Tropical Storm Alex's Yucatan Landfall

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 8:52 AM GMT on June 27, 2010

Share this Blog
0
+

Update: Here's the 500AM EDT radar image from Belize. Alex's eye is roughly 150 km NW of the radar.


This Animated loop shows the development of Alex's eye. The page for Belize's radar is here.

The 500AM EDT forecast is a bit different than the previous forecast. Essentially, it looks like the area of high pressure in the northern Gulf of Mexico will weaken due to a trough over the eastern US. This will weaken the steering currents and slow's Alex's motion over the Gulf of Mexico. The reduced storm motion will give Alex more time to intensify in a a warm SST/weak shear environment. The current forecast calls for Alex to become a category 2 storm before making landfall north of Tampico, MX late Wed. night/early Thursday morning.

The $64,000 question is "Will the ridge continue to weaken, allowing Alex to move north and continue intensification?" The 12Z global model runs will have more accurate forecasts than the the 6Z runs thanks to the presence of radiosonde data, so hopefully they'll provide an answer. It's still my opinion that Alex will not directly impact the oil spill recovery efforts, but I can't say that the chances of it doing so are getting smaller now.

This is Dr. Rob Carver, filling in for Jeff during the late shift. Tropical Storm Alex is currently moving over the Yucatan peninsula. Alex's intensity has dropped to 50 knots in the latest advisory with further weakening expected as the storm moves over land. After Alex moves into the Gulf of Mexico, intensification is expected because of warm sea-surface temperatures and weak vertical wind shear. An area of high pressure in the northern Gulf of Mexico will guide Alex into a WNW-NW track. The 200AM EDT forecast calls for Alex to intensify into a category 1 hurricane before making landfall just north of Tampico, MX.

In my judgement, the chances of Alex moving northwards and directly interfering with the Deepwater Horizon oil spill recovery efforts are small and getting smaller with time. I agree with Jeff's assessment that Alex will generate 2+ foot swells that would interfere with skimming operations

Currently, the main threat from Alex is flooding due to heavy rains. NHC is forecasting rainfall amounts from 4 to 8 inches with higher amounts over mountainous terrain, causing flooding and possibly mudslides.


Fig. 1Forecast of 24-hour accumulated precipitation from TS Alex.

Alex's Belizean Landfall
Jeff saved this radar image of Alex making landfall.

Fig. 2Base reflectivity at 2315Z 26 June 2010 at Philip Goldson Airport

There isn't much storm structure apparent in the reflectivity data, just widespread areas of showers. Data from a nearby PWS shows that the peak windspeed was 43 mph. You can clearly see the circulation move past the station with changes in the wind direction and speed. You can also see when the rainbands passed over the station.

Invest 94L
Invest 94L is still out there, but it's not looking healthy. It's currently in an area unfavorable for tropical cyclogenesis and NHC thinks it has a 0% chance of becoming a tropical storm in the next two days. Current forecast models have 94L moving northwards and making a pass by Bermuda.

If things don't change significantly, Jeff is thinking about taking Sunday off. However, rest assured that if Alex starts charging towards the US, Jeff or I will put up a new entry. In any event, I'm planning on posting an update sometime late Sunday evening.

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 102 - 52

Page: 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 | 28Blog Index

101. MahFL
"RATHER THAN BECOMING DISORGANIZED AFTER MOVING INLAND...RADAR AND
SATELLITE DATA INDICATE THAT ALEX HAS ACTUALLY BECOME MUCH BETTER
DEFINED"

Why is this ? Because Alex is a good storm, or is that part of the Yucatan low ground and maybe a bit swampy ?
Also whats with the more northerly track ?
I go to bed and its Mid Mexico, wake up and it's possibly LA ?...sheesh.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
100. IKE
Newer version of the GFS @ 132 hours...

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TampaSpin:
I'm gonna get some ZZZZZ's ! This blog is gonna explode today and no again no disrespect to anyone.....but, a major shift to the NORTH is needed but, i know NHC will do that shift in baby steps to get there for the obvious reasons.


Night
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I know it may not come here. And I know nobody needs a dam hurricane. But I wonder how many we're sposed to be able to take. This sucks! :( Gonna take a break. See y'all later.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I'm gonna get some ZZZZZ's ! This blog is gonna explode today and no again no disrespect to anyone.....but, a major shift to the NORTH is needed but, i know NHC will do that shift in baby steps to get there for the obvious reasons.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:


GFS 06Z 138 hours. Land in Galveston
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
GFS TX/LA again.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting DestinJeff:
Wow, everyone ... Alex's emergence from the Yucatan and the angle at which he comes off should tell the tale. Significant northerly component on Dvorak loop

what a storm!


