El Niño Watch issued by NOAA; Western Caribbean development next week?

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:55 PM GMT on June 05, 2009

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NOAA's Climate Prediction Center issued an El Niño Watch yesterday, saying "that conditions are favorable for a transition from neutral to El Niño conditions during June - August 2009". The pattern of changes in surface winds, upper-level winds, sea surface temperatures, and deeper water heat content are all consistent with what has been observed during previous developing El Niños. As I discussed in detail in last Friday's post, most of our more advanced El Niño computer models are predicting a weak El Niño event for the coming Atlantic hurricane season. If this indeed occurs, it is likely that Atlantic hurricane activity will be suppressed due to the strong upper-level winds an El Niño usually brings to the tropical Atlantic, creating high wind shear that tears hurricanes apart.


Figure 1. Departure from average of the heat content of the upper 300 meters of the ocean in the Equatorial Eastern Pacific. Much of this increase in heat content is due to a large area of waters 2 - 4°C warmer than average at the thermocline (a depth of 50 - 150 meters). The heat content of the ocean has been steadily increasing since January, consistent with a developing El Niño episode. Image credit: NOAA's Climate Prediciton Center.

Western Caribbean development possible next week
An area of disturbed weather has developed over Central America and the adjacent waters of the Eastern Pacific and Western Caribbean, associated with a tropical wave interacting with the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) in the Eastern Pacific. This disturbance has generated 1 - 2 inches of rain over Costa Rica and western Panama over the past day, and is likely to bring 4 - 6 more inches of rain to those areas and Nicaragua over the next 3 - 4 days, as the storm drifts northwards into the Western Caribbean. The subtropical jet stream, which is currently bringing high wind shear to the Caribbean, is expected to shift northwards next week, bringing low wind shear to the region. The last few runs of several of our major dynamical computer weather forecast models have been pointing to the possible development of a tropical depression southwest of Jamaica by Thursday of next week. Heavy rains from the disturbance should spread into Jamaica and Cuba by Thursday and Friday, and may affect the Bahamas, Haiti, and South Florida 7 - 8 days from now.


Figure 2. Visible satellite image of the Central American disturbance expected to cross over into the Western Caribbean next week.

I'll have an update this weekend, probably on Sunday.

Jeff Masters

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775. IKE
Mobile,AL. extended....

.LONG TERM (SUNDAY THROUGH NEXT SATURDAY)...UPPER TROUGH OVER
EASTERN GEORGIA AND NORTH FLORIDA TODAY WILL MOVE UP ALONG THE
EASTERN SEABOARD SUNDAY...WITH A DRY NORTHWESTERLY FLOW PERSISTING
THROUGH SUNDAY. THE UPPER FLOW PATTERN FLATTENS OUT A BIT MONDAY
INTO TUESDAY AS A SERIES OF WEAK UPPER DISTURBANCES PASS TO THE
NORTHWEST. THE SURFACE RIDGE AXIS BRIDGING WESTWARD FROM THE
WESTERN ATLANTIC INTO THE CENTRAL GULF WILL PROVIDE A LIGHT
SOUTHERLY LOW LEVEL FLOW THROUGH THE MIDDLE OF NEXT WEEK. MOISTURE
DEPTH INCREASES JUST ENOUGH BY THE MIDDLE OF NEXT WEEK TO EXPECT
ISOLATED SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS...WITH A SLIGHTLY HIGHER COVERAGE
OVER THE NORTHERN COUNTIES WHERE THE INFLUENCE OF PASSING WEAK
MIDLEVEL DISTURBANCES ALONG THE SOUTHERN EDGE OF THE WESTERLIES
COULD PROVIDE BETTER FOCUS. OVERALL, THE EXTENDED FORECAST HAS
CHANGED LITTLE ON THIS PACKAGE WITH TEMPS NEAR SEASONAL NORMS. OF
INTEREST THIS MORNING...THE 00Z GFS STILL ADVERTISES A TROPICAL
CYCLONE IN THE WESTERN CARIBBEAN AND FAR SOUTHERN GULF NEXT
WEEKEND. THE GFS IS A CLEAR OUTLIER ON THIS SCENARIO WITH OTHER
GLOBAL MODELS NOT NEARLY AS ROBUST WITH THIS DEVELOPMENT. IT IS TOO
EARLY AND CONFIDENCE IS WAY TOO LOW RIGHT NOW TO HANG OUR HAT ON
THIS.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
'morning all! :)

Here's a quick update on our team's preparations for this hurricane season.

