Bud a heavy rain threat for Mexico; 1-year anniversary of Joplin tornado

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 11:07 AM GMT on May 22, 2012

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Tropical Storm Bud intensified into a 40 mph storm this morning in the Eastern Pacific, off the coast of Mexico, and poses a significant flooding threat to the country late this week. The storm has been slow to organize due to its large size, as seen on satellite loops. But with favorable SSTs of 29 - 30°C and light to moderate wind shear in the 5 - 15 knots range expected along its path, Bud should steadily organize today and Wednesday, and become Hurricane Bud by Thursday. A trough of low pressure is expected to swing north of the storm late this week, turning Bud to the north towards the Mexican coast between Manzanillo and Acapulco. However, the trough of low pressure may not be strong enough to bring Bud ashore, and the storm could linger near the coast for several days, potentially deluging the coast with very heavy rains capable of triggering dangerous flash floods and mudslides, beginning on Friday.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of Bud.

Record earliest date for formation of the season's second named storm
Bud is the second named storm to form in the Eastern Pacific in 2012--Tropical Storm Aletta, which formed on May 15, was the first. Bud's appearance on May 21 marks the earliest date since record keeping began in 1949 for formation of the season's second named storm. The previous record was set in 1984, when the second named storm formed on May 29. Only two other years have had two named storms in May in the Eastern Pacific--2007 and 1956, which both had the second named storm of the year form on May 30. If Bud ends up making landfall in Mexico as a hurricane, it would be only the second Eastern Pacific May hurricane on record to hit Mexico. The other was Hurricane Agatha of May 24,1971, which hit the same stretch of coast that Bud is threatening. Agatha made landfall as a Category 2 hurricane about 45 mi (75 km) from Zihuatanejo, Mexico. The village of Playa Azul was hard hit by the storm, with up to half of the village's homes destroyed. Ocean temperatures this year in the region where Aletta and Bud formed are only slightly above average, so the large scale atmospheric patterns are probably more to blame for this year's exceptionally early start to hurricane season in the Eastern Pacific.


Figure 2. True-color visible satellite image of Alberto taken by the Aqua satellite at 2 pm EDT Monday May 21, 2012. Image credit: NASA.

Alberto headed out to sea
Tropical Depression Alberto is racing northeastwards out to sea, and has been substantially weakened by very high wind shear of 50 knots and passage over cool ocean waters of 24°C (75°F). Alberto will not trouble any land areas, and does not have long to live before being completely dismantled by the high wind shear.


Figure 3. Aerial view of damage from the May 22, 2011 Joplin, Missouri tornado. Image credit: Wikipedia.

One-year anniversary of the Joplin, Missouri EF-5 tornado
May 22 marks the 1-year year anniversary of the deadly Joplin Missouri tornado. The massive EF-5 tornado with winds in excess of 200 mph mowed a 14-mile path of destruction up to one mile wide across the southern portion of the city. The tornado killed 161 people--the highest death toll from a U.S. tornado since 1947, and the seventh deadliest tornado in U.S. history. The tornado did $3 billion in damage, making it the most expensive tornado in world history. The death toll from the tornado undoubtedly would have been higher had the National Weather Service not issued a tornado warning a full 24 minutes in advance of the tornado. This is nearly double the average tornado warning lead time of thirteen minutes.

Links
The most remarkable audio I've ever heard of people surviving a direct hit by a violent tornado was posted to Youtube by someone who took shelter in the walk-in storage refrigerator at a gas station during the Joplin tornado. There isn't much video.


Video 1. Video of the Joplin, Missouri tornado of May 22, 2011, entering the southwest side of town. Filmed by TornadoVideos.net Basehunters team Colt Forney, Isaac Pato, Kevin Rolfs, and Scott Peake.

Jeff Masters

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Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting GTcooliebai:
It sure did, funny how that works, it now shows a storm off FL's. east coast.


Then it shows it crossing and moving into NOLA... Sounds like the blog's idea of DOOM to me!
Member Since: September 3, 2011 Posts: 13 Comments: 3466
Effective on or about Tuesday, May 22, 2012, beginning with the 1200 Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) run, the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) will upgrade the GFS model and its associated data assimilation system (GDAS).

It didn't help.
Oh well, i guess we will just have to see.

The MRF and the ECMWF show the beginning of a diving trough, but after 90s this week, i really dont think we are going to get that.
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Quoting LargoFl:
gee south florida and east florida are getting all the rain while central florida is in a drought..go figure how mother nature thinks



Don't worry, it looks like the wet season pattern will finally be taking shape more so each day this week into next week. The rain we had last week was due to energy from a stalled front, however the wetter pattern that will steadily be taking over our area appears right now to be a more classic wet season pattern, increasing moisture and instability...