Exactly Jeff.....it is following the GFS track to the mark.....just sayin
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Assuming the worst case, heading more northerly towards TX/LA... The Gulf temps look warm and the discussion talks of a potential Major; what danger is there of Rapid Intensification?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting SykKid:


Okay...we get the point dude you think it's heading for the Northern gulf. I disagree and think it will hit slightly to the south of the border as an 85 MPH cat1 storm. I expect the models to shift back to the south somewhat today. It's 7 am here...I think I need some sleep lol.


OK KID!!!!!!!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
78 zoomiami "TS: do you ever sleep?"

WUbermensches hibernate between hurricane seasons.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting ShenValleyFlyFish:


I think NHC may be somewhat confused at this point. In a normal year they could hedge their bets, give more general statement that until the storm moves offshore and indicates how rapidly it will intensify and the ridge/trough scenario plays out the indications are . . . Now they are under the gun to nail this thing further out than usual due to the mess in the GOM. If they call a Mexico strike and it proceeds to plow through the Oil and people and assets get busted up their name is Mud and if they call a Tex/La hit and it gos to MEX they will be covered in fecal matter and blamed for the lost capture and drill time. Talk about a no win scenario.


The last update is a bet hedger. Expect substantial advisory changes in the upcoming release from the NHC.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting scott39:
You Know, I look at that trough and think, yea that is definitely going to steer it more N. But in the back of my mind I keep thinking of what i heard yesterday, that the tail end of the front would weaken and high pressure will build in and kick Alex back W. Has that changed? Because the NHC is very confusing at thia moment!


I think NHC may be somewhat confused at this point. In a normal year they could hedge their bets, give more general statement that until the storm moves offshore and indicates how rapidly it will intensify and the ridge/trough scenario plays out the indications are . . . Now they are under the gun to nail this thing further out than usual due to the mess in the GOM. If they call a Mexico strike and it proceeds to plow through the Oil and people and assets get busted up their name is Mud and if they call a Tex/La hit and it gos to MEX they will be covered in fecal matter and blamed for the lost capture and drill time. Talk about a no win scenario.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TampaSpin:
CMC MODEL


GFDL MODEL


GFS MODEL


HWRF MODEL


NGP MODEL


If NHC would have just put a line down the middle of the average of these models.....it would be middle of Texas in my opinion....


Tampa, what time do the next run of models come out?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting SykKid:


Okay...we get the point dude you think it's heading for the Northern gulf. I disagree and think it will hit slightly to the south of the border as an 85 MPH cat1 storm. I expect the models to shift back to the south somewhat today. It's 7 am here...I think I need some sleep lol.


Lol. I know I should go now too.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Guess i should apologize to the NHC people as i don't mean to be so hard and disrespectful if i came across that way! Sorry!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
ALEX


3DAYS LATER


3DAYS AFTER THAT


I suggest Texans stay out of Europe. Lol.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
This up to date image shows that Alex is moving in a more northerly direction already.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
TS: do you ever sleep?

There are certainly changes coming -- those steering patterns are very interesting.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
CMC MODEL


GFDL MODEL


GFS MODEL


HWRF MODEL


NGP MODEL


If NHC would have just put a line down the middle of the average of these models.....it would be middle of Texas in my opinion....
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting SCwannabe:


If it becomes a major Hurricane?? Would it tend to track further north?


Probably.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Morning all,

Today Alex cross Yucatan.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting SCwannabe:


If it becomes a major Hurricane?? Would it tend to track further north?
I think if its a strong high, it doesnt.
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6728
Quoting scott39:
You Know, I look at that trough and think, yea that is definitely going to steer it more N. But in the back of my mind I keep thinking of what i heard yesterday, that the tail end of the front would weaken and high pressure will build in and kick Alex back W. Has that changed? Because the NHC is very confusing at thia moment!


