Arizona wildfires spread smoke 1,000 miles; 94L little threat to develop

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:50 PM GMT on June 07, 2011

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Smoke from Arizona's third largest fire on record, the massive Wallow fire, has now blown downwind over 1,000 miles to Iowa. The fire, which is 0% contained, is expected to rage full-force for at least three more days due to unfavorable weather. Hot, dry, and windy weather is predicted again today over Eastern Arizona, where NOAA has issued red flag warnings for critical fire conditions. A large trough of low pressure is anchored over the Southwest, and several disturbances rippling along this trough will bring strong southwesterly surface winds of 20 - 30 mph, with gusts near 35 mph, through Thursday. Extremely low humidities of 5 - 15% and hot summer temperatures are also expected, creating a dangerous fire weather situation. Yesterday, Luna, New Mexico, located about 50 miles northeast of the fire, had wind gusts in excess of 30 mph for 8 hours, temperatures near 80°F, and humidities as low as 12%. During the day yesterday, the fire grew from 300 square miles to 365 square miles, 30% of the size of Rhode Island. A separate fire burning in Southeast Arizona, the 163-square-mile Horseshoe Two fire, is the state's 5th largest fire on record. According to the Interagency Fire Center, 3.5 million acres have burned in the U.S. so far this year, the most on record for this early in the year--and more than double the 10-year average from 2001 - 2010 of 1.4 million acres. Extreme to exceptional drought conditions over most of Texas, New Mexico, and Eastern Arizona are largely responsible for the record fire season.


Figure 1. Active wildfires and smoke as visualized at 9am EDT June 7, 2011 using our wundermap for the U.S. with the Fire layer turned on. Smoke from the Wallow fire and Horseshoe Two fire in Arizona extended more than 1,000 miles, covering most of the Midwest.


Figure 2. Smoke billows from the rapidly growing Wallow fire in Eastern Arizona in this image taken by NASA's Aqua satellite on June 6, 2011. The fire beneath the smoke is outlined in red. A large pyrocumulus cloud spawned by the fire is visible along the Arizona-New Mexico border. Pyrocumulus clouds are produced by the intense heating associated with fires or volcanic eruptions. Image credit: NASA Natural Hazards website.

Caribbean disturbance 94L little threat to develop
The large, disorganized tropical disturbance (Invest 94L) in the Western Caribbean near Jamaica is looking much less organized this morning, but is still capable of bringing heavy rains as it pushes slowly northwards at less than 5 mph. Satellite estimates of rainfall for the 24-hour period ending at 8pm EDT Monday night run as high as 5 inches for northeastern Nicaragua and Honduras, with 2 - 4 inches falling over portions of Jamaica and southeast Cuba. Satellite loops show a decrease in the heavy thunderstorm activity and organization of 94L in recent hours, and the storm's low-level spiral bands and upper-level outflow are very poorly defined. The storm's center of low pressure is located about 100 miles south-southeast of Grand Cayman Island. Water vapor satellite loops show the Caribbean is quite moist, and 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. Wind shear has edged into the high range, 20 - 25 knots, which has probably contributed to 94L's deterioration.


Figure 3. Morning satellite image of 94L.

Since 94L is so large and poorly organized, today's mission by the Hurricane Hunters has been cancelled. The storm is moving slowly to the north, into a band of very high wind shear of 30 - 50 knots that lies over Cuba and the southern Bahama Islands. The SHIPS model predicts shear will rise above 30 knots by late tonight, which will make development into a tropical depression difficult. This morning's 00Z and 06Z model runs were unimpressed with 94L, with most of them showing little or no development. The 00Z run of 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, but this is looking increasingly unlikely. At 8am EDT today, NHC gave 94L a 20% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Thursday. Regardless of development, 94L is capable of bringing heavy rains of 2 - 4 inches to Jamaica, eastern Cuba, the Cayman Islands, and Haiti through Thursday. These rains will probably spread northwards into the Bahama Islands, and possibly South Florida, by Thursday or Friday.