Being in a drought there is a tendency for there to be an anxiety if the drought will end. But don't worry, I really think we will eventually replace drought with frequently wet. La Nina which has been mostly dominate for a few years now is dying out and El Nino will replace it. Furthermore, because we are in a drought we might want all the rain to come now, but so far for May we are on track for what is typical of Central Florida in May, and you can see how we are transitioning nicely towards the wet season as we should in Late May. In fact we have seen the most "normal" weather so far in May that I have seen in a long time compared to much of the way off balance weather that seems to have plagued the area for many months.
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Quoting WxGeekVA:
Meanwhile, the GFS got a much needed major upgrade today!
It sure did, funny how that works, it now shows a storm off FL's. east coast.
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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:
I see TC Form Prob is up for the GOH.
But I think the GFS has gone stircrazy:



either that of it just likes trouble.


It might just be a bug in the upgrade...
Member Since: September 3, 2011 Posts: 13 Comments: 3466
The jet stream is looking more zonal, with the Bermuda High firmly in control, already.

This means that tempest in a teapot in the western Caribbean can grow, as the shear is shifted to the north. How far north it can get, is another argument.

Looking upstream, however, we can already see a system in the northwestern Pacific. That wouldn't have been possible unless the pattern is changing, and will for us, downstream.

My hurricane forecast this year begins in Asia.









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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:
I see TC Form Prob is up for the GOH.
But I think the GFS has gone stircrazy:



either that of it just likes trouble.
That pattern would produce severe weather.
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Meanwhile, the GFS got a much needed major upgrade today!
Member Since: September 3, 2011 Posts: 13 Comments: 3466
236. yoboi
Quoting Neapolitan:
Yes, even the slightly lower NWS numbers would be daily--and in some case monthly--records. But I pulled my numbers from the very reliable Intellicast.

Evansville
Paducah
Cape Girardeau
Louisville
Memphis

What, you think I make stuff up? ;-)
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I see TC Form Prob is up for the GOH.
But I think the GFS has gone stircrazy:



either that of it just likes trouble.
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234. TXCWC
12Z Euro run seems to want to develope something in the short term and bringing alot of moisture to south Florida but then drops any organized development after 2-3 days. Either way wheather you go with the GFS or Euro solution at this point looks to be, at the least, good rains for South Florida in the coming days
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There is no doubt that conditions are getting more favorable for development
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Well, it sure looks like the Caribbean is festering.
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Hey everyone! Just got done with my Atlantic Hurricane Season 2012 outlook on my blog. I would love to know what you think.
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I think the important thing to remember is regardless of if this disturbance in the NW Caribbean gets classified as a tropical cyclone or not, the main threat will be the same: heavy rainfall.
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Let's see if NHC release a STWO and then puts up invest 94L if things turn more favorable in the next couple of days.
Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 13292
18Z CIMSS wind shear analysis just came out and the 20 knot isotach is starting to retreat to the north:

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Quoting kmanislander:
The surface low seems to be on the move heading to the East parallel to the North Coast of Honduras


There is no question in my mind that this is strong tropical disturbance, will it become a TD/TS , I don't know, but here on Grand Cayman it caused just as much damage as if it was a TS.
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Quoting SouthDadeFish:
Kman, this is the 12Z GFS 36 hour 200mb forecast. Notice the relaxing of the 200mb winds in the NW Caribbean:



My suspicion is that if the system can stay in the Caribbean long enough (until this time frame) then conditions will become more conducive for tropical cyclone formation. GFS is showing winds less than 20 knots throughout the NW Caribbean at this time frame.

I wonder where I hear something of the sort and saying that in 36hours time shear will die down huh tell me who said that
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 9557
Quoting Some1Has2BtheRookie:


Looks like poor vacation planning to me. I would have started off in Louisiana, flown over Florida and spent the rest of my vacation in the Bahamas. ;-)



LOL! Well you know it's that time of year. By the way the Euro & Nogaps is onboard as well for something cutting across FL then back across the state to LA or FL Panhandle.

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hey guys just wanted to let you know that I have analysed the close up vis and rgb and low cloud sat loops to discover that we had repeating had three low level circulation one near rotan one between Grand Cayman and Isle of youth and another off the coast of Hon/Nic boader SW of jamaica now the circulation that was off NW of Grand cayman was kinda weak and has now open up to a trough and maybe opening up to nothing now that on is going NW so that one is dead the other one that was off of Hon/Nic boarder coast didn't even make a full turn just a 3/4 turn then done the last one is the strongest one that is off of Rotan it has a real good spin it was naked but it is now starting to rebuild convection right on top
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 9557
Quoting GTcooliebai:
GFS Precip calling for close to an inch. on Monday. Rain looks to start Sunday afternoon.



