Arizona's fire danger to increase Saturday; Adrian hits Category 4

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:06 PM GMT on June 10, 2011

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The powerful winds that have fanned Arizona's massive Wallow fire into the state's second largest fire on record will remain relatively modest on Friday, and the forecast for Eastern Arizona calls for afternoon winds of just 10 - 15 mph. On Thursday, Luna, New Mexico, located about 50 miles northeast of the fire, had sustained winds that peaked at just 12 mph, with gusts to 22. These are the lightest afternoon winds the fire region has seen all week, though firefighting efforts were hindered by very low relative humidities that reached 5% on Thursday. Firefighters were able to make progress Thursday, and the Wallow fire is now 5% contained. Unfortunately, NOAA's Storm Prediction Center forecasts that critical fire conditions will return on Saturday and Sunday, with strong southwest winds of 15 - 20 mph, gusting to 35 mph. The return of critical fire conditions this weekend means that the Wallow fire will likely become Arizona's largest wildfire in history, a distinction currently held by the 2002 Rodeo-Chediski fire (732 square miles.) The Wallow fire has grown steadily from 300 square miles on Sunday to 603 square miles on Thursday--about 50% of the size of Rhode Island.


Figure 1. Smoke from Arizona fires, including the Wallow Fire, continued traveling toward the northeast on June 8, 2011. As the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on the Terra satellite acquired this natural-color image at 12:10 Central Daylight Time, thick smoke stretched from New Mexico and Texas northeastward to Illinois. Image credit: NASA Earth Observatory.

94L bringing heavy rains to the Bahamas
The large, disorganized tropical disturbance (94L) that brought heavy rains to Jamaica, Cuba, and Haiti early this week reorganized slightly overnight, and is now bringing heavy rains to the Bahama Islands. The storm killed at least 23 people in Haiti earlier this week, due to torrential flooding rains. Satellite-estimated rainfall amounts indicate 8 -10 inches of rain fell over Haiti's southwestern peninsula this week. None of the reliable computer models is showing development of 94L into a tropical depression, and NHC is giving the disturbance a 10% chance of developing by Sunday. Wind shear is a high 20 - 30 knots in the region between Cuba and South Carolina, making development unlikely. Elsewhere in the Atlantic, none of the reliable computer models is predicting tropical cyclone development over the next seven days.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of Hurricane Adrian taken at 10:15am EDT June 10, 2011.

Annular Adrian becomes the first major hurricane of the Eastern Pacific hurricane season
Hurricane Adrian put on an impressive bout of rapid intensification Thursday, intensifying into the season's first major hurricane in the Eastern Pacific. Adrian is the globe's 6th Category 4 or stronger tropical cyclone of the year. Adrian is expected to remain far enough offshore the coast of Mexico to not pose a threat to that country. Gradual weakening is likely through the weekend, since Adrian will be tracking over cooler ocean waters. Adrian's decay will be slower than usual for a hurricane, since it has become what is called an annular hurricane. Annular hurricanes feature a large eye surrounded by a very thick eyewall, with no spiral rain bands. The very thick eyewall makes annular hurricanes resistant to weakening due to wind shear, dry air, or cool waters. Annular hurricanes are rare; only 3% of all Eastern Pacific tropical cyclones become annular, and 1% of all Atlantic ones.

A record 100-year flood on the Missouri River
The greatest flood in recorded history is occurring along sections of the Missouri River, which runs from Montana to St. Louis, Missouri. On Thursday, the river hit 28.0' feet at Williston, North Dakota, surpassing the record flood height set in 1912. The river is expected to continue to rise to 1.4' above the 1912 mark by Tuesday. This week, the Missouri River at Omaha, Nebraska surpassed the level set during the great 1993 flood, and the river's height is currently the 2nd greatest on record, 9' below the mark set in 1952. Water releases at the six flood control dams on the Missouri River are now at more than double their previous all-time highs; these dams were built between 1940 and 1964. This great 100-year flood on the Missouri River is just beginning, and is likely to cause major damage over the next few weeks.

Have a great weekend everyone, and I'll be back Monday with a new post.

Jeff Masters

Volunteers (dhennem)
Filling sandbags at the Hamburg, IA elementery school.
Volunteers
Albuquerque Smoke-Free for Now (olzab2)
Arizona's Wallow fire blankets Albuquerque in smoke for days, but we got a real "breather" at last on 6/8/11
Albuquerque Smoke-Free for Now
Sun Setting on Heavy Smoke (gilg72)
814 PM. Sun slipped down lower than the heavy clouds, but very heavy smoke. Almost didn't see it. Smoke comes from an over 100,000 acre fire in SW Az.
Sun Setting on Heavy Smoke

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Quoting Tazmanian:
could this volcano chang the weather?
We were talking about that earlier too. IIRC from discussions of Ejakxxxxxxxxx [Sooooo can't spell that Icelandic name....] last April, volcanic eruptions in the tropics are more likely to impact wx patterns than those in close to the poles, given the earth's circulation patterns. We were speculating earlier, but there's still too much unknown about it to say what this particular eruption could cause....
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This is the Vis for Pinatubo 1991 Phillipines at eruption+3 hours. Changed earth temp by -.2 degrees C

Link
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1877. JRRP
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Quoting Tazmanian:
could this volcano chang the weather?


I think it's far too early to determine that, but it's certainly possible.
Member Since: March 7, 2007 Posts: 583 Comments: 20827
Quoting pottery:

They could'nt forecast a Volcano in Ethiopia....
what do THEY know?


Not to trust you with rum?
Member Since: September 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6598
1874. beell
Quoting Levi32:
The sun rises...



Well, that's somewhat reassuring.
: -)
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1873. pottery
Quoting twincomanche:
The weather channel just assured me that we are safe for the next three days from hurricanes.

