Bud the strongest Eastern Pacific hurricane so early in the year; 94L may develop

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:14 PM GMT on May 25, 2012

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Category 2 Hurricane Bud is weakening, but still presents a formidable rainfall threat as it continues north-northeast towards an expected landfall between Manzanillo and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico late Friday night. Thursday night at 11 pm EDT, Bud peaked at Category 3 status, with 115 mph winds, becoming the earliest Category 3 hurricane on record in the Eastern Pacific. Recent Satellite loops show that Bud has weakened, though. The eye has disappeared, and the cloud pattern has shrunk and appears squashed, due to an increase in dry air, wind shear, and cooler sea surface temperatures affecting the storm. These hostile conditions should continue to weaken Bud to a Category 1 hurricane or strong tropical storm by the time of landfall. Bud is projected to cross the coast in a rugged, relatively unpopulated area, so wind and storm surge damage will probably be light to moderate. Heavy rain will cover a much wider area, and will be the main threat from Bud. The coast where Bud is headed towards is very mountainous, and numerous flash floods and dangerous mudslides will affect the region, probably including the cities of Manzanillo and Puerto Vallarta. I don't think Puerto Vallarta will see much in the way of wind or storm surge damage, since it is in a well-protected location and will probably be on the weak (left-front) side of the hurricane. Manzanillo is at higher risk, since it will probably be on the stronger right-front side of the hurricane.


Figure 1. True-color satellite image of Hurricane Bud taken at 12:25 pm EDT May 24, 2012. At the time, Bud was a Category 2 hurricane with 110 mph winds. Image credit: NASA.

A record May for the Eastern Pacific hurricane season
Bud is the strongest Eastern Pacific hurricane on record for so early in the year, and is tied with Hurricane Alma of 2002 (115 mph winds) as the second strongest May hurricane on record in the Eastern Pacific. Only Hurricane Adolph of 2001 (145 mph winds) was stronger. Also, Bud's appearance on May 21 marked 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. Hurricanes are uncommon in the Eastern Pacific in May; there have been just twelve since record keeping began in 1949--an average of one May hurricane every five years. 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. 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. Morning satellite image of Invest 94L.

Invest 94L off the Georgia coast could develop this weekend
An area of disturbed weather (Invest 94L) a few hundred miles east of the Georgia coast is headed northeast at about 15 mph. The disturbance has not become more organized over the past day, due to very high wind shear of 40 - 55 knots. However, the latest SHIPS model forecast predicts that wind shear will drop to the moderate range, 10 - 20 knots, on Saturday and Sunday. Most of our reliable models predict that 94L could organize into a subtropical or tropical depression or storm on Saturday or Sunday off the coast of Georgia/South Carolina. NHC is giving 94L a 70% chance of developing into a tropical or subtropical depression by Sunday morning. A ridge of high pressure is expected to build in over the weekend off the East Coast, which will force 94L to the west back towards the coast, and heavy rains from 94L are likely to begin affecting coastal South Carolina, Georgia, and Northern Florida on Saturday and Sunday. There is a lot of dry, continental air on the west side of 94L, so the rainfall amounts from the storm will be limited unless until the center makes landfall. If these rains do materialize, they would be welcome, considering the moderate to severe drought conditions in the area.

I'll have an update Saturday.

Jeff Masters

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Beryl somewhat reminds me of Andrea from 2007 this morning.
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 46 Comments: 11668
1931. WxLogic
That's what I though:

...BERYL TURNS SOUTHWESTWARD...
11:00 AM EDT Sat May 26
Location: 31.6°N 76.3°W
Max sustained: 45 mph
Moving: SW at 9 mph
Min pressure: 1001 mb
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4976
No change in intensity at 11 AM EDT...still 45 mph, 1001 millibars.
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1929. WxLogic
Quoting 7544:
shes moving or jogging south at this hour ?


SW based on my observations.
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4976
Looks to me that Beryl is taking a full on south jog, which means, that it could be having a more southerly landfall.
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1927. 7544
shes moving or jogging south at this hour ?
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Good morning Beryl... and all my fellow wunderground bloggers!