This is thru next Tuesday. 12Z GFS Precip accum.

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Quoting Grothar:
Anyone see the GFS loop. It moves the system over Florida, into the Bahamas, back to Florida and into Louisiana.

Link


Looks like poor vacation planning to me. I would have started off in Louisiana, flown over Florida and spent the rest of my vacation in the Bahamas. ;-)
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Quoting kmanislander:
The surface low seems to be on the move heading to the East parallel to the North Coast of Honduras
Heading towards that big blob of deep convection ? If anything were to develop IMO that's where it would be.
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Quoting kmanislander:


There is also an area of low shear just off the NE coast by the border between Honduras and Nicaragua. If it gets to that area it might stand a chance.

Kman, this is the 12Z GFS 36 hour 200mb forecast. Notice the relaxing of the 200mb winds in the NW Caribbean:



My suspicion is that if the system can stay in the Caribbean long enough (until this time frame) then conditions will become more conducive for tropical cyclone formation. GFS is showing winds less than 20 knots throughout the NW Caribbean at this time frame.
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And G'day all,

#208 - ST2K,
Certainly the nastier storms have! I'll be watching cautiously the steering patterns with any disturbances over the Bahamas as always! LOL, of course - from all directions given my location... ;)

***

A totally unrelated / off-topic offering here, but I saw an unusual weather-related phenomena I caught yesterday aftn purely by chance, perfect timing, serendipity thingy...

Near 2 PM, sunny / PC skies, light ELY winds, almost hot but comfortably dry / low humidity, stable weather locally by SE LA standards for late May, was driving N on road paralleling Bayou Terrebonne when suddenly saw a highly unusual sight appear in the middle of the bayou -- a column of water was being spewed, sprayed straight up reaching nearly 10 feet out of seemingly nowhere!!! Had the appearance that someone was under the sfc with a garden hose aimed skyward... Took my shocked brain a sec or two to grasp what it was, as saw it was also radiating 8-10" waves, fish were jumping airborne away from it... and the whole incident lasted only about 5-6 seconds -- clearly was a dust-devil type feature turned micro-waterspout! LOL... As said, had perfect timing to catch it, and more I thought about it after, perfect physical conditions to allow formation - the bayou is only about 60 ft across there, there's a relatively tall bank on west side lined with concrete rip-rap (and a building), a bridge immediately above / adjacent on north side, east bank is cleared, sloping downwards, had rising aftn heat and light E winds...

Okay, no big deal, agreed... But it was a "WOW, Look at That" moment nonetheless that brought a smile. I've seen plenty dust-devils, etc, but never one sitting stationary over water spewing it skywards!
;)

Alright work duties a'calling...
Might hafta do some more "water-devil-spout" storm chasing on the way!
Later!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting LargoFl:
gee south florida and east florida are getting all the rain while central florida is in a drought..go figure how mother nature thinks
GFS Precip calling for close to an inch. on Monday. Rain looks to start Sunday afternoon.

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Quoting LargoFl:
notice they have backed off a lil on development
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Quoting SouthDadeFish:
I'm suspecting it may be getting drawn to the areas of deeper convection and stronger vorticity. It will be an interesting next day or so with this feature as wind shear starts to slightly relax.


There is also an area of low shear just off the NE coast by the border between Honduras and Nicaragua. If it gets to that area it might stand a chance.

Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15671
Quoting kmanislander:
The surface low seems to be on the move heading to the East parallel to the North Coast of Honduras
I'm suspecting it may be getting drawn to the areas of deeper convection and stronger vorticity. It will be an interesting next day or so with this feature as wind shear starts to slightly relax.
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Now with model support and decreasing shear as well as a circulation. What are the chances of this storm becoming a tropical depression and affecting Cuba and the Bahamas/( So Fla?) ?


Seems more likely.
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Quoting ProgressivePulse:
Rocky afternoon along the east coast, stay safe. Hail, 60mph winds and tornado's possible today.