We officially contracted Abacast.com to stream the Remote Hurricane Weather Station's [RHWS] live webcam. In our extensive testing, we were 'xtreme'ly pleased with Abacast. Out of over 1 million frames broadcast, only 15,000 frames were dropped. That is flat out amazing!

Today and tomorrow, I finish outfitting the hurricane van. When Monday rolls around, I'll be able to take off to a projected landfall area at the drop of a hat.

We've had some issues with VerizonWireless and its customer service providing incomplete information about its broadband services. We're still going to use them when we link up the RHWS, but our displeasure with them has been noted.

Of final note, my personal work with the GOES East Infrared Hurricane Sector animations is very satisfying. For some years now, it was a real labor of love, emphasis on the labor part. But now, it's a fairly simple and straight-forward process. Everyone will be thrilled with the high definition results I'm achieving.

Have a great day!

CycloneOz---

PS: [/me rubs my hands together at the prospect of what the Miami Dolphins are going to do to their competition this year...Bwahahahahahahaha!!!!] :)
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773. IKE
From the Tallahassee,FL. extended discussion...

.LONG TERM (MONDAY NIGHT-SATURDAY)...MID-LEVEL WEAKNESS OFF THE FL
ATLANTIC COAST WILL BE REPLACED BY EASTWARD EXPANSION OF RIDGE TO
THE WEST THROUGH THE MIDDLE OF THE WEEK. MEANWHILE...THE SURFACE
RIDGE AXIS WILL REMAIN SOUTH OF THE CWA...WHICH WILL PROMOTE A
WESTERLY FLOW. LATER IN THE WEEK...BOTH THE GFS AND GFS ENSEMBLE
MEAN (GEM) INDICATE A SERIES OF SHORT WAVES TRANSLATING EASTWARD
FROM THE CENTRAL PLAINS THROUGH THE OH/TN VALLEYS...WHICH WILL
SUPPRESS THE RIDGE SLIGHTLY. IT IS INTERESTING TO NOTE THAT THE PAST
SEVERAL RUNS OF THE GFS HAVE BEEN SPINNING UP A LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM
OVER THE WESTERN CARRIBEAN LATE IN WEEK AND TAKING IT NORTHWEST
ACROSS WESTERN CUBA AND INTO THE SOUTHERN GULF NEXT WEEKEND. BOTH
THE EURO AND GEM ARE MUCH WEAKER AND SLOWER WITH THIS LOW. IN EITHER
CASE...THE SUBTROPICAL RIDGE WILL MAINTAIN A RATHER WARM AND DRIER
THAN NORMAL PATTERN FOR A CHANGE. DAYTIME POPS WILL BE BELOW CLIMO
(20-30 PERCENT)...WHILE TEMPS WILL AVERAGE ABOUT 5 DEGREES ABOVE
CLIMO.

Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
KEY TERM NOT YET ADDED TO LIST

cantorecasting
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771. IKE
Looks like it's festering down there.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
770. IKE
Look at the vort at 850 mb's....

Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Snow season kicks off
Alex Krisman,
Saturday June 6, 2009

The Australian snow season officially kicks off this Queens' birthday long weekend. Luckily, this will coincide with a flurry of snowfall from late Saturday.

The heaviest falls are expected on Sunday in advance of a cold front, with 10 to 20 centimetres expected, and over 30 centimetres possible by Tuesday. As the mercury drops over the next few days the snowline will progressively lower to about 1300 metres by Tuesday. This should provide a good base for the start of the ski season with cold overnight temperatures allowing for plenty of snow-making into next week.

From late Tuesday the snowfall will contract to southern resorts such as Mount Buller and Mount Baw Baw before clearing further into the week.

- Weatherzone
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768. IKE
Quoting Weather456:
Here's an interesting twist. The tropical wave nearing point of genesis but notice that potent ridge to the north.



I think there's more high pressure forecast to the blob's north, then what was forecast 2-3 days ago by the models.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Quoting slickasatick:
IN FACT I DO BELIEVE THE MODELS ARE OUT TO LUNCH LOOKING AT THE MID LEVELS. I WONDER HOW MANY PEOPLE HERE ON THIS BLOG MERELY COPY AND PASTE OTHERS OPINIONS FROM OTHER FORUMS AND CHEAT BY READING AND POSTING THE NHC DISCUSSION. BECAUSE I BET YOU NOT MANY HERE HAVE ANYWHERE NEAR A CLUE ABOUT THIS SORT OF STUFF COMPARED TO THE NHC.