Jeff Masters

Wallow Fire (azmtnmama)
Wallow Fire
AZ Smoke in Colorado Springs (colosprgs)
Past several days Pikes Peak and foothills covered in smoke. Photo taken at 3:30pm.
AZ Smoke in Colorado Springs
Wallow Fire (azmtnmama)
Wallow Fire

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Hey, I see we have TD1E. 94L looks bad.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


I'd give it a ~0% chance.

You might be right, but personally I think 94L is getting its act together, it has a good circulation, better than the last few days, it has not waned in convection and the shear is still low in its location due to very slow movement, I say maybe 20-30% at 8pm.Just my opinion of course
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Well organized system, needs a little filling in on the Eastern Quad but its outflow is excellent. This is well on its way to becoming Adrian, perhaps Hurricane Adrian.
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Tropical Cyclone Heat Potential is not very high at all...

Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31462
393. j2008
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


I'd give it a ~0% chance.

Lets see how long it hangs around, mabe it could spark a TD in a couple weeks.
Member Since: December 19, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 224
Quoting FrankZapper:<

Doubt many folks see your posts. Just sayin.
Member Since: September 9, 2007 Posts: 36 Comments: 4687

Burst of covection very near the center of 94L
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390. j2008
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
My original thought was that Adrian would peak as a 90 mph Category 1 hurricane. I think I may up this to a 100-105 mph Category 2 hurricane.

I'm thinking the same thing, NHC said it has a nice probability of undergoing rapid intensifacation. If it does that I'm thinking 115-120 possibly just look at Hurricane Darby last year. Oh and thanks everyone, I think I understand a little more.
Member Since: December 19, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 224


I'd give it a ~0% chance.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31462
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Tropical Depression #1 is organizing quite nicely. Nice inflow bands and banding features, and it has the appearance of a Tropical Storm. Could very well be Adrian next advisory.



Agreed on that. Fortunaly, the Mexican coast may be spared from this cyclone that looks like it will be a bonifide hurricane.
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My original thought was that Adrian would peak as a 90 mph Category 1 hurricane. I think I may up this to a 100-105 mph Category 2 hurricane.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31462


much more concentrated vorticity than 3 hours earlier
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Quoting j2008:

Unless youre like me and live in Arizona and get affected in some way by both basins. We get remnent lows from both basins that help out with the monsoon.


Oh yeah, there are certainly places that get some weather from both areas, but it's those around the coast who could get blasted who tend to frequent this blog.
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Quoting StAugustineFL:


Most people here are in the Atlantic basin and tend to focus much more on concerns closer to home. JMO


Correct. Also, EPAC storms are in areas where there are much less dynamics involved, thus, IMHO, easier ti figure out. Atlantic storms are in the humid cauldrons of the GoM and Caribbean, are affected by weather coming off land masses, affect many more people thus getting more attention, etc.
Member Since: August 22, 2008 Posts: 12 Comments: 6010
Tropical Depression #1 is organizing quite nicely. Nice inflow bands and banding features, and it has the appearance of a Tropical Storm. Could very well be Adrian next advisory.

Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31462
381. j2008
Quoting NICycloneChaser:


The majority of people on this blog are from the USA, and they're only interested in what might be coming near them, and there's very little risk of a storm in the EPAC getting anywhere near the USA.

Unless youre like me and live in Arizona and get affected in some way by both basins. We get remnent lows from both basins that help out with the monsoon.
Member Since: December 19, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 224
Quoting ShenValleyFlyFish:
Want to design something on the order of "Old Enough and Sense Enough to be Skeert". (Its copyright now cause I can document date and time posted so don't get any ideas) LOL


Ha! You get those stickers printed and I'll gladly buy one. I ain't a-scared of sayin' I'm scared.
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Quoting j2008:

Doesn't seem to make a whole lot of sense when you think about it.


The majority of people on this blog are from the USA, and they're only interested in what might be coming near them, and there's very little risk of a storm in the EPAC getting anywhere near the USA.
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Quoting j2008:

Doesn't seem to make a whole lot of sense when you think about it.


