Little change to 94L; exceptional heat in Texas, record rains in California

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:43 PM GMT on June 06, 2011

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There is not much change to report on the large, wet, and disorganized tropical disturbance (Invest 94L) in the Western Caribbean, between Jamaica and Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. The disturbance has brought intermittent heavy rains to Jamaica over the past two days, but nearby islands have thus far escaped the deluge. Satellite-estimated rainfall amounts of 1" per hour occurred in ocean regions just east of Jamaica this morning, but the heaviest rains have missed the island so far this morning. Visible satellite loops show no increase in organization of 94L in recent hours, and the storm's low-level spiral bands and upper-level outflow are poorly defined. The storm's center of low pressure is located about 130 miles south of Grand Cayman Island, in a region with no heavy thunderstorm activity. An intense clump of thunderstorms exists on either side of this low, near Jamaica, and just east of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. Water vapor satellite loops show the Caribbean has moistened over the past two days, and upper air balloon soundings from the Cayman Islands continue to show much moister air at mid levels of the atmosphere (2% humidity at 500 mb on Saturday, compared to 69% last night.) Wind shear remains in the moderate range, 15 - 20 knots, and is predicted by the SHIPS model to remain below 20 knots through tonight. Water temperatures in the Central Caribbean are about 1°C above average, 28 - 28.5°C, which is 2°C above the threshold needed to support development of a tropical storm.


Figure 1. Rainfall rates of up to 1" per hour (orange colors) were estimated by the F-17 satellite for 94L at 7:03am EDT Jun 6, 2011. Image credit: Navy Research Lab, Monterey.

Since 94L is so large and poorly organized, today's mission by the Hurricane Hunters has been cancelled. A new mission is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon at 2pm EDT. This morning's 00Z and 06Z model runs were unimpressed with 94L, with most of them showing little or no development. A band of very high wind shear of 30 - 50 knots lies over Cuba and the southern Bahama Islands. The GFS and ECMWF models show 94L pushing slowly northwest at about 5 mph, hitting this shear on Tuesday and Wednesday, preventing any further development. The NOGAPS model predicts that a gap may open up in the shear sufficient for the storm to organize into a tropical depression late this week. Given 94L's current disorganization, I doubt the storm will ever develop. NHC gave 94L a 40% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Wednesday, and I believe these odds should be lower, near 20%. Regardless of development, 94L is capable of bringing very heavy rains to Jamaica, Cuba, the Cayman Islands, and Haiti through Wednesday. These rains will probably spread northwards into South Florida and the Bahama Islands by Thursday or Friday.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of 94L.

Exceptional heat in the South
A sizzling June heat wave set record high temperatures across much of Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, and the Florida Panhandle on Sunday. The high temperature at the Houston, Texas airport hit 105 degrees, the warmest temperature ever recorded in the month of June (old record: 104 degrees on June 24th and June 26th, 2009.) The earliest Houston ever recorded a temperature of 105 degrees prior to Sunday was July 26th, 1954. Records for Houston date back to 1891. There have been only 15 days in which the temperature has reached or exceeded 105 degrees in Houston:

4 - 1909
1 - 1954
2 - 1962
3 - 1980
5 - 2000

So far this month, new maximum temperature records in Houston have been established on four out of the first five days. Galveston and Houston both crushed their previous record high temperature for the day (June 5th) by a remarkable seven degrees. Residents can expect another day of triple-digit heat today, thanks to the upper level ridge of high pressure parked over the state. Houston will likely break the old record of 98°F for the date.


Figure 3. An intense low pressure system moves inland over California as seen in this satellite photo taken June 4, 2011, at 2pm PDT. Image credit: NASA/GSFC.

Record rains in California
A large and unusually intense low pressure system moved inland over California over the weekend, bringing large areas of the state rains unheard of in June. According to our weather historian, Christopher C. Burt, rainfall at Mining Ridge on the Big Sur coast totaled 8.31" Sunday, which, if verified, would be California's heaviest 1-day June rainstorm on record. According to the document "Historic Rainstorms in California" Dept. of Water Resources, Aug. 1997, the previous maximum June daily rainfall was 5.83" at Forni Ridge on June 18, 1982. San Francisco had its 2nd greatest June 1-day rainfall, going back to 1850, and both the San Francisco and Oakland airport have now had their rainiest Junes on record. Rainfall at Santa Barbara Airport yesterday totaled 1.24 inches, the wettest June day there on record (previous record: 0.51" on June 5, 2009.) The 1.38"of rain so far this June has made it the wettest June in recorded history at Santa Barbara Airport, going back to 1941.