MESOSCALE DISCUSSION 0864
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
1210 PM CDT TUE MAY 22 2012

AREAS AFFECTED...S THROUGH PARTS OF EAST CENTRAL FL

CONCERNING...SEVERE POTENTIAL...WATCH UNLIKELY

VALID 221710Z - 221915Z

PROBABILITY OF WATCH ISSUANCE...20 PERCENT

SUMMARY...ISOLATED STRONG WIND GUSTS AND/OR MARGINALLY SEVERE HAIL
WILL BE POSSIBLE THROUGH THE AFTERNOON ACROSS S THROUGH EAST CENTRAL
FL. IN ADDITION...PW VALUES AROUND 1.8 INCH AND HIGHER FREEZING
LEVELS RESULTING IN WARM CLOUD PROCESSES WILL SUPPORT HEAVY RAINFALL
RATES UP TO 1.5-2 INCH PER HOUR...ESPECIALLY WITH SUSTAINED
ACTIVITY.

DISCUSSION...AT 1645Z...REGIONAL RADAR IMAGERY SHOWED SHOWERS AND A
FEW TSTMS HAVE ALREADY DEVELOPED ACROSS S FL...PRIMARILY INVOF TWO
E-W ZONES OF LOW LEVEL CONVERGENCE...AND THE INTERSECTIONS OF THESE
BOUNDARIES WITH SEA/LAKE BREEZE BOUNDARIES PER VISIBLE SATELLITE
IMAGERY. SURFACE ANALYSES INDICATED ONE OF THE E-W BOUNDARIES WAS
LOCATED S OF LAKE OKEECHOBEE FROM SRN PALM BEACH COUNTY THROUGH
CENTRAL COLLIER COUNTY...WHILE THE SECOND ONE WAS OVER FAR S FL.
DESPITE WEAK MIDLEVEL LAPSE RATES PER THE 12Z MIA SOUNDING...SURFACE
HEATING WITHIN A MOIST ENVIRONMENT WILL MAINTAIN MODERATE
INSTABILITY. HOWEVER...THESE WEAK MIDLEVEL LAPSE RATES SUGGEST
VERTICAL PARCEL ACCELERATIONS WILL TEND TO BE WEAKER AND THUS LIMIT
UPDRAFT STRENGTH/DURATION.

MIA WSR-88D VWP DATA SHOWED WEAK VERTICALLY VEERING WINDS IN THE
LOWEST 2-3 KM AGL...BUT STRONGER SWLY MIDLEVEL WINDS ATOP SELY LOW
LEVEL WINDS WILL SUPPORT EFFECTIVE BULK SHEAR OF 25-35 KT THROUGH
THE AFTERNOON. THIS WILL AID IN SOME ORGANIZATION WITH THE
POTENTIAL FOR ISOLATED STRONGER WIND GUSTS AS THE PRIMARY THREAT.

..PETERS/WEISS.. 05/22/2012
gee south florida and east florida are getting all the rain while central florida is in a drought..go figure how mother nature thinks
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Quoting 1900hurricane:

You mean forecasting is more than making it up?!?! :P

All joking aside, I honestly completely forgot about Intellicast, so all I saw were numbers higher than I was seeing and not knowing where they came from.


You ask him where he got his figures from, and yet the website you are using has even higher forecasted values. Weather Underground's Best Forecast is calling for 100 on Sunday and 102 on Monday at Evansville Regional Airport.

http://www.wunderground.com/cgi-bin/findweather/h dfForecast?query=kevv

I don't know about the other cities. This will probably be a little warmer than reality but it's possible. Best Forecast seemed to be the only algorithm that grasped the magnitude of the March warmth 5 to 7 days in advance, though it seems to have a little bit of a warm bias in the long range.
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Quoting DocNDswamp:


Ha! I hear ya Gro, we know the saying, "misery loves company" all too well!

Just a sec, wanna relay something weird I encountered yesterday... typing skills dependent, lol...


LOL! It seems as if we get it in FL then it goes to LA next. Atleast it has been like that with recent storms to affect the US.
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http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.funa ndsun.com/1tocf/allgosf/Spacecoast/SCMAP.JPG&imgre furl=http://www.funandsun.com/1tocf/maps/flmap.htm l&h=418&w=288&sz=33&tbnid=nDkSNlS8kAlLuM:&tbnh=90& tbnw=62&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dmap%2Bof%2Beast%2Bcentr al%2Bflorida%26tbm%3Disch%26tbo%3Du&zoom=1&q=map+o f+east+central+florida&docid=URC6hQ9Tj-1qKM&sa=X&e i=HdS7T_a8OISk8gTqhaC5Aw&ved=0CJQBEPUBMAg&dur=397 map of e.cent fl.
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Quoting StormTracker2K:


It's an Alberto type set up meaning it forms right near the center of an upper low. Look below.

Not really. You can clearly follow the 850mb vorticity signature (low-level) out up through the Caribbean into the Atlantic, where the GFS deepens it.

Link
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Quoting Grothar:


Sorry! :)


Ha! I hear ya Gro, we know the saying, "misery loves company" all too well!