If it becomes a major Hurricane?? Would it tend to track further north?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
winds here in isla mujeres around 30-40mph...only scattered bands of moderate rain and stronger gusts. But the ocean is fat and waves are very large.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
You Know, I look at that trough and think, yea that is definitely going to steer it more N. But in the back of my mind I keep thinking of what i heard yesterday, that the tail end of the front would weaken and high pressure will build in and kick Alex back W. Has that changed? Because the NHC is very confusing at thia moment!
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6728
Convection is impressive what a difference a hour can make not what I expected over land..


Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting SCwannabe:


No, your right on target...as is the NHC!


...I hope you're right.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
BIG DIFFERENCE HERE IN STEERING! Look at the first grahic below it of a Tropical Storm from 45-60kts. The second is for a Major Hurricane from 122kts or larger.....big difference in Steering as even Florida is in play on the later!


Steering Layer 500-850mb or
990-999mb pressure 45-60kts storms





Steering Layer 200-700mb or
940mb pressure 122kts and larger storms



Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting scott39:


No, your right on target...as is the NHC!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting SykKid:


Am I the only one who still thinks this one will pass south of the border? I still see this thing hitting Mexico...lol
Your mass is dwindling!LOL
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6728
Quoting SykKid:


Am I the only one who still thinks this one will pass south of the border? I still see this thing hitting Mexico...lol
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6728
This will be a TX storm... major flooding coming for Texas.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
It's 430! Come on Lake Charles!!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
ALEX UPDATE
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Tampa how long will that trough effect the steering of Alex?
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6728
Quoting TampaSpin:


So NHC Is going to ignore this very reliable model that has done very well for years......ONE THAT DR. MASTERS USES also as one on his blog. ROLLING EYES BIG TIME!


OH LOVELY. :(
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting hurricaneoz:
The 4am advisory is very puzzling on a couple of fronts. Firstly it speaks of Alex looking more like a hurricane than a TS with improved structure and so on and then does not increase its intensity, rather downgrades it to a 35kt storm.
Secondly, it finally speaks of not only the possibility but almost the probability of a MUCH more northern track.

Its just as well it is 4am or this blog would be going into panic!


1. It's probably because Alex isn't over water. Hence, any hurricane force winds are located aloft -- the lack of oceanic energy over the center is failing to bring those winds down to the surface. That, and the rugged terrain of this area is altering the wind flow somewhat, I would think.

2. It depends on the evolution of the upper trough. Water vapor imagery already depicts weak southwesterly flow across the northwestern Gulf.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:


So NHC Is going to ignore this very reliable model that has done very well for years......ONE THAT DR. MASTERS USES also as one on his blog. ROLLING EYES BIG TIME!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting hurricaneoz:
The 4am advisory is very puzzling on a couple of fronts. Firstly it speaks of Alex looking more like a hurricane than a TS with improved structure and so on and then does not increase its intensity, rather downgrades it to a 35kt storm.
Secondly, it finally speaks of not only the possibility but almost the probability of a MUCH more northern track.

Its just as well it is 4am or this blog would be going into panic!


They've been confusing me all night. Well at least it looks like they looked at the satellite this time. :)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TampaSpin:
NHC needs to really look at this loop that i have been playing all nite and Change the dang forecast track.....I really don't understand why they are disregarding models that have performed very well in the past......YA HERE COMES A GEEEEESSSSHHHHH!

NHC LOOK AT THE FREAKING TROUGH AND HOW DEEP AND FAR SOUTH IT ALREADY IS! MAJOR HURRICANE COMING TO THE NORTHERN GULF COAST! SORRY ALL! And i don't mean to be harsh to the NHC folks that work really hard but, I think you have really blew this forecast track!

Hmm, they had to see this--I wonder-- nah
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6728
Quoting Levi32:
Yeah....almost 1:30am here so I should go too. Night all. We shall see what tomorrow brings.


Night Levi. :)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Yeah....almost 1:30am here so I should go too. Night all. We shall see what tomorrow brings.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26543
NHC needs to really look at this loop that i have been playing all nite and Change the dang forecast track.....I really don't understand why they are disregarding models that have performed very well in the past......YA HERE COMES A GEEEEESSSSHHHHH!

NHC LOOK AT THE FREAKING TROUGH AND HOW DEEP AND FAR SOUTH IT ALREADY IS! MAJOR HURRICANE COMING TO THE NORTHERN GULF COAST! SORRY ALL! And i don't mean to be harsh to the NHC folks that work really hard but, I think you have really blew this forecast track!

Member Since: Posts: Comments:

Viewing: 102 - 52

Page: 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 | 28Blog Index

Top of Page

About

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