Tropical Storm Don forms in the Gulf of Mexico

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 9:29 PM GMT on July 27, 2011

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Tropical Storm Don, the fourth tropical cyclone of the 2011 season, has formed in the Gulf of Mexico just north of the Yucatan Peninsula. Hurricane Hunters began investigating the system earlier this afternoon and quickly found a closed surface circulation. As the mission continued to gather data from what was thought to be a tropical depression at the time, winds of around 39 mph were found, as well as a 1001 mb central pressure, bringing the system up to tropical storm strength.


Figure 1. Satellite loop of Tropical Storm Don. This loop will stay current.

The official forecast for Don agrees with what most of the models have been suggesting over the past 24 hours. Don will make its way toward the northwest over the next 48 hours before making landfall somewhere between Brownsville and Galveston. The statistical models tend to suggest a more southerly track toward Brownsville, and the dynamical models are forecasting anything from Corpus Christi to Galveston. They all tend to agree landfall will occur late on the 29th (Friday night). Whether or not Don will reach hurricane status is still in question. The Hurricane Center's initial forecast is that Don will remain a tropical storm until landfall. Today some models were intensifying Don to a strong tropical storm, but none crossed the hurricane threshold. Now that we have data from aircraft reconnaissance, the models will be able to get a better handle on potential intensity. The runs that occur later tonight and early tomorrow will have much less uncertainty than those from today.


Figure 2. Model forecast tracks for Tropical Storm Don as of Wednesday afternoon.

I believe Jeff will be back tomorrow for an update.

Angela

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Quoting wolftribe2009:
If this becomes a CAT2 or greater it is going to be a nightmare along the Texas Coast. They have little time to evacuate. I remember Hurricane Rita. I pray it doesn't get that bad but people in Texas need to start getting prepared NOW! Better to be safe than sorry.
Unless hits between Bownsville and Corpus, the King ranch area. For you non Texans it is no normal ranch size. 1,289 sq mi
Member Since: August 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3293
Quoting doorman79:


Are the grandkids over for the night Pat? lol



None of dem yet...

But I like da Movie.


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Dry air not a problem for Don, will expect to endure 20-30kt shear
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Vorticity Map is starting to glow around Don.



Just hanging on for days and now still just hanging around. This has been going on for a while.
Is it going to boil or not? Does anyone know?
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i hop you guys dont mine me saying this but i would not mine a cat 2 or 3 storm right now am this starting too get a little sick of 60 too 65 mph storms we been geting and i want some in real too track
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721. yoboi
Quoting TxHurricanedude11:

those people might be getting ahead of themselves


no people hear been thru this routine more than anyone since 2005
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Quoting Patrap:
Don is the Opening Act in a way,, the Meat of CV spinners is yet to rain down upon us, but the Wave train will be spitting um out Like 101 Dalmatian Pup's soon nuff.



Are the grandkids over for the night Pat? lol
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I'm not sure about a major hurricane, but I certainly do think there is a pretty good chance we might see Hurricane DON at the very least.
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*scratches head*

The only way I can see any further east than Houston-area is if Don gets really broad. Strong or weak, continue NW-ish.

(Beta effect - poleward pull - depends on system size, not intensity).

Additionally, if this system grows significantly in size, I think It'd have to stay a TS, not a 'cane.
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717. DFWjc
Quoting JoltyJacob:
Me quede dormido, oopppsssss, LOL, =).

Then wake up, it's definitely not boring in here....
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Quoting BackwoodsTN:
Very highly unlikely Don gets even to a strong TS before landfall, even toward the TX/LA border. 65mph is generous.


Explain why, if you don't mind me saying.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32696
Quoting louisianaboy444:
I look at the pattern and all the possibilities that could ensue so many professional forecasters are getting so wiped by these models(most of you on here)...where's the gut feeling?...where's the experience...i can remember a conversation 2 nights ago when people acted like i was crazy when i said 90L still had a chance because "ooo the models show squat and La la la..let me tell you something that i think everyone is starting to see...our models need serious work because they are trash...I dont need a computer to tell me what's going to happen i can look at things myself and by my own experiences make an educated guess


Computer models are only as good as the data they feed them and Don is a small system its hard for global models to see him.
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I just composed a blog entry on Tropical Storm Don for anyone interested.

Link

I am pretty impressed with the satellite presentation. It will be interesting to see what recon finds tomorrow morning.
Member Since: August 12, 2007 Posts: 11 Comments: 2448
Good grief people see one set of model runs that go to tx/la and all of the sudden Don is now going there.
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Koritheman, ur probably right i guess some wishful thinking for a larger storm and hopefully more rain for Texas
Member Since: July 25, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 453
Quoting mynameispaul:


Yes, those storms coming up the Texas coast can be tricky. I'm in SW Louisiana and keeping an eye on this one.


You're a wise guy! Always be prepared regardless!
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Quoting BackwoodsTN:
Very highly unlikely Don gets even to a strong TS before landfall, even toward the TX/LA border. 65mph is generous.



