Alex Slowly Gains Strength

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 6:35 AM GMT on June 29, 2010

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Hello, it's Dr. Rob Carver substituting for Jeff on the late shift.

As of the 0100 EDT advisory, Alex is 475 miles SE of Brownsville TX moving NNW at 8 mph. The advisory wind speed is 65 mph with a minimum central pressure of 985 mb. The most recent vortex fix was at 1225EDT with an unchanged pressure reading. Alex is expected to take a turn to the NW and make landfall just south of Brownsville late Wednesday night/early Thursday morning. The government of Mexico has issued a hurricane warning from the mouth of the Rio Grande south to La Cruz. NHC has hoisted the hurricane warning flag from the Rio Grande north to Baffin Bay. A tropical storm warning extends from Baffin Bay to Port O'Connor. Alex is expected to expand in size so it will be much larger than Hurricane Dolly, which was the last storm to affect the region in 2008.

Hurricane Local Statements are now being issued by the Brownsville and Corpus Christi NWS offices. These statements provide a detailed look at how Alex will affect the region and summarize how local emergency management is responding to the situation.

Alex has three different ways to negatively impact the Rio Grande Valley: storm surge, heavy rains, and strong winds.

Risk of Storm Surge
NHC is forecasting a storm surge of 3-5 feet along the coast north of where Alex makes landfall. The exact details of the surge's extent depend on where Alex makes landfall and how big it gets while it is over the open water. I've include a plot of the statistical storm surge forecast product. Unless Alex refuses to make it's left turn, I don't think there's a chance of storm surge north of Port O'Connor.

Plot of experimental storm surge forecast.

Threat from Rain
NHC thinks 5 to 10 inches of rain over southern Texas/northern Mexico is possible when Alex makes landfall. This is why the Brownsville office thinks the primary threat from Alex will be inland flooding in areas with poor drainage.

Alex has a history of producing torrential amounts of rain as shown by this estimate of rainfall during Alex's passage over the Yucatan Peninsula.

Satellite-derived rainfall estimates for June 27, 2010 using data from the Climate Prediction Center.

Threat from Wind
Alex is currently forecast to reach hurricane status. There will likely be hurricane force winds along the coast where Alex makes landfall. The current hurricane wind probabilities show that Brownsville has a 77% chance of experiencing tropical storm force winds and a 18% chance of experiencing hurricane force winds. Corpus Christi has a 44 % chance of tropical storm winds and a 4% chance of hurricane force winds. There is also the possibility of tornadoes forming in outer rainbands as Alex makes landfall.

The Curious Incident of the Hurricane Dynamical Models
One thing that strikes me as odd about Alex is that neither the GFDL nor the HWRF have been intensifying the storm into a hurricane in the past few model runs. This is intriguing because Alex is already a strong tropical storm. It will bear watching to see if GFDL/HWRF continue this pattern for future storms.

Next Update
Jeff will post an entry sometime this morning, and I'll have another entry late Tuesday night.

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712. louisianaweatherguy
3:24 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
we are definately looking at Hurricane Alex now!!! thank God he started moving NW again!!!!
Member Since: July 9, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 692
711. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
3:03 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 176 Comments: 55625
710. WatchingThisOne
2:52 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting extreme236:


Alex still has 36-48 hours until landfall. I'd find it hard to believe that it's just gonna sit there at 60-65kts that whole time under mostly favorable conditions. Especially since it's developing an eye.


Yes, and it's just now starting to get into some serious OHC. That's why it's firing convection so dramatically, IMHO. Pressures should continue to fall, and things should start consolidating and tightening around the eye.
Member Since: July 15, 2005 Posts: 3 Comments: 1270
709. WatchingThisOne
2:47 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting StormSurgeon:


Am I the only one that finds this vaguely familiar?


Nope.
Member Since: July 15, 2005 Posts: 3 Comments: 1270
708. AustinTXWeather
2:44 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Appreciate the related comment/question blueyedhrlyridr and herci!
Member Since: September 13, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 241
707. cg2916
2:28 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
NEW BLOG!!!!!!!!!
Member Since: December 21, 2007 Posts: 13 Comments: 3046
706. BahaHurican
2:27 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting BahaHurican:
New Blog!!!

NEW BLOG!
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22682
705. blueyedhrlyridr
2:27 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Rain chances go up to 70% for Galveston/Houston on Thursday. Wont feel any substantial winds from the storm bieng so far south. So just some good beneficial rain weve been needing
Member Since: July 15, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 76
704. nrtiwlnvragn
2:26 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Looks like no NOAA research on Alex for the next few days:


Mission Summary :

The P-3 was tasked by EMC to carry out a TDR mission into Tropical Storm Alex in the Bay of Campeche. The aircraft departed MacDill AFB, FL at 21:10 UTC. Engine problems forced a premature end to the mission and the aircraft returned to MacDill by 02:24 UTC the next day.

