Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Active Pacific, Quiet Atlantic

It’s far too soon to begin talking about the “Fat Lady Singing”.   Remember that was the Yogi Berra line about “ the game isn’t over until the Fat Lady sings”.   I have used it to signal the end to our Hurricane season threat which historically plunges by the first week of October & is over by November 1st.   This year we have a full blown El Nino that has wacked down most storms in the Atlantic so far.  I was reading a paper indicating that in past strong El Nino years, the tropical Atlantic completely shuts down late September into October.   Wow, wouldn’t that be nice?  That means we only have another 3-4 weeks to monitor the Tropics before I can tell ya the “Fat Lady” is singing.   Right now, there is nothing cooking out in the Atlantic except Fred and he is barely hanging on.   The cold is building in northern Canada (30s & 40s) and it’s only a matter of weeks before “dem fronts”  start coming.  As a warm weather freak, the only thing I like about the cold is it kills the hurricane threat.

 

Locally, satellite loops still show several swirls of low pressure along an upper trough that stretches from the Ohio Valley down into the western Gulf.  Yesterday the trough was along the Texas coast giving them a rainy day.  The trough shifted over us today and it appears to be sliding slowly to our south and east.  If that trend continues, we should see more sunshine on Thursday with fewer showers.  Of course that will mean hotter temperatures again back to 90+.  Today’s clouds and showers kept us a pleasant 85.  Stay tuned!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Dry Spell Could Be Ending?

When I lived up north, forecasting rainfall usually involved the movement of lows & fronts.  They could be tracked traveling across the country and their speed usually could be measured.  Oh how different down South, especially during the summer months.  Fronts mostly stop coming south so the driver of any showers is either daytime heating, sea breeze fronts or upper disturbances.  An upper disturbance sits over East Texas tonight where Galveston received over 2 ½ inches during the past 24 hours.  A wide area of showers is approaching our coast much like last night.  If the upper low stays put, most of these showers will dissipate before moving far inland.  However, any slight drift to the east could have us in the clouds and showers as Houston was today.  Their high was only 79 while ours was 92.  Computer models keep us staying mainly dry , but reality (radar) is showing some rain moving inland.   Don’t be surprised if we finally break our 10 day dry spell on Wednesday.

 

The President is on his climate agenda all week traveling all over the country burning all kinds of jet fuel.   What a carbon footprint!

Monday, August 31, 2015

Good Bye Summer !

Historically, the 3 hottest months of the year are June, July & August, often referred to as “meteorological” summer.  It doesn’t mean we’re done with 90+.  We’ve seen 90+ temps into early October.  However, the deeper we get into September, the lower the night time lows get.  Record lows start in the low 60s dipping into the 50s and into the 40s by the last week.   The beast we call Summer is not gone yet, but it is heading towards the barn door. 

 

Hurricane Fred was the 1st storm in modern record keeping to reach hurricane strength coming off of Africa.  It has battered the Cape Verde Islands but already has weakened back to a Tropical Storm and will fizzle out in the next 1-2 days.   In the eastern Gulf there is a weak circulation that could be the remains of last week’s Trop. Storm Erika.  With strong SW shear over most of the Gulf, development, if any, would be slow to occur.  We are between the moisture over the eastern Gulf and a slug of tropical moisture rotating around an upper low in south Texas.  Computer models are keeping us mostly dry this week, but a slight shift to the east of the Texas upper low would result in higher rain chances here.   Stay tuned!

 

 

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Erika Downgraded

Tropical Storm Erika, once predicted to become a Hurricane, has failed to survive her journey over the mountains of Hispaniola.  Daylight satellite loops indicate there is a small swirl of clouds north of Cuba, but all the T-Storms have been left far behind.  As this small swirl reaches the Gulf, it will encounter strong SW wind shear making regeneration highly unlikely.  The National Hurricane Center has dropped all warnings for Erika as she is expected to only bring some heavy rains to Florida the next 2 days.  Louisiana can expect no impacts from what’s left of Erika.  The rest of the Atlantic is quiet, however, Hawaii is bracing for a powerful Cat. 4 hurricane lurking to their southeast.   It is expected to weaken, but still have enough wind & rains to impact the islands.