Category 4 Hurricane Jimena Approaches Baja California

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 7:50 AM GMT on August 31, 2009

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Hi, this is Dr. Rob Carver filling in for Dr. Masters. Hurricane Jimena is the main story for the North American tropics with satellite-estimated winds of 145 mph. This makes Jimena a Category 4 storm on the Saffir-Simpson scale. However, later today, we will actually have measured winds for this storm. The Plan of the Day indicates that an Air Force reconnaissance mission to Jimena has been scheduled for the middle of the day Aug. 31. Hurricane watches have been posted for the southern Baja peninsula.

Jimena continues to have an impressive presentation on satellite with a compact core and cold cloud tops. Late in the afternoon, the TRMM satellite flew directly over Jimena, and part of the central core was in the field of view of TRMM's radar.


Fig. 1 TRMM overpass at 2355Z Aug 30 showing surface rain fall rates derived from microwave radiometry and Doppler radar. Image courtesy of NRL

This shows that Jimena has a a very tight eyewall, consistent with its intensity, with a possible eyewall replacement cycle starting soon. If the cycle starts, Jimena will likely weaken some, but this is still a dangerous storm. The AF reconnaissance mission will provide NHC's forecasts a good deal of information about the storm and improve the computer forecasts (There really isn't much in the way of measurements out there.) It is also important to note that as Jimena moves northward, it will move over cooler water, which is not favorable for maintaining its intensity.

The current track forecast calls for Jimena to make landfall on the western coast of Baja southwest of La Paz. Given the angle between Jimena's track and Baja's coastline, there is a wide spread of possible landfall locations. People living in this area need to be making hurricane preparations now.

Invest 94L Invest 94L is still out there, moving westwards to the Lower Antilles. People in the Lesser Antilles still need to keep an eye on this storm, as tropical storm formation is possible with this storm. This is still considerable uncertainty on the track of this feature as different models have different initializations of the storm. However, the Plan of the Day indicates that reconnaissance missions into Invest 94L could start as soon as Tuesday, September 1, which would give everybody more data to understand what's going on.

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695. juniort
9:17 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Africa has fired up again...does anyone know where the low level COC really is in 94L?
Member Since: July 19, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 69
694. canesrule1
7:35 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting cchsweatherman:
At this time, interests in the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, and the SE Bahamas should be monitoring this situation as it develops since it appears likely that they will see some impacts. What those impacts will be are not known at this time.
And Florida.
693. CaneHunter031472
3:57 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
It looks like the Odds of 94L to make it into the GOMEX are pretty high. Also there is another system in front of it north of Puerto Rico which is forming out of a ULL it seems to also be heading into that direction. I guess I am not going to be heading out to sea in the next few weeks after all. Anyone else have a take on this? Is this observation somewhat accurate or am I a good candidate to eat the crow? I like it fried please....
Member Since: August 1, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 182
692. WxLogic
3:49 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Good afternoish...
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4977
690. FloridaTigers
3:42 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
I thought the anticyclone over 94L weakened?
Member Since: May 17, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 559
689. mikatnight
3:41 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
NEW BLOG
Member Since: October 18, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
688. StormHunter89
3:41 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting tanman63:
I think NHC should atleast stop calling it an invest. It's TD 6, no questions about it. Thunderstorm activity has really picked up in the past 6 hours as it made a jump to the north recently. Looking at mean layer flow, it looks that it will shoot north of Puerto Rico then take a more westerly route, if the B-A High shifts a little farther west. Looking back at past model data though, NOGAPS has been the best thusfar. I expect decent pressure drops today and a continued consolidation of convection. The anticyclone over it should protect it from crazy shear, but I think it will encounter 20kt shear tomorrow which will frazzle it, but not kill it. I think NHC should step up their flight time to 12z tomorrow...thoughts?


Couldn't agree more.
Member Since: August 26, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 30
687. tanman63
3:39 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
I think NHC should atleast stop calling it an invest. It's TD 6, no questions about it. Thunderstorm activity has really picked up in the past 6 hours as it made a jump to the north recently. Looking at mean layer flow, it looks that it will shoot north of Puerto Rico then take a more westerly route, if the B-A High shifts a little farther west. Looking back at past model data though, NOGAPS has been the best thusfar. I expect decent pressure drops today and a continued consolidation of convection. The anticyclone over it should protect it from crazy shear, but I think it will encounter 20kt shear tomorrow which will frazzle it, but not kill it. I think NHC should step up their flight time to 12z tomorrow...thoughts?
686. iluvjess
3:38 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Looks like the deep area of convection is finally trying to wrap..
685. Patrap
3:37 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
94L has only One CoC as seen on the Multiplatform Satellite Surface Wind Analysis

94L Multiplatform Satellite Surface Wind Analysis,Wind Field 1200 UTC
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128661
684. Patrap
3:35 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Jimena Wind Field from 1200 UTC
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128661
683. mikatnight
3:34 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting Grothar:


Mike, what did he mean "Storm specific" I hope he means they shall back-off with a big my bad for that CAT 4 scenario. It looks waaaay over-done at this time.