Just a sec, wanna relay something weird I encountered yesterday... typing skills dependent, lol...
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Not sure if this was posted already or not, but ASCAT missed most of the disturbance earlier this morning:

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Quoting SouthDadeFish:
I don't see how the GFS can deepen the low at 96 hours just north of the Bahamas in the face of 50 knot winds at 200mb:



It's an Alberto type set up meaning it forms right near the center of an upper low. Look below.

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Rocky afternoon along the east coast, stay safe. Hail, 60mph winds and tornado's possible today.





MESOSCALE DISCUSSION 0864
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
1210 PM CDT TUE MAY 22 2012

AREAS AFFECTED...S THROUGH PARTS OF EAST CENTRAL FL

CONCERNING...SEVERE POTENTIAL...WATCH UNLIKELY

VALID 221710Z - 221915Z

PROBABILITY OF WATCH ISSUANCE...20 PERCENT

SUMMARY...ISOLATED STRONG WIND GUSTS AND/OR MARGINALLY SEVERE HAIL
WILL BE POSSIBLE THROUGH THE AFTERNOON ACROSS S THROUGH EAST CENTRAL
FL. IN ADDITION...PW VALUES AROUND 1.8 INCH AND HIGHER FREEZING
LEVELS RESULTING IN WARM CLOUD PROCESSES WILL SUPPORT HEAVY RAINFALL
RATES UP TO 1.5-2 INCH PER HOUR...ESPECIALLY WITH SUSTAINED
ACTIVITY.

DISCUSSION...AT 1645Z...REGIONAL RADAR IMAGERY SHOWED SHOWERS AND A
FEW TSTMS HAVE ALREADY DEVELOPED ACROSS S FL...PRIMARILY INVOF TWO
E-W ZONES OF LOW LEVEL CONVERGENCE...AND THE INTERSECTIONS OF THESE
BOUNDARIES WITH SEA/LAKE BREEZE BOUNDARIES PER VISIBLE SATELLITE
IMAGERY. SURFACE ANALYSES INDICATED ONE OF THE E-W BOUNDARIES WAS
LOCATED S OF LAKE OKEECHOBEE FROM SRN PALM BEACH COUNTY THROUGH
CENTRAL COLLIER COUNTY...WHILE THE SECOND ONE WAS OVER FAR S FL.
DESPITE WEAK MIDLEVEL LAPSE RATES PER THE 12Z MIA SOUNDING...SURFACE
HEATING WITHIN A MOIST ENVIRONMENT WILL MAINTAIN MODERATE
INSTABILITY. HOWEVER...THESE WEAK MIDLEVEL LAPSE RATES SUGGEST
VERTICAL PARCEL ACCELERATIONS WILL TEND TO BE WEAKER AND THUS LIMIT
UPDRAFT STRENGTH/DURATION.

MIA WSR-88D VWP DATA SHOWED WEAK VERTICALLY VEERING WINDS IN THE
LOWEST 2-3 KM AGL...BUT STRONGER SWLY MIDLEVEL WINDS ATOP SELY LOW
LEVEL WINDS WILL SUPPORT EFFECTIVE BULK SHEAR OF 25-35 KT THROUGH
THE AFTERNOON. THIS WILL AID IN SOME ORGANIZATION WITH THE
POTENTIAL FOR ISOLATED STRONGER WIND GUSTS AS THE PRIMARY THREAT.

..PETERS/WEISS.. 05/22/2012
Member Since: August 19, 2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 4863
I don't see how the GFS can deepen the low at 96 hours just north of the Bahamas in the face of 50 knot winds at 200mb:

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Quoting DocNDswamp:


Fine, I can deal with it in May...
But I would be pleased if you Floridians withheld sharing such gifts toward us in Louisiana come Aug-Sep, as you have previously with Betsy, Andrew and Katrina!
Thank you...
;)


Sorry! :)
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Quoting ProgressivePulse:
Alberto was blocked by a similar ridge for a time. The chances of the ridge redeveloping in that location are rather high.



CMC is further west and takes this low right into S FL then pushes it NW into the Gulf in 3 days.

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the system might drag some humidity this way dryer air than normal for mid end of may it like spring isnot ending east central florida
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Quoting Grothar:
Anyone see the GFS loop. It moves the system over Florida, into the Bahamas, back to Florida and into Louisiana.

Link


Fine, I can deal with it in May...
But I would be pleased if you Floridians withheld sharing such gifts toward us in Louisiana come Aug-Sep, as you have previously with Betsy, Andrew and Katrina!
Thank you...
;)
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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.