.
USS Maryland (BB-46) - Light damage.
USS Tennessee (BB-43) Light damage.
(former battleship used as a target) - Sunk.
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Cruisers

USS New Orleans (CA- 32) - Light Damage..
USS San Francisco (CA38) - Light Damage.
USS Detroit (CL-8) - Light Damage.
USS Raleigh (CL-7) - Heavily damaged but repaired.
USS Helena (CL-50) - Light Damage.
USS Honolulu (CL-48) - Light Damage..
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Destroyers

USS Downes (DD-375) - Destroyed. Parts salvaged.
USS Cassin - (DD-37 2) Destroyed. Parts salvaged.
USS Shaw (DD-373) - Very heavy damage.
USS Helm (DD-388) - Light Damage.
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Minelayer

USS Ogala (CM-4) - Sunk but later raised and repaired.
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Seaplane Tender

USS Curtiss (AV-4) - Severely damaged but later repaired.&nbs p;
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Repair Ship

USS Vestal (AR-4) - Sever ely damaged but later repaired.
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Harbor Tug

USS Sotoyomo (YT-9) - Sunk but later raised and re paired .
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Aircraft

188 Aircraft destroyed (92 USN and 92 U.S. Army Air Corps.)

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This is a picture I took last year when I was in DC of my uncle's name on the Vietnam Memorial Wall. Although I was young at the time of his death, it made an impact on my young life, as it does today, still.



Our country asks great things from our service men and women, and sometimes we ask for the ultimate sacrifice. On this Memorial Day, please honor all who answered that call. I think we all too often, too, forget the families who have lost a son or daughter, a husband or wife, a brother or sister, a father or mother - they're left with the pain of that loss. God help us to remember them, too. God bless all of those that have gone before and their families. And, for those, now, on duty in harm's way around the world, I say "thank you" and ask God to keep you close. From a grateful heart and a great nation from which has always rested on the shoulders of your patriotism and courage.

God speed!

HAVE A HAPPY AND SAFE MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND, ALL!


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FROM THE FRYING PAN and ......

By: moonlightcowboy, 6:58 PM GMT on May 17, 2008

There's been much ado this pre-season about SST's running a little late this season, and maybe they have; but, as you can see in this graphic water is 27 degrees and higher most everywhere one looks. It's especially hot off the African coast and in the eastern Pacific. So, without great debate, we can resign ourselves to the fact that most waters will support tropical development already.

But, what happens when tropical systems go from the fryin' pan...

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The "fire" is these "ring of fires" called loop eddys found commonly and most notably in the GOM. Loop eddys or gulf eddys are formed by the loop current. This a warm current that enters the GOM from the Caribbean between the Yucatan Peninsula and Cuba. The current forms a "loop" as it bends to exit the GOM through the Florida Straights between Cuba and Florida and into the Gulf Stream that goes up the Atlantic coast.



The above graphic (left) shows the velocity of surface or "loop" current as it moves through the GOM at a one foot per second through the GOM off the Campeche Bank. These waters flow as much as five feet higher (right) than the surrounding waters adding fast, deep water into the GOM. The current moves generally in a northwest motion and, on average, penetrates the GOM as far north as 27.5N - the variance can be as much as a 100 miles or so further north or south.

The "bend" or loop in the current eventually pinches off and becomes what is called a loop eddy which spins anti-cyclonic. Studies have found that loop eddys (the rings) can range in size from 200-400 miles wide. Eddys, on average, separate from the loop current about every 9.5 months, occasionally separating as short as six and as much as 11 months.



The two Quikscat passes (above) show Katrina as it enters the GOM in August 2005 over sFlorida (left before) and then after it passes over the loop current and eddy in the central and ncGOM (right after) exploding into CAT 5 cane over these hot, deep waters before making landfall.



And, the two Quikscat passes (above) show IVAN in the Caribbean in 2004 (left before) and then after it passes over the loop current and eddy in the central and ncGOM (right after) exploding into CAT 5 cane over these hot, deep waters before making landfall as a slightly weaker CAT 4.