DON will be a cat 2 i have some crow seting for you with your name on it
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Don is the Opening Act in a way,, the Meat of CV spinners is yet to rain down upon us, but the Wave train will be spitting um out Like 101 Dalmatian Pup's soon nuff.

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Quoting cloudburst2011:




all this talk well the only place DON can go is texas it cant come to la there is strong shear over the northern gulf and the high is going to building over the northern gom ...the furthest north this can come is tex la border and then you are going to have a much weaker storm..the more north it goes the more shear it will have to endure 30-40kts


Not true. The highest wind shear that Don will have to endure is 20 knots, and that's an absolute max.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32696
I say,wait for the 1200 models ,might have more input from HH info.
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I look at the pattern and all the possibilities that could ensue so many professional forecasters are getting so wiped by these models(most of you on here)...where's the gut feeling?...where's the experience...i can remember a conversation 2 nights ago when people acted like i was crazy when i said 90L still had a chance because "ooo the models show squat and La la la..let me tell you something that i think everyone is starting to see...our models need serious work because they are trash...I dont need a computer to tell me what's going to happen i can look at things myself and by my own experiences make an educated guess
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2011JUL27 201500 2.5 1005.6 35.0 2.5 2.5 2.5 NO LIMIT OFF OFF -64.96 -61.94 UNIFRM N/A -0.0 22.16 86.92 FCST GOES13 29.2
2011JUL27 204500 2.6 1004.4 37.0 2.6 2.7 3.2 0.2T/hour OFF OFF -54.06 -60.40 UNIFRM N/A N/A 22.19 86.97 FCST GOES13 29.3
2011JUL27 211500 2.6 1004.4 37.0 2.6 2.7 3.8 0.2T/hour OFF OFF -45.36 -61.69 CRVBND N/A N/A 22.21 87.03 FCST GOES13 29.3
2011JUL27 214500 2.7 1003.2 39.0 2.7 2.9 3.4 0.2T/hour OFF OFF -47.66 -60.19 UNIFRM N/A N/A 22.25 87.09 FCST GOES13 29.4
2011JUL27 221500 2.7 1003.2 39.0 2.7 2.9 3.4 0.2T/hour OFF OFF -44.06 -58.36 UNIFRM N/A N/A 22.28 87.16 FCST GOES13 29.5
2011JUL27 224500 2.8 1002.0 41.0 2.8 3.1 3.3 0.2T/hour OFF OFF -47.06 -56.11 UNIFRM N/A N/A 22.32 87.24 FCST GOES13 29.5
2011JUL27 231500 2.8 1001.9 41.0 2.8 3.1 3.8 0.2T/hour OFF OFF -45.96 -53.88 CRVBND N/A N/A 22.36 87.32 FCST GOES13 29.6


T number up by .6 since formation... showing strengthening
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Quoting yoboi:


i live in sw la people already getting supplies from stores if you wait to long nothing will be left


.......nevermind
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Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:


Variations of the parent GFDL model.
GFDI = Interpolated GFDL
GFTI = GFDL using GFS tracker, interpolated
GHMI = GFDL with intensity adjustment, interpolated


Don't know the specifics of the GFS tracker and intensity adjustment.


Thanks i have been wondering about that, now i know!
Member Since: July 25, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 453
we are at DOOMCON 1
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Quoting GHOSTY1:
Didn't the land interaction with Hurricane Ike cause the system to increase in size because the storms expanded to reach warm water and intensify, so could it be a possibly that the remaining convection over the yucatan could be spreading out to reach the warm waters and therefore being trying to increase in size


Unlikely. That was only the case with Isidore (and Ike) because their cores were still overland.
Member Since: March 7, 2007 Posts: 601 Comments: 21205
696. yoboi
Quoting TxHurricanedude11:
I agree with the track of the hwrf not the intensity through btw still dont think la/tx


i live in sw la people already getting supplies from stores if you wait to long nothing will be left
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If this becomes a CAT2 or greater it is going to be a nightmare along the Texas Coast. They have little time to evacuate. I remember Hurricane Rita. I pray it doesn't get that bad but people in Texas need to start getting prepared NOW! Better to be safe than sorry.
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Quoting stormpetrol:
Louisiana, remember earlier I said don't count La. out, I've learned a little secret from watching Dr.Lyons over the years , but a Tx/La border landfall is looking more likely all time, probably central to west La. even more so.


Yes, those storms coming up the Texas coast can be tricky. I'm in SW Louisiana and keeping an eye on this one.
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Quoting Patrap:


Thats ok Pat we get more "Rain" tomorrow then none untill Tuesday.... other than the afternoon storms the kind of hit and miss stuff anyway....

Taco :o)
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691. xcool
63
WHXX01 KWBC 280035
CHGHUR
TROPICAL CYCLONE GUIDANCE MESSAGE
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
0035 UTC THU JUL 28 2011

DISCLAIMER...NUMERICAL MODELS ARE SUBJECT TO LARGE ERRORS.
PLEASE REFER TO NHC OFFICIAL FORECASTS FOR TROPICAL CYCLONE
AND SUBTROPICAL CYCLONE INFORMATION.