I took it to mean that 94L hadn't developed enough for the model to have reliable predictability.
Member Since: October 18, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
682. nrtiwlnvragn
3:33 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting P451:
Alright, speculate away what this means in term of a COC.



Competing surface circulations. I would expect the one under the heavy convection to win out eventually.
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 11215
681. Seastep
3:32 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting P451:
Alright, speculate away what this means in term of a COC.



As I mentioned earlier, and now supported by ASCAT per Adrian, center just passed over that buoy w/S winds in the past hour or so. If you look, winds went down to zero in the prior increment.

Will be interesting to see what the surface winds are E of the llc.
Member Since: September 9, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 3414
680. bluehaze27
3:32 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
It looks like something might be trying to form in that cluster of storms in the Southern Bahamas, ahead of what may be erika
Member Since: March 26, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 813
679. groundswell
3:29 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Fair waves from Danny, Saturday at Ponce was fun, good conditions. 94L could be our next wavemaker, just in time for the weekend (again). But I don't see how it will survive the shear in front of it, unless the shear moves west ahead of it, or weakens. Water temp up here finally over 80 degrees....
Member Since: August 28, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 381
678. mobilegirl81
3:29 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
NOAA weather says that the trough will weaken or go diffuse and ridge will move in over eastern GOM.
Member Since: August 31, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 833
677. Seflhurricane
3:29 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
thanks
Member Since: July 14, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 3022
675. hurricane23
3:28 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting Seflhurricane:
looks like A tropical depression is forming look at the IR images in loop towards the end convection is starting to wrap around the Center


Do not use conventional IR imagery when searching for a surface circulation.Looks can be deceiving.
Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13804
674. southfla
3:28 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Well NHC expects 94l to be TS within 36 hours or so if the wording in their recon flight plans is any indication. First flight scheduled for tomorrow at 18z (2pm edt).

900 AM EDT MON 31 AUGUST 2009
SUBJECT: TROPICAL CYCLONE PLAN OF THE DAY (TCPOD)
VALID 01/1100Z TO 02/1100Z SEPTEMBER 2009
TCPOD NUMBER.....09-095

I. ATLANTIC REQUIREMENTS
1. SUSPECT AREA (APPROACHING THE LESSER ANTILLES)
FLIGHT ONE - TEAL 75
A. 01/1800Z
B. AFXXX 01BBA INVEST
C. 01/1600Z
D. 17.5N 56.5W
E. 01/1730Z TO 01/2200Z
F. SFC TO 10,000 FT

FLIGHT TWO - TEAL 76
A. 02/0600Z, 1200Z
B. AFXXX 0206A CYCLONE
C. 02/0400Z
D. 18.0N 58.0W
E. 02/0530Z TO 02/1200Z
F. SFC TO 10,000 FT
Member Since: May 19, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 252
673. hurricanejunky
3:27 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
I know Jimena looks large and all but...

HURRICANE FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 30 MILES...45 KM...FROM
THE CENTER...AND TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 80
MILES...130 KM.


That seems like an awfully small wind field...doesn't it?
Member Since: August 28, 2006 Posts: 6 Comments: 2899
672. mobilegirl81
3:27 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Could take a track similar to Georges, except missing the islands; watch out florida keys.
Member Since: August 31, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 833
671. midgulfmom
3:27 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting hurricanehanna:
Good morning all.
Tomorrow is the 1 year anniversary of Gustav. I'm still debating whethere to rebuild one of the fences we lost. May wait until Nov. 30.
Boy, blog is slow and moving fast. Hi Hanna, I'd wait on the fence. I remember a guy on the radio in Chalmette (during Cindy before Katrina) who called in to say at 2 am that he was holding his new fence up with a rope 'cause he just put it up. That image in my mind was kinda funny but little did we all know he'd have much more trouble later. BBL
Member Since: July 9, 2005 Posts: 2 Comments: 1163
670. Grothar
3:27 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting mikatnight:
#660 – thank you sir, you’re a gentleman and a scholar…


Mike, what did he mean "Storm specific" I hope he means they shall back-off with a big my bad for that CAT 4 scenario. It looks waaaay over-done at this time.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26486
669. Patrap
3:26 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
94L.
ComeWeds evening,we should have a good bead on its future.