The graphic (left) shows the flow of the warm Caribbean current into the GOM, the Loop Current, and hot it exits throught the FL Straits into the Gulf Stream which is also very warm waters just off the Atlantic seaboard. The altimetry graphic (right) shows the current "loop current" and it looks as if there are four eddys in the GOM that have spun off previously. Eddys spun to the north are called "frontal eddys", to the west "Campeche Bank" eddys and to the right "Tortuga" eddys. If you can zoom in, you can see the countour lines and the heights above the regular Gulf surface - each of these spin anticyclonic so that warmer water goes deeper and make for hot-fuel depots for tropical storms.

LINKS for checking out the LOOP EDDYS! These are the ones I like to use: Navy Research Laboratory and the Colorado Center for Astrodynamics Research. Check 'em out - these are fireballs for tropical storms!

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AVHRR (Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometry; seven-day composite sea-surface temperature (SST) for day ending on Feb/05/1998, showing the Loop Current in an extended position into the Gulf, and an old ring further west. Note the appearance of a series of frontal eddies along the outer edges of the Loop Current and the old ring, a cyclone over the east Campeche Bank slope just north of the Yucatan Channel, and a Tortugas eddy (cyclone). Approximately two months later the Campeche Bank and Tortugas cyclones appeared to cleave the Loop and a ring was shed. Note also cooler shelf waters and even smaller-scale eddies along the shelf-edge.

Here's a nice, scientific report from Princeton University on the Loop Current, Rings and Related Circulation in the Gulf of Mexico: A Review of Numerical Models and Future Challenges

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Visit Patrap's blog on "Hurricane Preparedness!" - excellent blog...and May is the time to get ready, before season gets here!


NOTE: Constructive criticism, suggestions and comments appreciated.


---------------------------------------------------------

Other BLOGS and updates:

MAY is SEVERE WEATHER MONTH; For the best WU coverage on SEVERE WEATHER, visit Vortfix's "TORNADO SCIENCE, FACTS AND HISTORY" blog This blog explains tornadoes and severe weather and be sure to read through the comments for good info, too. During severe weather, just click on it from the main blog directory - it's usually near the top. It operates almost 24/7 when there's a severe weather outbreak any where along the coastal/southeastern CONUS. Get nearly real-time warnings and radar links. Vort's an avid follower of severe weather with great insight to potentially serious systems.
And, he usually has a great bunch of folks that help, pitching in with posting warnings, radars and insight. Good blog. Be sure to check it out!

Other good tropical blogs on WU here at "TROPICAL LAGNIAPPE". These are from some of WU's most respected, adept weather bloggers. Please check them out! Good info from them, and I always learn something when I visit their blogs and sites.

My other 2008 pre-season blogs:

What will the 2008 season be like?


Is the MJO working?


Got an ITCZ? Scratch it!

visitor stats

What will the 2008 season look like?

By: moonlightcowboy, 10:30 AM GMT on May 01, 2008

If one were to go strictly by ENSO historical values alone, from cooling to neutral to late warming conditions, the seemingly more fitting years with those similarities are 1951, 1968, or possibly 1986, 1994 and 2004.

- 1951 saw 10 named storms, 8 hurricanes, 1 CAT 2 CONUS landfall on wFL coast, 4 majors

- 1968 saw 7 named storms, 3 hurricanes, 3 CONUS landfalls on seTX and wFL coast, no major.

- 1986 saw 6 named storms, 2 hurricanes, 2 landfalls – one on the neTX coast and one in the “big bend” area of FL, no major.

- 1994 saw 7 named storms, 3 hurricanes, but only 3 TS landfalls on the FL panhandle and swFL, no major.

- 2004 saw 15 named storms, 9 hurricanes, 6 land falling CONUS hurricanes (5 majors) as well as 3 TS all with landfalls on TX, LA, FL(panhandle to sFL) and SC, 6 majors.

Of course, I'm near-sighted, and may have not looked closely enough at the historical data; but, that's the closest that I can tell where years had nina or neutral conditions that eventually gave way later to warm conditions.

