Hermine hanging around off Northeast coast as Newton hits Baja, brings rain threat to Southwest

Early morning visible satellite image of Hermine off the Northeast coast

Early morning visible satellite image of Hermine off the Northeast coast

The story of Hermine has yet to find its conclusion. The pesky, downright aggravating storm is still milling around off the Northeast coast. Fortunately, the environment combined with marginal sea surface temperatures will limit the amount of deep thunderstorms or convection and we won’t be having to deal with a hurricane just offshore.

As it stands, the system that we once called 99L, for a long time it seemed, is still packing 65 mph winds but those are confined to areas out over the open Atlantic. Onshore wind obs are lower but the seas are rough and with each high tide cycle, the beaches from New England south to parts of North Carolina keep getting chewed up. It’s like a slow, agonizing impact instead of in and out and be done with it. Sadly, it won’t come to an end for a few more days.

The complex steering pattern has resulted in Hermine being left behind and not caught  up in the westerly flow that we usually associate with sweeping tropical storms and hurricanes out to sea. Think of it as a rowdy kid who missed the morning bus. Now they are left to hang out in the neighborhood with no supervision – causing mayhem until another bus comes along. That’s Hermine in a nutshell. It missed the bus and now it’s sitting offshore being a pain in the butt.

About all I can say at this point is watch and wait for it to finally take off later this week. The coastal impacts are mounting but it is better than a direct hit from a true hurricane, I think we can all agree on that. Lucky for all of us, nothing is imminent once Hermine clears the pattern and gets out.

NHC track map showing hurricane Newton moving across the Baja, northwest Mexico and then in to the Southwest U.S.

NHC track map showing hurricane Newton moving across the Baja, northwest Mexico and then in to the Southwest U.S.

Meanwhile, hurricane Newton made landfall in the overnight hours along the Cabo San Lucas area of  the southern Baja peninsula. Top winds were near 90 mph and now the hurricane is headed more north with a turn towards the northeast expected. This will bring Newton across the Baja and in to northwest Mexico where torrential rain will likely move across the region and in to Arizona. We saw this twice in 2014 with Norbert and Odile moving out of the Pacific around this same time frame. Areas such as Tucson could see potentially heavy rains with gusty winds Wednesday and in to Thursday as the remnant low of Newton tracks in to the region. As such, a flash flood watch has been posted for parts of southern Arizona in anticipation of this event.

Elsewhere, the tropics are mostly quiet for now. The global models are suggesting a possible uptick in activity over the coming week to ten days but I am skeptical and for good reason. The models have done a terrible job of prediction genesis or the start of any tropical storms or hurricanes in the Atlantic thus far. We need only look at Hermine as a fine example of this. Conditions are just not very favorable overall with considerable dry air still prevalent in the mid-levels of the atmosphere, acting like a cap keeping a lid of developing thunderstorms over the tropics.

I will have a thorough look at everything during my video discussion which will be posted later this afternoon.

M. Sudduth 9:15AM ET Sept 6

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No real concern about 99L any longer as we focus on other areas over the coming days

Atlantic tropical weather outlook map from the NHC showing the areas of interest and the current position of TS Gaston

Atlantic tropical weather outlook map from the NHC showing the areas of interest and the current position of TS Gaston

Wanted to post some thoughts on 99L this very late hour of Friday night/early Saturday morning. It’s been a long week and tonight I can sleep soundly and not wonder what the future model output will show for the storm that never was.

I also want to comment on the other areas that bear watching as we progress through the weekend. One thing is fairly clear to me: there are no hurricane threats looming so we have that going for us.

As it turned out, the environment just didn’t support the development of the tropical wave that garnered so much attention this past week. Invest area 99L as it become widely known as will just pass in to the Gulf of Mexico from the Florida Straits this weekend with little more than passing squalls. While I can’t say development chances are zero, in my opinion, the chance of this becoming a hurricane is as close to zero as one could ask for. It’s just not going to happen this time. Despite the HWRF model blowing it up run after run in to a formidable hurricane, upper level conditions and the lack of overall organization of the system should keep this a scenario only inside of the computer model’s world.

Now we have a couple of other areas to watch – one in the Gulf of Mexico, the other not far from Bermuda over the Atlantic. Neither system look to develop much in the coming days – part of the overall negative pattern we seem to be in right now. Even TS Gaston is struggling as of late but it is forecast by most of the global model guidance to bust through the shear and other limiting factors to finally become a classic open Atlantic hurricane. It too poses no threat to land and I don’t see it ever becoming an issue except for an increase in ocean swells depending on how strong it gets and how far west it tracks.