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Beryl will do a Beryl roll to the west and hit the se coast.
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I find it funny that people are comparing this year to 2004.Both years are a leap year.Beryl looks like it could affect northern Florida just like Bonnie in 04 did but on the other side of the coast.Then Alberto was in the same area where Alex formed.Lol.
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Its going to be for bayou country superfest later... its already 85.3
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6535
Quoting CybrTeddy:


However, there is still the issue of dry air impeding thunderstorm development. But I agree, once it hits the warmer waters later today it is possible we could see further development into a 50-60mph TS. I still feel that the peak intensity for Beryl will occur when Beryl is moving out to sea after it's landfall in extreme N Florida or S Georgia.


It may, but its going to be moving awfully fast
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6535
Quoting weatherh98:


It's also going to hit warmer waters and it's going to become more tropical in nature


However, there is still the issue of dry air impeding thunderstorm development. But I agree, once it hits the warmer waters later today it is possible we could see further development into a 50-60mph TS. I still feel that the peak intensity for Beryl will occur when Beryl is moving out to sea after it's landfall in extreme N Florida or S Georgia.
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We are gathered here today...
Member Since: July 7, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5690
1919. WxLogic
I do believe NHC should had stayed with the earlier track they had @11PM yesterday (being a bit further S). I would adjust the track S by 20 to 50 NM.
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4976
BULLETIN
POST-TROPICAL CYCLONE BUD ADVISORY NUMBER 23
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL EP022012
800 AM PDT SAT MAY 26 2012

...BUD DEGENERATES TO A REMNANT LOW...


SUMMARY OF 800 AM PDT...1500 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...20.6N 105.8W
ABOUT 15 MI...25 KM NNW OF CABO CORRIENTES MEXICO
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...30 MPH...45 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...N OR 350 DEGREES AT 3 MPH...6 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...1007 MB...29.74 INCHES
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

I agree, although I think we should begin to see further organization sooner today rather than later.


It's also going to hit warmer waters and it's going to become more tropical in nature
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6535
Quoting CybrTeddy:


Likely a contributing factor as to why we see the convection dying off. That trough provided energy for thunderstorms to build up, even in the face of higher shear. It is likely to me that Beryl will try to again later tonight to build convection then intensify.

I agree, although I think we should begin to see further organization sooner today rather than later.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Disconnecting itself from the trough to its east.



Likely a contributing factor as to why we see the convection dying off. That trough provided energy for thunderstorms to build up, even in the face of higher shear. It is likely to me that Beryl will try to again later tonight to build convection then intensify.
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Beryl is looking really weak, hardly any rainfall with it at all right now. It could come back, but the presence of the upper low is very inhibiting right now, even more so than anticipated. It is strange that it flared up as it did last night so briefly then came back down. Oh well, I do think it will regain some activity before reaching Florida.


I also believe there exists some greater chance of it going farther south than currently anticipated. Models have a hard time handling unusual movements like this and tend to have a bias with these type of situations. If any of you remember hurricane Jeanne then you might understand why I say that. I don't believe Beryl will track in the direction that Jeanne did, however, a more further south track seems possible. I'm still thinking north Florida, but Georgia seems quite unlikely regardless of the models. The strength of that high tells me northeast Florida between Jacksonville and Orlando seems most likely.
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almost as stacked asthe miami heat


850 mb


700mb


500mb


200mb
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6535
Quoting WxLogic:


They've cancelled Flights before... but good chance they'll check it out. Is holding itself so far.


I agree. Too close to the coast on a big holiday weekend for them to cancel the recon...
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Disconnecting itself from the trough to its east.

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1910. yqt1001
Quoting CybrTeddy:
Dang, 1902. beat me to the punch.


;D
Member Since: November 19, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 1286
What? the Doc hasn't made any blog yet?
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not as good
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6535
Quoting yqt1001:
Andrea anyone?