Apparently, even the NHC has even recently missed the tendencies or speed of transitioning ENSOs. So, I won’t begin to really genuinely speculate; but, my instinct tells me that it'll be nearly impossible for the CONUS to go another year without a major landfall. If you judge by the above examples (except for 2004), one could discern that this season might not be as active, and that FL is the likely target. But, that's not really news to anyone - FL has and always will be a target stuck out there like a sore thumb in harm's way! The latest reports/models have said we've shifted from nina to neutral conditions already. And, if the trend continues, we could possibly move towards nino conditions later in the season as tPac waters have warmed quite quickly in recent weeks. Neutral seasons are supposedly more active; but, one couldn’t prove it by a few of those years above. Of course, 2004 was quite active!



So, I'm going to make a slight departure here and say, that this year could indeed be active, but compared to a different year - 1969. Crazy? Most likely certifiable!

But, here's why: The two years prior, '67 and '68, (like ’06 and ’07) produced a fewer number of storms(especially for the CONUS), 5-6 hurricanes total, with only three making landfall in both years. The exception, Beulah, was a CAT 5 that bashed the Corpus Christi area and the only major to make landfall those two years. Comparatively, those two seasons were relatively (CONUS) quiet and is somewhat reflective of ’06 and ’07. But, the year following was another story. 1969 was a record year, quite active with 13 named storms, 10 hurricanes and five were majors with two making landfall. It also saw three un-named TS’s and two un-named hurricanes. (So, the count was really 18. Not sure why that is, but likely because they were fish storms because they formed far out and tracked into the nATL). The quiet seasons of '67, '68 leading to an active '69 season could comparatively reflect an active '08 season coming off the quiet seasons of '06 and '07 with some similar development patterns like ’69.

COLD AND WARM EPISODES - from the Climate Prediction Center.

ENSO conditions in '69, though warm most of the year, were neutral around the months of July, August and September (JAS, ASO if you look at the ENSO charts). And, ’67 and ’68 both had nina/neutral dry conditions much like ’06 and ’07(except for the late part of '07). ’86 and ’94 also had similar neutral ENSO conditions that faded into nina/nino, but they were also less active. The ’69 season started slow with the first storm not named until late July. August saw five storms, September saw six, and October saw three storms before tapering off. A few storms formed afterwards, but they didn't hit the CONUS. Obviously, the largest activity that season occurred during the more “neutral” months. Nina to neutral conditions mostly calls for dry conditions over the se, and consequently, could yield fewer troughs. The sEastern US has had more rain this season than it's had in the last two years combined IMO(at least where I live). And, I think tSAmerica has also had more rainfall, too. I think that, also, eventually, points towards neutral and nino conditions.

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PACIFIC NINO OUTLOOK: (above) A majority of ENSO recent forecasts have indicated that La Nina would persist through May-July. But, that apparently has changed as the Pac waters have been warming exponentially in recent days, indicating a move to neutral and possibly nino conditions late in the season. There is considerable spread in the models, with the majority reflecting ENSO neutral conditions (-0.5°C to 0.5°C in the Nino 3.4 region) during the second half of the year.
- Figure provided by the International Research Institute (IRI) for Climate and Society (updated 18 April 2008). ENSO Cycle: Recent evolution, current status and predictions.

I don’t believe the season will be as active as ’69 as far as total storms, but I think we could see the same sort of pattern – season started slow, saw some early Cape Verde systems (perhaps earlier than usual). Until 2005, 1969 held the record for the most active season and certainly contained one of only a few CAT 5 land-falling hurricanes. Camille, devastated the MS coast and became the precedent until Katrina came along at near the same point of landfall. Gerda, a September storm, made landfall as a depression in seFL for a brief time; but, re-entered the Atl and strengthened to a CAT 3. It appeared to be headed for landfall on the upper east coast, until it was picked up by a trough exiting the ne and pushed further out to sea, eventually weakening and land-falling at the tip of Maine and and the Labrador coast. There were a couple of more depressions that formed later in the season in the GOM, Caribbean and in the cATL, but nothing of similar significance. The rest were mostly fish storms. Judging by the surface maps through that summer, the highs off the west coast were not that strong either. The jet-stream dipped down from the nw into the swCONUS, back up towards the mid-west, then out to the ne. And, I think that’s why there were fewer troughs that came across the seCONUS until late in the season.