Problems :

Engine #1 had to be shut down during this mission. Experiment was cut short and NOAA 42 returned to MacDill AFB, FL. Aircraft will be out for maintenance for several days.
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 11305
702. TampaSpin
2:24 PM GMT on June 29, 2010


Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20448
701. illinichaser
2:24 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting illinichaser:


Good point stormchaser81, versus yesterday I'd have to say the enviroment has looked much more moist today than it did yesterday. I remembered the entire TX coastline had dark oranges paralleling it, but it seems to Whats your take on that? Is the dry air stay forcasted to stay up with this system up through landfall or is the system cleansing itself of it? Appreciate the insight!

my apoligizes I copied and pasted parts of that and not all of it come over. lol
700. bassis
2:24 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Thank you for the update Storm. Will you be on Hurricane Hollow today?
Member Since: September 8, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 423
698. Orcasystems
2:23 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting apocalyps:
Alex Almost due north now


Due North of what? It sure isn't going North?



AOI
Quoting rarepearldesign:


Chris Brothers sold out. You can still get it, but most of it is not the real Chris Brothers. They sold the rights to the Superstore (grocery chain) to make it in-store and it doesn't taste the same.


OMG.. just shoot me :(
Member Since: October 1, 2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26512
697. hercj
2:23 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Hey Pat, even if the center of this system comes in down round Brownsville, now correct me if I'm wrong, but even up in Houston they are going to take some pretty heavy weather, are they not?
Member Since: September 5, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 319
696. HurricaneSwirl
2:23 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting IKE:
Even the non-tropical NAM model that's had Alex everywhere from the western GOM to the northern GOM on runs, has put Alex inland in northern Mexico on the 12Z run in 36 hours...



IMO that's way too far south. Alex would have to go a tad south of west to reach that point. But the NAM is sort of in line with other models now.
Member Since: July 7, 2008 Posts: 2 Comments: 3237
695. hurricanehanna
2:23 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting StormW:
TROPICAL STORM ALEX SYNOPSIS JUNE 29, 2010 ISSUED 10:10 A.M.


Thanks for the update Storm!
Member Since: September 5, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3488
694. salttube
2:22 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting womanmarine:
StormW - I am in Corpus Christi, I have my boards out and ready to put up. I would also have to board up my father's house(only 2 very high windows). Before I try to break my neck, with the current track, is boarding up necessary for Corpus?
Have you looked to the South East of you? What do you think?
Member Since: June 29, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3
693. BahaHurican
2:22 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
New Blog!!!

NEW BLOG!
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22682
692. Patrap
2:22 PM GMT on June 29, 2010


Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129435
691. AustinTXWeather
2:22 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting MrNatural:


I believe that turn is beginning. Considering the size of the storm, you can be assured that the Galveston/Houston area will at least get a drenching.


Thanks - I'm trying to walk the line of giving good info but not being an alarmist > I still haven't gotten a good read on the impact to the Hou/Galveston area (if even notable) so feeling like I'm not providing much support just yet. Great handle > any relationship to the place on S Lamar?
Member Since: September 13, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 241
690. AstroHurricane001
2:22 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting primadonnagirl:
alex makes ike look like a baby.
I never seen a storm so large in my life, especially a a weak tropical storm.
shouldn't of ate darby poor guy.


Alex is only the first storm of the season. Don't be surprised to see some hurricanes in the open Atlantic that take up 40% of the NAtl basin (excluding the Mediterranean, Arctic region, Gulf of Guinea, Caribbean, and Gulf of Mexico).

Quoting AussieStorm:
Coldest morning in three years chills NSW

Much of New South Wales, including Sydney has been gripped by the coldest morning in three years, record cold in some places.

Most of the state was about five to 10 degrees colder than the June average.

The state's coldest place was Glen Innes on the Northern Tablelands where it dropped to minus 10 degrees.

The coldest spot across Sydney this morning was Richmond which recorded a temperature of minus 3.8 degrees, the coldest it's been in five years.

This sort of cold is not unusual for July or August but for June it's much more rare.

Sydney city got as cold as 4.7 degrees at about sunrise, the coldest in three years and the coldest June morning in 27 years.

In the northwest of the state Bourke and Walgett both chilled to minus four degrees and Lightning Ridge minus two, the coldest it's been in June in more than a decade.

Most of NSW will be similarly cold on Wednesday morning with further severe frost expected.