Most people here are in the Atlantic basin and tend to focus much more on concerns closer to home. JMO
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Happy to See 30% rain changes at the moment for my area starting this Friday for the next few days. According to State drought Monitor My area is under exceptional drought conditions.

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376. j2008
Quoting CybrTeddy:


Last year Celia was a Category 5 in the EPAC and 93L which became Alex was at 30%.. 93L received much more attention.

Doesn't seem to make a whole lot of sense when you think about it.
Member Since: December 19, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 224
Quoting j2008:
Funny theres a Tropical Depression out there now and theres less people on here.....that doesnt make sense!! Oh well maybe when we have Hurricane Adrian people will pay attention.


Last year Celia was a Category 5 in the EPAC and 93L which became Alex was at 30%.. 93L received much more attention.
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Is it (94L) dead yet?

TIA
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373. j2008
Funny theres a Tropical Depression out there now and theres less people on here.....that doesnt make sense!! Oh well maybe when we have Hurricane Adrian people will pay attention.
Member Since: December 19, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 224
Quoting MrMixon:


My guess... pride. Think of those "No Fear" stickers you occasionally see on cars and trucks. When I see lightning I take cover, but there are plenty of folks who'll give you a hard time: "Oh man, it's barely raining... it's only a little lightning... what's your problem? You scared?"

Want to design something on the order of "Old Enough and Sense Enough to be Skeert". (Its copyright now cause I can document date and time posted so don't get any ideas) LOL
Member Since: September 9, 2007 Posts: 36 Comments: 4687
Quoting MrMixon:


Yep, as the bible says: "Pride cometh before the Ka-POW of a lightning bolt melting your shoes to the pavement."


hahaha
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7280
Quoting HCW:


You forgot to use all caps :)
i am smarter than that
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 169 Comments: 53296
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
troll outlook

investive conditions are less favorable for troll dev and there is less than a 10 percent chance of troll activity over the next 48 hrs


KOTG.


That big hammer is working quite nicely.
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366. HCW
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
troll outlook

investive conditions are less favorable for troll dev and there is less than a 10 percent chance of troll activity over the next 48 hrs


KOTG.


You forgot to use all caps :)
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troll outlook

investive conditions are less favorable for troll dev and there is less than a 10 percent chance of troll activity over the next 48 hrs


KOTG.
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 169 Comments: 53296
Both buoy 42057 & 42058 shows SSW winds Link
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359. FrankZapper 2:48 PM PDT on June 07, 2011 Hide this comment.

Quoting Tazmanian:
i want my heat wave plzs send me one

Where do you live TAZ??




N CA
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Summer Snow in Hawaii?

Link

A severe thunderstorm caused the snow and residents were reported bringing snow down the mountain into the 80degree temps.
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
just like the fading of 94l so have the trolls

LOL
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Quoting Tazmanian:
i noted that they are all gone
just like the fading of 94l so have the trolls
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 169 Comments: 53296
Quoting Tazmanian:
i want my heat wave plzs send me one
Where do you live TAZ??
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Quoting Jedkins01:


I don't know want to be critical of people, but in my home I grew up knowing that is foolishness and immaturity, well, which is what pride leads to after all right?


Yep, as the bible says: "Pride cometh before the Ka-POW of a lightning bolt melting your shoes to the pavement."
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i noted that they are all gone
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like blob img link so on and so on
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Quoting MrMixon:


My guess... pride. Think of those "No Fear" stickers you occasionally see on cars and trucks. When I see lightning I take cover, but there are plenty of folks who'll give you a hard time: "Oh man, it's barely raining... it's only a little lightning... what's your problem? You scared?"



I don't know want to be critical of people, but in my home I grew up knowing that is foolishness and immaturity, well, which is what pride leads to after all right?
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7280
ok admins where are all my toys go
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If the coast of TX doesn't get much rain soon, it's basically suicide here. The plants, shrubs, brush, trees, soon to be animals, and water storage going to get critical.