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OLD SURFACE MAP
from August 17, 1969 - This map shows Camille as it quickly approached the MS coastline. The (met's) handwriting at the bottom of the map says, "later this day Camille down to 901mb, 190mph winds." Notice the weak high off the Atlantic coast - between 1016-1020mb.

But, the big factor, IMO, in ’69 (and this year, too) was/is the B/A High. In the early part of the season, the high was stronger and parked more westerly, even over the seCONUS area. But, there really weren’t any early season storms that developed; so, it had little effect. As the season moved to more neutral ENSO conditions in the late JAS, ASO months, the high became weaker, ranging back and forth between 1016-1020mb, and had moved further out into the Atl and sometimes even more northerly. Obviously, it became the reason many of those storms curved out to sea that year. Had the 1969 high been stronger later in the season and set up further west, the CONUS may have been hit more, considering the number of storms that developed. That saved the east coast, I believe, and also helped to keep the CV storms out of the Caribbean and GOM.

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FROM CSU's "April Forecast" (above) - Best analog years for 2008 with the associated hurricane activity listed for each year. The CSU Extended Forecast.

In summary, as neutral conditions come on, it may give us a slow start, much like ’69 (though ‘69’s early ENSO conditions were warm but fading briefly for a few months). And, it’s possible that we could get an early surprise or two out of the GOM and Caribbean with any deep, straggling troughs. SST’s will catch up soon and grow much warmer. The ITCZ (fairly active so far this season) will soon take its more northerly converging position. And, the MJO may play a factor by that time as well. As neutral conditions become prominent, we could see more CV development early and especially towards peak season – late July, but more so Aug-Sept, with a tapering off in mid-late October. A stronger more southerly high will tend to drive these storms west, again, like in 2007. If it does, then the GOM could come more active and TX could also see a landfall. The GOM and the loop current will be hot and dangerous. Of course, FL is always a potential target with either set up. If the high becomes weaker and sets up more like it did in mid-to-latter part of 1969, then I think seFL and the east coast could see more action this season. And so, I think the high is definitely going to be the tell-tale ticket, more so than anything else this season.

This season won’t be exactly like ’69 as I don’t think quantity and intensity will be quite the same. So, I certainly don’t expect a record-breaking season like ’69 or ’05. But, given the anticipated conditions and timing, it could be quite active with several fish, and possibly two to four potentially dangerous storms for the seCONUS similar to the pattern in ‘69. Of course, my presumption has ZERO validity, probably a really bad interpretation, uneducated and likely the furthest thing from actuality this season. And, I still may change it, up or down, or delete it all together. But, I wanted to give it a shot, kick the tires and take it out for a test drive to see what it'd do! ;P


...about all its April and May devalue is worth! (lol) ;)

MLC's MAY Forecast - 13 named storms, 8 hurricanes, 3 intense

CSU's APRIL Forecast - 15 named storms, 8 hurricanes, 4 intense



Visit Patrap's blog on "Hurricane Preparedness!" - excellent blog...and May is the time to get ready, before season gets here!


NOTE: Constructive criticism, suggestions and comments appreciated.


---------------------------------------------------------

Other BLOGS and updates:

MAY is SEVERE WEATHER MONTH; For the best WU coverage on SEVERE WEATHER, visit Vortfix's "TORNADO SCIENCE, FACTS AND HISTORY" blog This blog explains tornadoes and severe weather and be sure to read through the comments for good info, too. During severe weather, just click on it from the main blog directory - it's usually near the top. It operates almost 24/7 when there's a severe weather outbreak any where along the coastal/southeastern CONUS. Get nearly real-time warnings and radar links. Vort's an avid follower of severe weather with great insight to potentially serious systems.
And, he usually has a great bunch of folks that help, pitching in with posting warnings, radars and insight. Good blog. Be sure to check it out!

Other good tropical blogs on WU here at "TROPICAL LAGNIAPPE". These are from some of WU's most respected, adept weather bloggers. Please check them out! Good info from them, and I always learn something when I visit their blogs and sites.


Is the MJO working?


Got an ITCZ? Scratch it!

Weather456's blog on the ITCZ anomalies




The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

moonlightcowboy's WunderBlog

About moonlightcowboy

"There is no heavier burden than a great potential." - Charles Schultz, in the Peanut's character of Linus.