Jeff Masters

Sunny California? (turnuptheheat)
Normally June should be warm and dry. Many areas have had more rainfall in one day than they usually get in the entire month of June. All due to this system: http://www.wunderground.com/data/images/GOES_CA_STORM.jpg
Sunny California?

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1732. pottery
Good Morning all.
Hot and bright one here.

Great new avatar, Snake.
Member Since: October 24, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 23080
1731. hydrus
The next wave moving into the Caribbean should be interesting...
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Quoting DestinJeff:


looks like a vigorous wave over Africa that we will have to watch in 3.5 weeks for possible pre-invest designation.


you can go ahead and designate it as a Possible Origination of a Potential Future Pre-Invest (POPFPI).

Time for a poll: What are the chances this POPFPI develops in the next 3-4 weeks?

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1729. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting DestinJeff:


looks like a vigorous wave over Africa that we will have to watch in 3.5 weeks for possible pre-invest designation.
maybe you should get in a row boat and row out to meet the enity and no blinking until you get there ok maybe you can blink once
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94L is a disorganized mess that is likely to never develop. It put up kind of a good fight I guess, but Wind Shear is just too strong right now to allow for something monsoonal in nature to form. I'm pretty sure had it spun up several days from now, it'd be a different story.

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1725. Grothar
Quoting IKE:

Probably get .02 inches of rain if that happened.

I wave the white flag on 94L. Yeah...call me a downcaster. LOL. Increasing shear....dry air...no low-level convergence....no upper-level divergence. Now watch it prove me wrong...again.....




IKE, this doesn't sound like you to give up so easily. LOL
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23687
Quoting stormwatcherCI:
The last co-ordinates are 18.1N and 81.7W and if I am seeing correctly that is exactly where the convection is forming.


That is correct and this is closest convection has been to the center or nearly over it yet looking at the satelite loops, now that it is smaller and more compact wouldn't surprise me to see 94L blossom once again
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1722. hydrus
2.5 month outlook...
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Good Morning. 94L never "seperated" from the wind sheer and pull caused by the huge mid-Atlantic ULL and the sheer across her North flank as a result of the position of the sub-tropical jet although she came close to seperating a few times due to the small anti-cyclone. As you can see on the loops, everything in the Caribbean is still being cleared out into the mid-Atlantic and the huge TUTT cell over the Gulf is keeping things clear there as well. Sheer remains low in the Caribbean for the moment but everthing north of there is very hostile. As I mentioned yesterday, if the E-Pac season takes off with this pending first storm, and the MJO slowly shifts to the E-Pac, it might be a while before we get storm on the Atlantic side.....June/July climatology on the Atlantic side is hard to overcome but 94L took us for quite a ride over the last week.
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1720. RTLSNK
Quoting Neapolitan:
People are talking about poor little 94L as though it's been clogging the blog for weeks, when the fact is it's been a official invest for fewer than five full days. I guess we spend so much time watching and waiting for these early-season pots to boil that some of us lose sense of time.

Maybe the phenomenon should have a name. You know, something like "The Weather Underground Time Dilation Effect"? ;-)


I like it, the WUTDE. You are now a part of Wunderground History. :)

WARNING - WUTDE ALERT - WARNING
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1719. hydrus
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1718. hydrus
Quoting clwstmchasr:


I did see that. I wouldn't be surprised if we get our "A" storm sometime in the next 14 days.
That is what I was thinking also..The 6 to 10 day forecast seems to affirm what the GFS is showing...
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The last co-ordinates are 18.1N and 81.7W and if I am seeing correctly that is exactly where the convection is forming.
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8242
1715. MahFL
Convection is still spreading west. Still some SW shear though.
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Quoting AtHomeInTX:


Wow. Didn't read that. I know we're dry but that's just scary.
I have read this and in South Central Texas we are getting hotter and dryer every year it seems which is dropping our yearly average rainfall. Soon Central Texas will be West Texas as far as weather is concerned. For the past 4 months South Central Texas has averaged 10 to 15 degrees higher than normal with little to no rain, do we see a trend?
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1713. aquak9
Another Recoon Recall.
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1712. 7544
morning all looks like the nam and the ngps still want to bring 94l to so fla . do you think at least they might get some rain from it even if uts slowing down on developing tia Link
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1711. emcf30
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


I was looking for that yesterday, so glad you posted it. The ITCZ is a little further north than normal for this time of the year.


