Saturday, October 6, 2018

Finally Something to Track, Not Michael yet...

As many of you who follow the NHC website know, they began issuing advisories on “Potential Tropical Cyclone” 14 (hint Michael) this afternoon.  Their first official center line track placed landfall near Destin.  Tonight they have shifted that track farther to the EAST (away from us) near Seaside/Sea Grove Beach.  IF that proves to be reality, NOLA/SE LA/MS would see very little impacts from this system as the majority of the wind/rains/surge would stay east of the center line.  Could that change?  Unlikely since there is currently an upper low over the northern Gulf that is creating strong westerly wind shear, plus there is a deepening trough over the west coast that is moving to the east.   Both factors should turn future Tropical Storm Michael eastward away from us, which is typical of October hurricane climatology.    The deeper we get into October, the harder it is for tropical systems to reach us.  An exception was hurricane Juan in 1985 which made landfall in late October as a Cat. 1.   Satellite loops tonight show some increase in T-storms around where the center should be, but it remains apparent that upper level WSW wind shear will prevent any rapid  development.  What to watch for?   See if the centerline stays east of the Yucatan Peninsula.  Any westward motion would be bad for us.  Currently the northward motion is good for us and I would be shocked to see any major changes to the NHC forecast.  The real benefit to us will be the COOLER and drier air that will filter in on the back side of this system later next week.  I have placed a call into the “Fat Lady’s” agent to make sure she is available for late next week.    Long range computer guidance indicates a much cooler pattern setting up for the second half of October.  It’s about time we say “turn out the lights, the party is over” for this hurricane season.    In the short term, we’ll still feel summer like for the next 2-3 days, but hope is around the corner…and it is a short block.  Stay tuned!

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