Yes Stormtop we know it is you.
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For those of you who believe sunspots may affect weather... From the American Radio Relay League(ARRL)

NASA Releases New Predictions for Solar Cycle 24

An international panel of experts -- led by the National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and sponsored by NASA -- has
released a new prediction for the next solar cycle: Solar Cycle 24
will peak in May 2013 with a below-average number of sunspots. "If
our prediction is correct, Solar Cycle 24 will have a peak sunspot
number of 90, the lowest of any cycle since 1928 when Solar Cycle 16
peaked at 78," said panel chairman Doug Biesecker of NOAA's Space
Weather Prediction Center (SWPC). This report clarifies a NOAA
report from earlier this month that stated that Solar Cycle 24 would
bring "90 sunspots per day on average."

The latest forecast revises an earlier prediction issued in 2007. At
that time, a sharply divided panel believed solar minimum would come
in March 2008 followed by either a strong solar maximum in 2011, or
a weak solar maximum in 2012. "It turns out that none of our models
were totally correct," said Dean Pesnell of the Goddard Space Flight
Center (GSFC) and NASA's lead representative on the panel. "The Sun
is behaving in an unexpected and very interesting way."

In 2007, experts varied in their predictions on when the solar cycle
would peak and how strong it would be. In April of that year, NOAA,
in coordination with an international panel of solar experts,
predicted that the next 11-year cycle of solar storms "would start
in March 2008, plus or minus six months, and peak in late 2011 or
mid-2012." In the cycle forecast issued in April 2007, half of the
panel predicted a "moderately strong cycle of 140 sunspots, plus or
minus 20, expected to peak in October 2011. The other half predicted
a moderately weak cycle of 90 sunspots, plus or minus 10, peaking in
August 2012. An average solar cycle ranges from 75 to 155 sunspots.
The late decline of Cycle 23 has helped shift the panel away from
its earlier leaning toward a strong Cycle 24. The group is evenly
split between a strong and a weak cycle."

At a meeting of the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco in
December 2007, David Hathaway of NASA's Marshall Space Flight
Center, along with colleague Robert Wilson, said that Solar Cycle 24
"looks like it's going to be one of the most intense cycles since
record-keeping began almost 400 years ago." They said they believe
the next solar maximum should peak around 2010 with a sunspot number
of 160, plus or minus 25. "This would make it one of the strongest
solar cycles of the past 50 years -- which is to say, one of the
strongest in recorded history." Four of the five biggest cycles on
record have come in the past 50 years. "Cycle 24 should fit right
into that pattern," Hathaway said.

Right now -- June 2009 -- the solar cycle is in a valley, the
deepest of the past century. In 2008 and 2009, the Sun showed some
of the lowest sunspot counts on record, as well as weak solar winds
and a low solar irradiance, going more than two years without a
significant solar flare. "In our professional careers, we've never
seen anything quite like it," Pesnell said. "Solar minimum has
lasted far beyond the date we predicted in 2007."

In recent months, however, Pesnell said that the Sun has begun to
show some small signs of life: Small sunspots and "proto-sunspots"
are popping up with increasing frequency. Enormous currents of
plasma on the Sun's surface are gaining strength and slowly drifting
toward its equator. Radio astronomers have detected a tiny but
significant uptick in solar radio emissions. All these things are
precursors of an awakening Solar Cycle 24 and form the basis for the
panel's new, almost unanimous forecast.

Pesnell cautioned optimism, telling the ARRL that there is an "error
bar of /- 20." This means Solar Cycle 24's sunspot number could be
as high as 110, or as low as 70. "Based upon my own personal
research, I don't think we'll see 90 [sunspots in Solar Cycle 24],"
he said.

When asked if such a low number foretold the beginnings of a Maunder
Minimum
, Pesnell said that a Maunder Minimum takes several cycles to
appear: "Sunspots [in solar cycles] leading up to the Maunder
Minimum took several cycles to disappear. I really can't predict
what will happen in Solar Cycle 25. What we're seeing now is
something that look likes a sunspot, but it looks as if someone has
come along and 'stomped' on it, creating a multitude of little
things. We don't have a name for this and we've never seen anything
like it before."

There could be more surprises, panelists acknowledge -- and more
revisions to the forecast. "Go ahead and mark your calendar for May
2013," Pesnell said. "But use a pencil."

And from Wikipedia:
The Maunder Minimum coincided with the middle %u2014 and coldest part %u2014 of the Little Ice Age, during which Europe and North America, and perhaps much of the rest of the world, were subjected to bitterly cold winters. Whether there is a causal connection between low sunspot activity and cold winters is the subject of ongoing debate
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Next week will definitely be interesting. We have the WWDC where Apple might announce a new iPhone, and the possibility of Tropical Storm Ana.
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Here's an interesting twist. The tropical wave nearing point of genesis but notice that potent ridge to the north.

Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting IKE:


Yeah, I saw that. Not sure I believe the 6Z GFS...back to taking it ENE.



I had a feeling it would do that. Post: 742.

The forecasted shallow layer steering flow supports the 00Z while the forecasted deep layer supports the 06Z solution. The GFS does not have a good handle on the track due to what appears to be a problamatic upper trough.

Other models do show a weakening in the high in the Atlantic, but it seems the consensus is due north between the 06Z and 00Z runs.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
762. IKE
Quoting Weather456:
Morning, Ike, did you see the 00Z GFS?


Yeah, I saw that. Not sure I believe the 6Z GFS...back to taking it ENE.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Morning, Ike, did you see the 00Z GFS?
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
760. IKE
06Z NAM
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Quoting slickasatick:
I THINK THERE WILL BE A HURRICANE IN THE WESTER GOM AND IT WILL TURN INTO A CAT 3 AND SLAM INTO TAMPA NEXT WEEK. THE FOLLOWING HAS BEEN A WEATHER SYNOPSIS FROM TICK.


**POOF!**
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Amazing comment, homelesswanderer.

Myself, I didn't have a true hurricane experience like a lot of people here, and I'm nowhere near as experienced as most here. I've learned a ton from people here, basically anyone who's regular I've learned something from in my short time here, and I really am thankful for that.

Being so far from the coast, about 600 miles from it here in Dayton, Ohio, it may seem odd that I'm as interested in tropical storms as I am. I really got interested when I was six years old, when I decided to track Hurricane Erika in 1997. From there, it was basically just something I loved, though I knew quite little for real until recently. I remember Bonnie knocking Jim Cantore down in North Carolina, which was quite an interesting moment for someone like me, seeing something from nature be able to do that.

I got away from it for a few years, then 2004 came and I started near the beginning of the season, and of course it was a big year. In 2005 I was in amazement and I can't help but wonder what it was like here that year. I knew enough then to have a good feeling the New Orleans levees would have trouble holding because of the direction it was coming in.

I found the NHC site in late 2007 and the JTWC in 2008. I was actually looking for information on western pacific storms in 2008 when I stumbled across this site and I couldn't really deny a place with knowledge like this.

Really, I do get fascinated by strong storms, but as I mentioned earlier, when they're strong I'd rather them be out to sea because I don't like to see any damage. My main threat up here is tornadoes and not hurricanes, but seeing the damage those can do I do know what natural disasters can be like. I'm lucky nothing hit where I am, however.


Yeah this got kind of long, sorry, but I got out what I wanted to say. tl;dr maybe.
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img src="hurricane" alt="" />

Rita was a monster! The red dot was where my house was. I don't know if we got that western eyewall or not. But everything for a hundred (or more) miles inland was laid flat, snapped in two, destroyed , or blown, south. It was surreal. Theres a highway that runs North/south roughly along her track. When returning home along it the trees and power poles were like giant arrows pointing the way home. One things for sure, you'll definitely see things youve never seen before after a hurricane.

Yeah Rita is my reason for being here. After Humberto then Edouard I decided I need to find out all I can about these things. And I knew Ike was coming here before most people depending on the local media. I knew from the slosh models shown/explained by Dr. Masters and StormW that Ike was not your average Caregory 2 hurricane. I was 10 days from the Gustav evacuation. I was tired and burned out and came real close to not leaving. But with some gentle persuation from some WU members, and some not so subtle warnings from the NHC I left. And sure enough it was bad. Ike pushed water over I-10 in my county. You can see from map that it is not on the coast. Not to mention its an elevated highway.There was 20 feet of water on main street. We lucked out on some high ground. The only things we got from Ike were half a fishing pole and part of a bait bucket and a fortunately aimed broken pine.

So, do I wanna know if a storm's coming my way??? You betcha! If that makes me a westwishgulftexascaster, I can live with that. I too find things about hurricanes fascinating. How it forms, steering currents, wind shear, etc. But I don't think its abnormal for someone to want to know if the thing is coming their way. I would think it all the more odd if you DIDN'T want to know where its going. Yes some ask more questions than others but maybe they're just being more honest. And some of us are younger and/or more inexperienced than others. I don't think they mean any harm or disrespect for what someone has been through. I run from hurricanes like theyre trying to light me on fire. But I do admit, if you ever find yourself in a surprise hurricane, that you knew nothing about ( i won't name any names here) lol. It is terrifying and exhillerating all at once. Danger will do that for you. Some like it. Some don't. And sometimes we need those who do. You can pretty much weed out the nut jobs and ignore them. And for crying out loud, how can anyone be surprised that these model runs are so much of an issue on this blog?? On other sites there are whole blogs dedicated to this very subject. There's probably something we can all learn from each other. I know I've learned something from probably everyone of you. Thank you, BTW. :) So lets get along and settle in for another season.
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00Z shows a Big Nada Ike..