From Thursday, mornings will still be cold but become progressively warmer as the coldest air dissipates and cloud and wind increase.

The crisp clear weather will turn cloudy and rainy in the north late in the week as moisture filters in from the tropics.

© Weatherzone 2010


It's winter in the SHem, and Antarctic air is taking a vengance because all the ENSO warm water has moved east of the Philippines.

Quoting angiest:


Some outer bands are coming ashore in deep south Texas, but I haven't really seen anything identifiable as a feeder band elsewhere, and especially not so far north as Arkansas.


I see the thunderstorms in Arkansas, way ahead of the cold front as an extension of the feeder band that developed convection over the mountains of Mexico, north as low cloud into Texas and east over Arkansas through southern Georgia.
Member Since: August 30, 2008 Posts: 8 Comments: 2835
689. primadonnagirl
2:21 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
why so much hate for kids and younger people?

rather they be doing drugs then trying to predict the weather?

we were all young once.
688. rarepearldesign
2:21 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting Orcasystems:


Send me some Brothers TNT and your forgiven.


Chris Brothers sold out. You can still get it, but most of it is not the real Chris Brothers. They sold the rights to the Superstore (grocery chain) to make it in-store and it doesn't taste the same.
Member Since: August 17, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 145
687. jpsb
2:21 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting MrNatural:


I believe that turn is beginning. Considering the size of the storm, you can be assured that the Galveston/Houston area will at least get a drenching.
I have late season tomato plants ready to go in the ground. Today looks like a perfect day to plant, lots of rain coming. Just waiting for the west turn to start, then I'll plant. (Tomato plants do not like hurricane force winds)
Member Since: June 30, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 1262
686. illinichaser
2:21 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting StormChaser81:


I'll be very surprised to see it reach strong cat 2.

It's working on filling the dry slot in the north west quad.

A burst of convection doesnt mean its in a rapid strengthening phase, just means its feeding off the warm waters.




Good point stormchaser81, versus yesterday I'd have to say the enviroment has looked much more moist today than it did yesterday. I remembered the entire TX coastline had dark oranges paralleling it, but it seems to Whats your take on that? Is the dry air stay forcasted to stay up with this system up through landfall or is the system cleansing itself of it? Appreciate the insight!
684. IKE
2:21 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Even the non-tropical NAM model that's had Alex everywhere from the western GOM to the northern GOM on runs, has put Alex inland in northern Mexico on the 12Z run in 36 hours...

Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37860
683. extreme236
2:21 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Recon just did a vortex pass though the NW quadrant. 982mb on that pass.
Member Since: August 2, 2007 Posts: 19 Comments: 19234
682. Dropsonde
2:20 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting StormChaser81:


I'll be very surprised to see it reach strong cat 2.

It working on filling the dry slot in the north west quad.

A burst of convection doesnt mean its in a rapid strengthening phase, just means its feeding off the warm waters.


I know, the storm had this exact type of convection last night, so I'm not impressed this morning. I don't guess everyone would have been on at midnight CDT to see it... and people wanting to believe in a Cat 3 doesn't hurt anything, I suppose. Lord knows it'll happen often enough in the next four months.
Member Since: August 22, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 414
681. Waltanater
2:20 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Looks like a big chunk of thunderstorms is separating from Alex heading north! Anyone think this may be a factor with the Gulf Oil rig or develop separately?

They are already getting 20-25 mph there.
Member Since: May 16, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1472
680. primadonnagirl
2:20 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Alex is going south so I think bonnie will be alive in a few more days. I see her being the big one.
679. apocalyps
2:20 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Alex Almost due north now
Member Since: May 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 960
678. HurricaneSwirl
2:20 PM GMT on June 29, 2010

Quoting jpsb:
Alex ate Darby? Damn, I saw it was robbing Darby's convection the other day but I did not think it would eat the entire hurricane. Is that kinda unusual? Never heard of TS eating a hurricane before. That Alex is a mean one!


Yup. It completely devoured a category 3 hurricane. LOL

Typhoon Alex-1
EPAC-0
Member Since: July 7, 2008 Posts: 2 Comments: 3237
677. Patrap
2:19 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
GOM 60 Hour Wave Forecast (using WW3) WaveWatch 3
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129435
676. hercj
2:19 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting Patrap:


Wheels up ..

Morn'

In about 2 hours I'll be on my way back to TPA. Thank God, I hate this place and always have.
Member Since: September 5, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 319
675. apocalyps
2:19 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
winds 75MPH
Member Since: May 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 960
674. womanmarine
2:19 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
StormW - I am in Corpus Christi, I have my boards out and ready to put up. I would also have to board up my father's house(only 2 very high windows). Before I try to break my neck, with the current track, is boarding up necessary for Corpus?
Member Since: September 9, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 11
673. IKE
2:18 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting Patrap:




ALEX/Gulf Of Mexico - Rainbow Loop




.."Somewhere in the French Quarter..a Tourist sippin coffee and snacking on a Warm powdered Beignet,..just flipped off a Balcony onto Royal Street"..