ATLANTIC OBJECTIVE AIDS FOR

TROPICAL CYCLONE DON (AL042011) 20110728 0000 UTC

...00 HRS... ...12 HRS... ...24 HRS. .. ...36 HRS...
110728 0000 110728 1200 110729 0000 110729 1200

LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON
BAMS 22.5N 87.6W 23.5N 89.4W 24.6N 91.3W 25.7N 93.4W
BAMD 22.5N 87.6W 23.2N 89.4W 23.7N 91.5W 24.1N 93.7W
BAMM 22.5N 87.6W 23.3N 89.3W 24.1N 91.3W 24.8N 93.5W
LBAR 22.5N 87.6W 23.4N 89.6W 24.5N 91.8W 25.6N 94.0W
SHIP 35KTS 42KTS 49KTS 53KTS
DSHP 35KTS 42KTS 49KTS 53KTS

...48 HRS... ...72 HRS... ...96 HRS. .. ..120 HRS...
110730 0000 110731 0000 110801 0000 110802 0000

LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON
BAMS 26.6N 95.4W 28.3N 100.0W 30.4N 104.4W 32.6N 106.7W
BAMD 24.5N 96.2W 25.2N 101.5W 26.3N 107.2W 27.9N 112.1W
BAMM 25.6N 95.9W 27.1N 101.1W 29.1N 105.7W 31.3N 108.1W
LBAR 26.7N 96.4W 28.8N 101.0W 31.3N 104.9W 35.0N 105.5W
SHIP 57KTS 63KTS 67KTS 64KTS
DSHP 57KTS 31KTS 27KTS 27KTS

...INITIAL CONDITIONS...
LATCUR = 22.5N LONCUR = 87.6W DIRCUR = 300DEG SPDCUR = 8KT
LATM12 = 21.8N LONM12 = 86.3W DIRM12 = 302DEG SPDM12 = 7KT
LATM24 = 21.1N LONM24 = 84.5W
WNDCUR = 35KT RMAXWD = 25NM WNDM12 = 30KT
CENPRS = 1000MB OUTPRS = 1011MB OUTRAD = 110NM SDEPTH = M
RD34NE = 40NM RD34SE = 40NM RD34SW = 0NM RD34NW = 0NM

Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15684
maybe freeport or galveston landfall as a cat 2
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There are so many things to consider, not the least of which will be the recon data, to better understand where this ultimately goes. I do think this will trend further North. Gang, we are in for one hell of a season. The next 9 weeks will be nail biters. Remember I said that. Many of you on here no me. I have been here since Katrina. I lay low most of the time. But I am intensively engaged in the site and have been watching things closely. This could be the year. The gulf will be wicked hot by later August... I hope I am wrong.... Which is to say Don just teases us. It will bring rain hopefully to folks who need rain. The further South the better. And it will be something to watch as WU folks get back in the tracking mode, but stand by....
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Quoting gulfscout:



By the time they get a handle on this storm it will likely be too late.



that what am starting too think and it will be vary bad if this go under a RI this may be stronger then what evere one think it will
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Quoting GHOSTY1:
what type of models are the GFDI GFTI and GHMI and are these models reliable?


Variations of the parent GFDL model.
GFDI = Interpolated GFDL
GFTI = GFDL using GFS tracker, interpolated
GHMI = GFDL with intensity adjustment, interpolated


Don't know the specifics of the GFS tracker and intensity adjustment.
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685. xcool


18z
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15684
Didn't the land interaction with Hurricane Ike cause the system to increase in size because the storms expanded to reach warm water and intensify, so could it be a possibly that the remaining convection over the yucatan could be spreading out to reach the warm waters and therefore being trying to increase in size
Member Since: July 25, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 453
Evening everyone...it seems that the models are still wanting to go more north of the original models...have a feeling that high is going to pull back or not be as strong as it was once thought...i'm still thinking mid LA or possible Miss...not wishcasting at all....Texas hell you need it more than anyone...but these past few years these storms have done whatever they want to do...so sit back tighten up the belts and let's see what happens...
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Quoting MississippiWx:


It's not odd because that model has the high further east. You can see that Don is riding along the western flank of the ridge.


I see it hugging that ridge, but why is it that East. last I checked that is not consistent with HPC surface forecast. I guess I'm just confused, maybe it is time to ignore the models.
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NEXSAT GOM Animated Loop
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Quoting MTWX:
Everyone is putting in thir bets, so I might as well add mine. Galveston give or take 30 miles as a strong cat 1 to mid cat 2.....
im going that direction myself... more wishful thinking than anything else
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Quoting Tazmanian:


not yet



By the time they get a handle on DON it will likely be too late.
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677. JLPR2
Quoting sunlinepr:
Why did NAM consistently developed Don while GFS did not?
Now NAM shows another system developing S of Cuba.. while GFS does not...
I've learned from the blog that NAM is not a trustable model, am I right?



That one must be the TW we are going to get tomorrow.
And yes, NAM = bad for tropical cyclogenesis.
But the GFS isnt doing that well either.
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Remember to wait until models get the data they need to work. Like Angela suggested late tonight and morning. Else your just blowing in the wind. Showing my age.
Member Since: August 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3293

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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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