East Pacific tropical storm Madeline is one to watch if you live in or are planning a trip to Hawaii for next week

East Pacific tropical storm Madeline is one to watch if you live in or are planning a trip to Hawaii for next week

In the east Pacific, tropical storm Madeline is forecast to strengthen and become a hurricane as it moves in the general direction of Hawaii next week. Water temps in the region are running a little above normal so it’s possible that Madeline could make it to Hawaii as a tropical storm. It’s tough as heck to hit the Big Island from the east so we’ll see how this pans out. There is plenty of time to monitor the situation and react as needed as we know more about the track and intensity of this Pacific tropical storm.

Last but not least, I will be watching with keen interest as a new tropical wave emerges from Africa early next week. The GFS in particular has been very consistent in developing it right away and moving west for quite a while. The steering pattern that the GFS has been showing is one that could keep what ever might develop moving along just south of 20N latitude for several days at least. That being said, I do not see this being a threat to the Lesser Antilles, not in the modeling anyway. It’s early and it’s prime time for the Atlantic hurricane season and we know how quickly things can change. This next system will be something to keep an eye assuming the modeling is correct and it does in fact develop. Time will tell.

That’s it for now, time for some deep sleep and then more posts coming over the weekend.

M. Sudduth 12:35 AM ET Aug 27

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Two tropical waves to monitor in the Atlantic

Satellite photo with invest areas 96L and 97L indicated

Satellite photo with invest areas 96L and 97L indicated (click to view full size)

We now have two areas to keep tabs on in the deep tropics. Both systems are far from land and really don’t have much of a future ahead of them due to limiting factors in the atmosphere.

The first, invest area 96L, is the eastern most tropical wave with a weak surface low associated with it. Overall, the system has become better organized since yesterday. The development of new convection or thunderstorm activity seems to be persisting though it is not very strong due to weak instability and overall upward motion in the region. This will likely keep 96L from strengthening too much in the coming days as it moves steadily westward over the open Atlantic.

Next we have area 97L which is moving a lot faster towards the west due to strong high pressure to its north. Convection is limited right now and the quick pace of movement will likely help to hinder additional development as the wave of low pressure continues westward.

It does appear that portions of the Leeward Islands will experience a period of squally weather as the tropical wave passes through this weekend. Interests in the region, especially boaters out in the open water, need to be aware of this system.

The fast movement of 97L means that what ever energy survives the coming days could end up in the western Caribbean early next week and while computer models are not indicating development there, we’ll have to watch to be sure. I still think it is just a little early to expect prolific development out of these tropical waves just yet. Give it another couple of weeks and things will probably be different and this makes sense considering the normal uptick in activity as we head in to August.

Meanwhile, the eastern Pacific refuses to shut down completely. We now have invest area 91E which is well on its way to developing well off the coast of Mexico. Fortunately, the steering pattern remains locked in for now and what ever manages to get going will move farther out in to the Pacific and not be an issue for Mexico.

I will have more here over the weekend.

M. Sudduth 11 AM ET July 29

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Tropics not an issue this weekend

Two areas of interest in the east Pacific this weekend

Two areas of interest in the east Pacific this weekend

Other than a weak area of low pressure over southeast North Carolina today, the tropics are of little concern this weekend. The NHC did issue an outlook for the small low pressure area over the coastal waters of the Carolinas this morning but it is not going to do much more than bring some periods of rain and perhaps an increase in winds. Pressures are fairly high in the area and the low center is over land now and this will preclude any further development from taking place.

Elsewhere in the Atlantic Basin, all is quiet for now. None of the global models indicate any significant chances for development for at least the next week. Once we get in to July, a favorable MJO pulse may set off an active period but we’ll deal with that when and if it comes.

In the east Pacific, the NHC is keeping tabs on invest areas 94-E and 95-E. Both are situated well to the south and west of Mexico and pose no threat to land. All of the available computer model guidance suggests that at least one of these systems will go on to become a tropical storm early next week. Fortunately, there is no indication that either syustem will impact land directly though an increase in surf is possible along portions of the Mexican coastline – depending on how strong either one of the areas gets as they develop.

Enjoy the weekend, it will be a little wet and breezy for parts of the Carolinas but elsewhere, things look great for the first full weekend of summer. I’ll have more here tomorrow.

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