This is a semi-tropical climate and no rain like this is down right unheard of.
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by the way i noted the nhc is doing some in new


000
WTPZ41 KNHC 072043
TCDEP1

TROPICAL DEPRESSION ONE-E DISCUSSION NUMBER 2
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL EP012011
200 PM PDT TUE JUN 07 2011

THE TROPICAL DEPRESSION CONTINUES TO EXHIBIT AN ORGANIZED PATTERN OF
DEEP CONVECTION...WITH A LARGE CURVED BAND COVERING MUCH OF THE
WESTERN HALF OF THE CIRCULATION. SATELLITE CLASSIFICATIONS ARE NOW
2.0 FROM BOTH TAFB AND SAB...AND ARE THE BASIS FOR A SLIGHTLY
HIGHER INITIAL INTENSITY OF 30 KT.

SYNOPTIC STEERING FLOW REMAINS WEAK...AND THE LATEST INITIAL MOTION
ESTIMATE IS 295/3. A SLOW NORTHWESTWARD TRACK IS FORECAST FOR THE
NEXT DAY OR TWO. BEYOND THAT TIME...A BUILDING MID-LEVEL RIDGE OVER
WESTERN MEXICO IS EXPECTED TO IMPART A WEST-NORTHWESTWARD MOTION
THROUGH DAY 5. THE HWRF AND GFDL MODELS HAVE CONSISTENTLY SHOWN
NORTHWARD TRACK BIASES AND THUS HAVE ONCE AGAIN BEEN WEIGHTED LESS
HEAVILY THAN THE GLOBAL MODELS.

THE SYNOPTIC ENVIRONMENT REMAINS FAVORABLE FOR INTENSIFICATION...
WITH WARM SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURES AND LIGHT WIND SHEAR. THE
INTENSITY GUIDANCE GENERALLY SHOWS GRADUAL STRENGTHENING OVER THE
NEXT 4 DAYS...AND THE OFFICIAL FORECAST BRINGS THIS SYSTEM TO A
HURRICANE IN A COUPLE OF DAYS. IN FACT...THE SHIPS MODEL SHOWS A
HIGH PROBABILITY OF RAPID INTENSIFICATION DURING THE NEXT
DAY. THE OFFICIAL FORECAST FOLLOWS A BLEND OF THE SHIPS AND LGEM
GUIDANCE.



FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS

INIT 07/2100Z 11.7N 100.2W 30 KT 35 MPH
12H 08/0600Z 12.2N 100.4W 40 KT 45 MPH
24H 08/1800Z 12.8N 100.7W 50 KT 60 MPH
36H 09/0600Z 13.6N 101.5W 60 KT 70 MPH
48H 09/1800Z 14.5N 102.4W 70 KT 80 MPH
72H 10/1800Z 15.2N 104.4W 80 KT 90 MPH
96H 11/1800Z 16.0N 106.0W 85 KT 100 MPH
120H 12/1800Z 17.0N 108.0W 75 KT 85 MPH
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Quoting StAugustineFL:


It'd be nice too if the high pressure moves out and puts an end to the easterly fetch. East winds in NE FL = interior storms = bad news for me.


Well a southeast wind in the wet season usually brings our strongest thunderstorms here in the Tampa Bay area, however, when the air mass because very tropical and a trough of low pressure sets up, a southwest wind can bring torrential rain overnight and early morning here, and strong storms in your area..
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7280
Quoting Jedkins01:


I guess some people make habits of ignoring that sense to prepare for danger, for reasons I do not know or understand...


My guess... pride. Think of those "No Fear" stickers you occasionally see on cars and trucks. When I see lightning I take cover, but there are plenty of folks who'll give you a hard time: "Oh man, it's barely raining... it's only a little lightning... what's your problem? You scared?"

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Thing is, here in SE TX we need that easterly fetch to get our rain off the gulf
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Here in SWFL they are already talking about canceling the 4th of July fireworks if we don't get rain soon. And if we don't get rain soon, there will be the "uninformed" idiots that will still have the home fireworks that will pose a real problem for the brush fires.
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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.