Any well defined Invest TD down in the Alley needs to be treated with respect this time of year.

Once we get some G-4 Data and a Few Penetrations,..a lot more will become clear on track and intensity.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128661
668. Seflhurricane
3:26 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
looks like A tropical depression is forming look at the IR images in loop towards the end convection is starting to wrap around the Center
Member Since: July 14, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 3022
667. hurricane23
3:25 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting TheCaneWhisperer:
#650

HWRF is storm specific and it's output will improve once 94L becomes better organized.


If the ECM is right its window might be closeing rather quickly as south westerly shear could begin to impact the system soon.LLC is way west of the main convective mass upon latest ASCAT which came in just a few minutes ago.
Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13804
665. mikatnight
3:22 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
#660 – thank you sir, you’re a gentleman and a scholar…
Member Since: October 18, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
664. mobilegirl81
3:22 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting rwdobson:
94L looks a lot better than "Danny" did during most of it's lifetime...

Judging the time of year, sst, and the projection to go or skim north of the islands, we could be looking at our next major hurricane in the making.
Member Since: August 31, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 833
663. TheCaneWhisperer
3:22 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
One absence of note is the GFDL
661. WINDSMURF
3:21 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
My humble opinion is that this storm will travel just north of puerto rico and once in the warm waters, it will intensify to a category 2 hurricane making landfall somewhere in the southeast coast. I really do not see anything there that will make it go North. I think that we have a better chance of a Gulf of mexico path than a fish storm
Member Since: August 10, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 167
660. TheCaneWhisperer
3:20 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
#650

HWRF is storm specific and it's output will improve once 94L becomes better organized.
658. rwdobson
3:19 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
94L looks a lot better than "Danny" did during most of it's lifetime...
Member Since: June 12, 2002 Posts: 0 Comments: 1589
657. Grothar
3:19 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting Patrap:


Hey Patrap. Happen to catch the HWRF forecast. You think they are really over-doing it by bringing it to CAT 4? The other models seem pretty consistent on your graphic.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26486
656. mikatnight
3:19 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
#652 that's one long post; my scroling finger got tired...
Member Since: October 18, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
655. StormHunter89
3:19 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
looks like a tropical storm to me. great symmetry outflow and its starting to get the spiral rain bands.
Member Since: August 26, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 30
654. hurricanejunky
3:18 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting cchsweatherman:
Just wanted to take this time and wish anyone who may reside or live on Baja California the best luck and hope that they have made all the necessary preparations for what seems like it will be a powerful storm in about 24 hours time. I must say that Hurricane Jimena is one of the most impressive storms I have ever seen in my lifetime just due to the shear expanse of atmosphere its affecting. Not many realize this, but those storms that popped in Southeastern Texas last night were due to the outflow from Hurricane Jimena. This is definitely not a good situation, but I know that they have high building standards in Cabo San Lucas and the surrounding areas, so hopefully the damage will be minimal. I will keep an eye on the storm.


In addition, let's all wish CycloneOZ a safe trip and return. Go Oz!!
Member Since: August 28, 2006 Posts: 6 Comments: 2899
653. alaina1085
3:17 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting Patrap:


Pat whats your take on this storm?
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 1240
652. canehater1
3:16 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
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Area Forecast Discussion
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Current Version | Previous Version | Text Only | Print | Product List | Glossary Off
Versions: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


000
FXUS64 KLIX 311301
AFDLIX

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE NEW ORLEANS LA
801 AM CDT MON AUG 31 2009

.UPDATE...
...SOUNDING DISCUSSION...

NO PROBLEMS WITH THE FLIGHT THIS MORNING. THE FRONT HAS PASSED
THROUGH THE AREA AND THE WINDS HAVE SHIFTED AROUND TO THE NORTH AT
THE SURFACE ALTHOUGH THEY ARE LIGHT THIS MORNING. THE NORTH WINDS
HOWEVER ARE NOT VERY DEEP INTO THE COLUMN AS THEY SHIFT BACK TO
THE WEST AT AROUND 2500 FEET. IT IS STILL FAIRLY MOIST FROM THE
SURFACE TO AROUND THAT POINT WHERE A CLOUD DECK HAD FORMED EARLIER
AND MOVED OUT. ABOVE THAT...THE SOUNDING DRIES OUT CONSIDERABLY
ESPECIALLY ABOVE 600 MB. PW VALUE HAS COME DOWN FROM 2.25 INCHES
YESTERDAY MORNING TO 1.75 INCHES THIS MORNING. OBVIOUSLY NEAR THE
COAST WHERE THE FRONT IS STILL LINGERING...THE SOUNDING WOULD LOOK
CONSIDERABLY DIFFERENT AS SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS ARE SITUATED
JUST OFF THE COAST.