...good.

The youngsters are trying to Destroy yer State,hourly seems..LOL
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 419 Comments: 127357
Quoting Patrap:
Enjoy a Tangerine


I prefer oranges, thanks.

Also, I don't see all that much out of the ECMWF. Am I missing something when I look at it?
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Enjoy a Tangerine
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 419 Comments: 127357
752. IKE
00Z ECMWF
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Weathermen & D-Day June 6 1944
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 419 Comments: 127357
Quoting WeatherStudent:
what are the other models saying this morning, 456?


Here are the models so you don't have to ask any more. Link
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Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:
I still doubt anything strong will form, but I can see another hybrid low/depression forming like two weeks ago with buckets of rain.


If Upper Level Conditions are favorable it would get interesting.
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Quoting slickasatick:
IN FACT I DO BELIEVE THE MODELS ARE OUT TO LUNCH LOOKING AT THE MID LEVELS. I WONDER HOW MANY PEOPLE HERE ON THIS BLOG MERELY COPY AND PASTE OTHERS OPINIONS FROM OTHER FORUMS AND CHEAT BY READING AND POSTING THE NHC DISCUSSION. BECAUSE I BET YOU NOT MANY HERE HAVE ANYWHERE NEAR A CLUE ABOUT THIS SORT OF STUFF COMPARED TO THE NHC.


I love the caps...
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The GFS is showing 1000-500 mb steering, which is required for weak systems but the deep layer steering do not comply with the 00Z solution. The track will shift many times until something forms.

===============================

Highly tropical, not hybrid

Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting slickasatick:
THE FOLLOWING HAS BEEN A WEATHER SYNOPSIS FROM TICK.


Sounds like a Bushism to me.
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thats like 180hrs out or something...soo many things can happen to make that not!
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Quoting Weather456:
The 00Z GFS thinks the upper trough will not be as deep as expected an takes the system further west.


I want to see this carry on to the next couple of model runs before I can accept it. But it is an interesting shift.
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The 00Z GFS thinks the upper trough will not be as deep as expected an takes the system further west based on the enviromental steering flow.

Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting futuremet:
Good night

I only stayed up so late to do some homework.

I'll leave with this while I'm snoozin



scarecasting! lol
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Quoting Drakoen:


I would third it, but i'm trying to behave LOL


LOL...
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Quoting KoritheMan:


I still vividly remember Rita, and how scared I was. Rita was initially forecast to come damn close to where I was (like, traveling between Baton Rouge and New Orleans like Betsy did, except Rita would be coming from the west, due to the approach of an upper-level trough) as a major hurricane.

I only got the weak side of Katrina, and Rita threatened to bring me conditions that were far worse.

Thankfully, Rita jogged 250 miles to the west, and all I got from her was rain and the occasional Tornado Warning.

I actually received around 6-8 inches of rain from Rita within a 24 hour period, and gusts came close to exceeding 60 mph at times. Rita was an impressive storm to be sure, given its weakened state at landfall, and how far the both of us were in relation to its center at the time of landfall.

I also remember that the thing that surprised me the most about Rita was that it flooded portions of New Orleans again, though that thankfully didn't take too long to get repaired, nor did it do much damage.

I felt really bad for NOLA in 2005.


Yea Rita was Nasty considering it made landfall on the opposite side of the state.
Rita's wind damage in NOLA was a minimum even though we had gusts to 60mph because Katrina had already knocked everything else down.

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Quoting Drakoen:


How democratic.
Is that a good thing or bad thing?

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Good night

I only stayed up so late to do some homework.

I'll leave with this while I'm snoozin

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Quoting BahaHurican:
Well, the best weather observers / forecasters here get their points across regardless of how wonderful their language / writing style is.

Goodnight.


How democratic.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 29864
Well, the best weather observers / forecasters here get their points across regardless of how wonderful their language / writing style is.

Goodnight.
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Quoting KoritheMan:


Seconded.


I would third it, but i'm trying to behave LOL
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 29864
Quoting SevereHurricane:


I think people who use caps are annoying...


Seconded.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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