Yea it has made a big jump in the past 10 days in the Eastern Zones.
Member Since: August 7, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1933
1710. hydrus
Quoting clwstmchasr:


It tells the story.
If you have a moment, check out the GFS. It looks chaotic after a week or so...Link
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Quoting emcf30:

Africa Intertropical Front



I was looking for that yesterday, so glad you posted it. The ITCZ is a little further north than normal for this time of the year.
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1708. hydrus
NAM out at 84 hours...
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1706. emcf30

Africa Intertropical Front

Member Since: August 7, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1933
Quoting IKE:


Lots of moisture being depleted.
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Note: 45 minutes old.
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1703. hydrus
Quoting IKE:

This little baby comes in handy......


Yes indeed...The blob train continues...
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1702. IKE

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We could use a nice little tropical system here in Melbourne. Starting to get really dry.
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1700. IKE

Quoting clwstmchasr:


This is why we don't get a lot of storms in June. Our Cape Verde storms form from waves that already have a good tight spin to them and in non El Nino years, wind shear is down. In June, these storms try to from from these very broad lows that take forever to develop and have to battle wind shear.
This little baby comes in handy......


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It was 105 degrees for the 2nd day
in a row in Houston. (With a forecast of 95)
In June!
I am going to be a wishcaster before long.
Had some scattered showers yesterday
with storms to the north and
storms to the south but not a drop of
rain for my parched lawn.
This is crazy weather!
This endless drought and high temps
are making people crazy!
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1697. emcf30
From Crown Weather. This is the area I was speaking of a few days ago. We will see if it pans out.
Invest 94-L Likely Not To Develop; What’s That Forecast By The Model Guidance Near The Bahamas?
Rob Lightbown on June 7, 2011, 5:51 am
Analysis using the UW-CIMSS satellite data indicates that the strongest vorticity is located up around 500 millibars, however, it may be trying to spin down into the 700 to 850 millibar levels. This may be the “spin-off” low pressure system that the GFS model has been and continues to forecast to develop and track into the vicinity of the Bahamas.

It seems that the GFS model wants to develop a new area of low pressure near the Turks and Caicos islands by Wednesday evening and track it first northwestward across the Bahamas late this week and then it becomes linked up with a strong frontal boundary pushing offshore of the US East Coast. The European model also seems to want to develop a new area of low pressure near Andros Island on Thursday and tracks it northward across Grand Bahama Island on Saturday before it is swept out into the open Atlantic by a frontal system pushing offshore of the US East Coast early next week.

Atlantic Tropical weather Discussion

Member Since: August 7, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1933
Quoting IKE:

Probably get .02 inches of rain if that happened.

I wave the white flag on 94L. Yeah...call me a downcaster. LOL. Increasing shear....dry air...no low-level convergence....no upper-level divergence. Now watch it prove me wrong...again.....



You surrender?
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Hi all =) How is everyone?
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Still needs a little, and I mean little, work before becoming a Tropical Depression. I expect 91E to be the Pacific's first system by this afternoon.

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1692. emcf30
All eyes will be on the area of the Bahamas in the coming week
Member Since: August 7, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1933
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1690. IKE

Quoting DestinJeff:


Ike, look at that black-triangle model that isn't ... it is headed right for our houses!
Probably get .02 inches of rain if that happened.

I wave the white flag on 94L. Yeah...call me a downcaster. LOL. Increasing shear....dry air...no low-level convergence....no upper-level divergence. Now watch it prove me wrong...again.....


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Quoting IKE:
I'll say they give it a 20% chance on the next TWO.


Can you give me the lottery numbers for tomorrow night:)
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1686. IKE
Wind shear is around 30 knots where the NHC has it at......


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91E is now worth storm watching about!
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1684. PTXer
Quoting DestinJeff:
There is a reason invests seem to take forever to develop into the real deal: because we start talking about them when they are invests.

We were talking about this one even before it was an invest.
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Map fixed.
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Quoting IKE:


$$
FORECASTER BRENNAN
Not surprised. The area of convection is slowly expanding. Watch it blow up today and develop. LOL
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8242

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About JeffMasters

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