98/SO

&&

.PREV DISCUSSION... /ISSUED 431 AM CDT MON AUG 31 2009/

SHORT TERM...
FRONT HAS SLOWED IT PROGRESS INTO THE GULF THIS MORNING. BUT IT IS
STILL MOVING AND SHOULD REMAIN OFFSHORE FOR THE NEXT SEVERAL DAYS.
UPPER MARITIME RIDGING SEEN FROM THE EAST PAC ALL THE WAY INTO THE
NE GULF. THIS IS ALLOWING A NICE COLUMN OF WEAK LIFT ALONG THE OLD
FRONTAL AXIS. THE TROPICAL RECIPE WILL BE THERE FOR THE NEXT
SEVERAL DAYS SO THE OLD BOUNDARY WILL NEED TO BE WATCHED. THE MOST
INTERESTING FEATURE ON THE MAP THIS MORNING IS THE TROPICAL SYSTEM
NEARING THE NE CARIBBEAN ISLANDS. MOST GLOBAL SOLUTIONS WEAKEN THE
SYSTEM BACK INTO AN OPEN WAVE BEFORE BRINGING IT INTO THE GULF
OVER THE WEEKEND.

AVIATION...
PATCHY LIFR CIGS AND MVFR VSBYS DEVELOPING OVER SOUTHWEST MS MAY
IMPACT THE KMCB AREA EARLY THIS MORNING. ALSO...MVFR CIGS NEAR KNBG
COULD BRIEFLY IMPACT KMSY THE NEXT COUPLE HOURS...OTHERWISE DRIER
AIR BEHIND THE COLD FRONT SHOULD DEEPEN AND MIX OUT THE LOW LEVEL
MOISTURE AND CLOUDS BY MID MORNING. VFR CONDITIONS WILL PREVAIL FROM
MID MORNING THROUGH TONIGHT INTO TUESDAY. 22/TD

MARINE...
COLD FRONT IN THE COASTAL WATERS FROM NEAR BRETON SOUND TO NEAR
ATCHAFALAYA BAY WILL ONLY DRIFT SOUTH AS A WEAK WAVE DEVELOPS AND
MOVES ALONG THE BOUNDARY. THIS WILL KEEP CONVECTION IN THE FORECAST
FOR THE COASTAL WATERS THROUGH TUESDAY NIGHT. THE FRONT IS EXPECTED
TO PUSH FARTHER SOUTH INTO THE NORTH GULF WITH MODERATE OFFSHORE
FLOW DEVELOPING IN ITS WAKE THROUGH THE MIDDLE OF THE WEEK. 22/TD

&&

.PRELIMINARY POINT TEMPS/POPS...
MCB 87 63 88 61 / 10 0 0 0
BTR 88 66 89 63 / 10 0 0 10
MSY 88 72 88 71 / 20 10 10 10
GPT 87 66 88 64 / 20 10 10 20

&&

.LIX WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
LA...NONE.
GM...NONE.
MS...NONE.
GM...NONE.
&&

$$








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Member Since: September 8, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 1078
651. stormsurge39
3:16 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
94L looks like its going straight to tropical storm Erika!!!!
650. mikatnight
3:16 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting Patrap:


#644 - wonder why the HWRF is so out of line with the others (cat 4 in 5 days)?
Member Since: October 18, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
649. Patrap
3:15 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
94L Multiplatform Satellite Surface Wind Analysis,Wind Field 1200 UTC
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128661
648. Seastep
3:15 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Based on windshift and speeds, coc just passed this buoy:

Link
Member Since: September 9, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 3414
647. mobilegirl81
3:15 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
When we get a depression, we will know where its going. Intensity is the big question.
Member Since: August 31, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 833
646. palmasdelrio
3:14 PM GMT on August 31, 2009
Quoting Seastep:


The wave is moving W. Low is moving WNW to NW.

thanks. Since I don't know too much about weather, I really appreciate all the information that's being posted.
Member Since: May 22, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 181

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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.