They could'nt forecast a Volcano in Ethiopia....
what do THEY know?
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1872. JRRP
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Quoting twincomanche:
The weather channel just assured me that we are safe for the next three days from hurricanes.
Waid.... aren't u somewhere near Yellowstone?..... lol
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Quoting pottery:

Yeah, I know.
It's along way away for most people I guess....

The BEST Coverage on the Ethiopian eruption, so far, is on Wunderground.
Thanks guys!
I don't see any coverage of it from the normal outlets. They picked up the New Zealand quake, but nothing on NARBO. Kudos to the WU bloggers!!!
Member Since: August 3, 2005 Posts: 10 Comments: 5608
could this volcano chang the weather?
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115235
Quoting pottery:

Yeah, I know.
It's along way away for most people I guess....

The BEST Coverage on the Ethiopian eruption, so far, is on Wunderground.
Thanks guys!


This is very interesting though I understand little of it, ! Staying tuned and learning...
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Quoting twincomanche:
The weather channel just assured me that we are safe for the next three days from hurricanes.


So its written in stone?
Member Since: September 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6598
Quoting Levi32:
The sun rises...




can you tell how tall the ash is from that
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115235
@twinc... we've been talking about it since before it happened - the grounding I mean - and it was one of the first things mentioned when pple noticed the earthquake + plume in Eritrea.... read back a few pages.
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Quoting 1900hurricane:

I'm not 100% sure, but that "black smudge" looks like it could be the shadow of the main ash column from the eruption.


you can tell they are high, they are the only well defined clouds in that area of the sunrise.
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1860. pottery
Quoting twincomanche:
I was referring to on here that no one was talking about it.

Yeah, I know.
It's along way away for most people I guess....

The BEST Coverage on the Ethiopian eruption, so far, is on Wunderground.
Thanks guys!
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1859. Patrap
sat24 first viz coming in
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Quoting VAbeachhurricanes:


whats the black smudge at the source?

The shadow behind it is also pretty cool looking.

I'm not 100% sure, but that "black smudge" looks like it could be the shadow of the main ash column from the eruption. Just my guess though.
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1857. Levi32
Quoting VAbeachhurricanes:


whats the black smudge at the source?

The shadow behind it is also pretty cool looking.


I'm still waiting for a couple more images. You can't tell a whole lot from the very edge of sunrise.
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This is a reasonable blog of a geo keeping an eye on Kalta (Iceland) - so far no big deal. We should have a sub-blog called LavaUnderground.

Link
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Quoting Levi32:
The sun rises...



whats the black smudge at the source?

The shadow behind it is also pretty cool looking.
Member Since: September 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6598
1853. pottery
Quoting Neapolitan:

Al Jazeera is.

BBC as well.
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1852. Levi32
The sun rises...

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1851. pottery
Quoting twincomanche:
Kind of interesting. The eruption in Chile is causing flight interruptions all the way to Australia and no one is talking about it.

I have been following that.
Flights are grounded for the second day.
Big Problems....
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Quoting twincomanche:
Kind of interesting. The eruption in Chile is causing flight interruptions all the way to Australia and no one is talking about it.

Al Jazeera is.
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interesting image... cant tell what that black mark is at the source of the plume. anyone?
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1848. JRRP
Quoting eyestalker:
MAVS WIN
MAVS WIN!
MAVS WIN!!
MAVS WIN!!!

lol
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Quoting TexasGulf:
1810: The planet is unzipping itself

OK. NOW is everyone ready to give the space shuttle back to Houston?
LOL... pretty effective threat there... lol
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1845. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting CosmicEvents:
What else could it be besides a big eruption?
nothing just fireworks nothing to see here just move along
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 174 Comments: 54353
1844. Torgen
Quoting TexasGulf:
1810: The planet is unzipping itself

OK. NOW is everyone ready to give the space shuttle back to Houston?


I think whoever has the Shuttles are gonna pull a Cartman and say "Screw you guys" and leave in it themselves. ;)
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1810: The planet is unzipping itself

OK. NOW is everyone ready to give the space shuttle back to Houston?
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1842. Bitmap7


Well the BD suggests its an eruption. Notice how the supposed source is in white and further out from it the greys(higher clouds) appea,r representing where the ash cloud would expand vertically, after that it tapers out.
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Sat24 updates every 15 min, iirc...
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Hopefully nothing bigger hits New Zealand, or we could be waking up tomorrow to two disasters.
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1839. Patrap
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What else could it be besides a big eruption?
Member Since: August 3, 2005 Posts: 10 Comments: 5608
1836. Bitmap7
sunrise in the area now a visible should be incoming in about 15-30 mins.
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1835. Patrap
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Quoting mikeylikesyouall:
i was 12 when Mt St. Helens exploded,that was very bad so if this were to say erupt what do u think the comparison would be i'm just trying to put this into perspective, Mt St Helens did affect our weather i do recall getting a early snowstorm that dumped about 20-22 inches of snow in the first week of Nov where i live.


Way too early to tell. Have to see what's really going on first. Everything so far is speculation based on earthquake readings and satellite pictures, both of which can be quite misleading.
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Quoting eyestalker:
WHAT'S UP HEAT FANS?!!!?!?!?!???!!!!1!one!!1eleven!!1!


hahahaha love it!
Member Since: September 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6598
i was 12 when Mt St. Helens exploded,that was very bad so if this were to say erupt what do u think the comparison would be i'm just trying to put this into perspective, Mt St Helens did affect our weather i do recall getting a early snowstorm that dumped about 20-22 inches of snow in the first week of Nov where i live.
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1830. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 174 Comments: 54353
1829. pottery
Quoting Bitmap7:


Foreshocks like in Japan.

OK
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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.