Plopp..poof


LOL.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37860
672. extreme236
2:18 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
06z GFS continues to show an active itcz in a couple days.
Member Since: August 2, 2007 Posts: 19 Comments: 19234
671. HurricaneSwirl
2:18 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting AussieStorm:
Coldest morning in three years chills NSW

Much of New South Wales, including Sydney has been gripped by the coldest morning in three years, record cold in some places.

Most of the state was about five to 10 degrees colder than the June average.

The state's coldest place was Glen Innes on the Northern Tablelands where it dropped to minus 10 degrees.

The coldest spot across Sydney this morning was Richmond which recorded a temperature of minus 3.8 degrees, the coldest it's been in five years.

This sort of cold is not unusual for July or August but for June it's much more rare.

Sydney city got as cold as 4.7 degrees at about sunrise, the coldest in three years and the coldest June morning in 27 years.

In the northwest of the state Bourke and Walgett both chilled to minus four degrees and Lightning Ridge minus two, the coldest it's been in June in more than a decade.

Most of NSW will be similarly cold on Wednesday morning with further severe frost expected.

From Thursday, mornings will still be cold but become progressively warmer as the coldest air dissipates and cloud and wind increase.

The crisp clear weather will turn cloudy and rainy in the north late in the week as moisture filters in from the tropics.

© Weatherzone 2010


YIKES! How ya holding down there?
Member Since: July 7, 2008 Posts: 2 Comments: 3237
670. Patrap
2:18 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting hercj:

Ah good morning Pat.


Wheels up ..

Morn'
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129435
669. TampaSpin
2:18 PM GMT on June 29, 2010


Trough #2 coming into California now....Not much room for a much of a building High in between but, some!
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20448
667. LSU79
2:17 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting DestinJeff:
Weakness still evident in 1200 CIMSS layer mean analysis. Until that rockies high moves south and east, don't expect too much west motion from Alex.... especially since the atlantic ridge isn't exactly making much progress building west itself.


Destin, Post 623, I saw a similar map last night and if my memory serves correctly it looks af if the eastern ridge has backed off some. The Rockies ridge seems to have flattened out and the northern trough has dug deeper. That's just they way it appears to me.
Member Since: August 17, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 17
666. RuBRNded
2:17 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting StormSurgeon:
I apologize to you adjusters. Most of you are good, honest people. My gripes are the result of owning a house on the west end of Dauphin Island that was badly damaged by both Ivan and Katrina. Adjusters showed up and undervalued the damage at about 30K each time. I had to come out of pocket each time. I blame the Insurance companies, not you guys. But I swear, if either one of those adjusters showed up on my front porch, I'd hit em so hard they wouldn't need no rocket to fly through space.


If you feel you are being taken advantage of by your insurance, get a public adjuster to estimate damages and negotiate with your insurance, and go to mediation if you have to.
Member Since: July 29, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 350
665. Patrap
2:17 PM GMT on June 29, 2010




ALEX/Gulf Of Mexico - Rainbow Loop

Quoting IKE:
System is bending more west right now. Put your specks on and speed up the visible floater. Stand back 5-10 feet from the computer and look at it. You can see it aiming in on northern Mexico/Texas state line.



.."Somewhere in the French Quarter..a Tourist sippin coffee and snacking on a Warm powdered Beignet,..just flipped off a Balcony onto Royal Street"..


Plopp..poof
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129435
664. extreme236
2:17 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
00z ECMWF develops a Caribbean system at around 216-240 hours if anyone's interested...lol
Member Since: August 2, 2007 Posts: 19 Comments: 19234
663. angiest
2:17 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting AstroHurricane001:
Alex is simultaneously producing thunderstorms in Texas, Arkansas, Florida, Jamaica, Panama and Mexico. It's about eleven times the size of Texas including spiral bands.


Some outer bands are coming ashore in deep south Texas, but I haven't really seen anything identifiable as a feeder band elsewhere, and especially not so far north as Arkansas.
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 16 Comments: 4766
662. AstroHurricane001
2:17 PM GMT on June 29, 2010
Quoting jpsb:
What happened to Darby?


Alex ate it.

Quoting beell:


Nice one!


Well, that's what happened with Dolly and Allison.
Member Since: August 30, 2008 Posts: 8 Comments: 2835

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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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