Bonnie leaving, now we turn attention to the Gulf of Mexico

Tropical depression Bonnie well off the NC coast this morning, finally moving away

Tropical depression Bonnie well off the NC coast this morning, finally moving away

After hanging around the Carolina coast for several days, the year’s second named storm is finally moving on. Tropical depression Bonnie is far enough off the North Carolina coast to finally have taken the rain with it. This trend will continue and eventually, the system will become absorbed within a larger weather pattern and that will be that – no more issues from Bonnie.

In the east Pacific, invest area 91-E is struggling a bit as of late with limited convection associated with it. As such, the NHC has lowered the chance for further development to 60% over the next five days. The system remains well to the southwest of Mexico and there are no indications that it will be turning back towards land even if it does manage to develop.

Now we turn our attention to the Gulf of Mexico where it is possible that we will have to deal with a broad low pressure area that is forecast to take shape over the coming days.

Computer models are in generally good agreement that energy arriving from the Caribbean Sea will gradually consolidate around the Yucatan peninsula this weekend, eventually making its way in to the southern Gulf of Mexico where it could become a tropical storm.

GFS computer model output showing weak low pressure in the Gulf of Mexico early next week. Notice how almost all of the "heavy weather" is located on the east side of the low, a sign of a generally disogranied, sheared system

GFS computer model output showing weak low pressure in the Gulf of Mexico early next week. Notice how almost all of the “heavy weather” is located on the east side of the low, a sign of a generally disorganized, sheared system

Before folks get too worried about this, let me say that this is not something that appears to be a big wind and surge issue, if it forms at all. What does concern me is the chance for heavy rain for parts of the Florida peninsula next week. As we have seen in Texas with the continued bombardment of rain there, freshwater flooding is a big deal, even coming from so-called “weak” or “lopsided” tropical storms. Even though nothing like that has affected Texas so far this year, rain is rain and the resulting flooding can be devastating and dangerous.

Taking a look at the latest GFS computer model, we can clearly see the overall disorganized look to this potential system at around the 96 hour mark. The low pressure center hangs back over the Gulf while most of the rain and any wind would be located on the east side. This is very typical of June tropical storms due to the fact that upper level winds are still strong across the region, pushing the system faster than it can line up vertically and become better organized, such as what we would see in a hurricane. In this case, even though water temperatures are warm enough for a hurricane, the pattern does not look anywhere near conducive enough for that to take place.

Right now, the NHC is giving the future disturbance a 50% chance of developing. We’ll see if this goes up over the coming days, which I suspect it might. However, what could end up happening is that we just see a broad, strung out low pressure area develop, almost like a frontal wave instead of a true tropical storm, and head towards Florida with plenty of rain.

Elsewhere in the tropics, nothing of concern brewing and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. I’ll have an in-depth look at everything I mentioned in this post during my daily video discussion which will be posted later this afternoon.

M. Sudduth 7:10 AM ET June 3

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Probably going to see first hurricane develop in east Pacific this week – also, Atlantic season begins tomorrow

Invest area 91-E in the east Pacific has a good chance of developing in to the season's first hurricane for that part of the world. Forecast models show it moving away from Mexico

Invest area 91-E in the east Pacific has a good chance of developing in to the season’s first hurricane for that part of the world. Forecast models show it moving away from Mexico

The east Pacific hurricane season began on May 15 and so far, nothing has developed. I think that changes this week as a favorable pattern for convective activity moves across the region.

As of early this morning, the NHC was monitoring an area of elongated low pressure well to the south of the Baja peninsula. The forecast calls for it to gradually become better organized with an 80% chance of it developing in to a tropical cyclone within the next five days. In fact, computer models suggest it will become a hurricane over the fairly warm water of the east Pacific.

Those same models also project a path away from land which means the system can get as strong as it wants without any impact to Mexico.

In the Atlantic, the remnants of short-lived tropical storm Bonnie continue to hang out near the Carolina coast with occasional bursts of limited convection taking place. Right now, conditions just aren’t very favorable for regeneration to occur, especially considering that water temps are marginal at best in the vicinity of the remnant low. However, its presence does mean the chance for heavy, but spotty, rain will persist over the next few days across parts of North and South Carolina, especially the immediate coast. In addition, the risk of rip currents still exists so be sure to check your local surf conditions if heading to the ocean this week. The low is forecast by the major models to slowly move out by the end of the week.

Tomorrow begins the Atlantic hurricane season, at least officially. We have already had two named systems form: Alex in January which became a hurricane, and most recently, Bonnie just off the Southeast coast. Fortunately, there is very little evidence to suggest that this will lead to a hyper-active season for the Atlantic. Since neither system formed from pure tropical origins, we cannot point to them and say with any certainty that they are a harbinger of things to come. The meat of the hurricane season doesn’t begin until late August – if the months leading up to that point feature true tropical development, including any hurricanes, then maybe we can expect a busier season than average. Otherwise, most of the larger, easier to identify puzzle pieces suggest a season with roughly 6 to 8 more hurricanes forming. Out of those it would not be unreasonable to suggest that perhaps 2 or 3 will become category three or higher. There are other less certain aspects of the season that could lead to higher or lower overall numbers, we simply won’t know until we’re about there unfortunately. So, it’s best to be ready for anything. As people witnessed first-hand along parts of I-95 in SC and GA this weekend, even a weak tropical storm can bring mayhem.

Tonight I am producing a special live broadcast for our subscribers and will officially launch the new generation of our 10-year old subscription service. It’s called “HurricaneTrack Insider” and will feature live video, special tracking maps, live weather data, our own chat for members only, exclusive access to newly released videos and updates and more. We’ve had over 450 people become subscribers over the years, the number waxes and wanes with the seasonal hurricane activity but the core group remains – some of whom have been members since day 1 on August 1, 2005. Tonight, we celebrate over 10 years of providing unique, innovative hurricane information unlike anything else out there. The live broadcast will be carried ad-free on our subscriber Ustream channel and begins at 8pm ET for about an hour or so. If you are a current member, please join us and if you can’t we’ll archive it immediately and post the link in the chat. If you wish to become a member or need to sign up again after being away, now is a great time to do so. Click here for more info and to sign up today.

Tomorrow, I will have a special in-depth post on what I see for the coming season and how we plan to cover any potential hurricane landfalls.

M. Sudduth 9:20 AM ET May 31

 

 

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