Beryl:


2007 may end up a good analogue considering the fact we've compared Beryl to both Andrea and Beryl now. :P

I was starting to think the same thing actually. They look similar and Beryl is located in a very similar location.
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look at the smoke from the fires in the andrea pics,pretty cool!!
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Dang, 1902. beat me to the punch.
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I predict a landfall near the south side of Cumberland Island, GA.
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I wouldn't call it 'pulling' an Alberto, more or so 'being' an Andrea.

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1902. yqt1001
Andrea anyone?



Beryl:


2007 may end up a good analogue considering the fact we've compared Beryl to both Andrea and Beryl now. :P
Member Since: November 19, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 1286
keep in mind that beryl isnt even over 26 c water

Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6535
Quoting StormJunkie:


And one more...Folly Beach, SC

When's recon supposed to go in?

18Z (2:00 p.m. EDT).
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Quoting AussieStorm:
Here is a few live streaming cams.

Myrtle Beach, SC

Kiawah Island,SC


Topsail Island, NC



Nags Head, NC


And one more...Folly Beach, SC

When's recon supposed to go in?
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 16827
1898. 7544
looks like beryl is moving more south than west this am but still having my coffee what u think
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1897. WxLogic
Quoting reedzone:


They wont scrub it when it's already designated Beryl. Recon will be in it this afternoon, we'll have a better idea on what this system is going through.


They've cancelled Flights before... but good chance they'll check it out. Is holding itself so far.
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4976
Despite little convection, Beryl is gradually becoming more tropical. I expect it to continue in that direction as it moves over increasingly warm waters and fires more convection.

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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Those 'popcorn' cells around the circulation will not release enough heat to help this transition into a Tropical Storm.

You'll actually be able to see recon in Beryl later if it's not scrubbed.



They wont scrub it when it's already designated Beryl. Recon will be in it this afternoon, we'll have a better idea on what this system is going through.
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oh i think the eastern pacific may be trying to spin up another storm soon
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Those 'popcorn' cells around the circulation will not release enough heat to help this transition into a Tropical Storm.

You'll actually be able to see recon in Beryl later if it's not scrubbed.

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Now this is a thought umm!

SUBTROPICAL STORM BERYL DISCUSSION NUMBER 2
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL022012
500 AM EDT SAT MAY 26 2012


OVERNIGHT THE CENTER OF BERYL HAS SLOWED...AND THE INITIAL MOTION ESTIMATE IS 255/04. AS RIDGING BUILDS NORTH OF THE CYCLONE OVER THE WEEKEND...BERYL SHOULD ACCELERATE TOWARD THE WEST-SOUTHWEST OR
SOUTHWEST TODAY...AND TURN WESTWARD AS THE CENTER APPROACHES THE COAST ON SUNDAY.
AFTER 48 HOURS...THE SPREAD IN THE TRACK GUIDANCE
INCREASES REGARDING HOW FAR INLAND BERYL WILL MOVE AND HOW QUICKLY IT ACCELERATES NORTHEASTWARD AHEAD OF A MID-LATITUDE TROUGH MOVING INTO THE EASTERN UNITED STATES.

THE MODEL SPREAD APPEARS TO BE DUE TO DIFFERENCES IN HOW MUCH BERYL WEAKENS AS IT MOVES INLAND...AS A SHALLOWER WEAKER CYCLONE WILL NOT BE PICKED UP AS
QUICKLY AHEAD OF THE TROUGH. THE GFS AND GFS ENSEMBLE MEAN SHOW MORE WESTWARD PROGRESS...MORE WEAKENING...AND ARE SLOWEST WITH THE NORTHEASTWARD MOTION. AT THE OTHER EXTREME...THE ECMWF DOES NOT
MOVE BERYL AS FAR INLAND...MAINTAINS A DEEPER CYCLONE...AND ACCELERATES IT NORTHEASTWARD MUCH FASTER. LATE IN THE PERIOD THE NHC FORECAST IS BETWEEN THESE TWO SCENARIOS BUT REMAINS SLOWER THAN
THE TVCA CONSENSUS AND NEAR THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE GUIDANCE ENVELOPE.


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1891. WxLogic
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Insane photo from last night.



Nice
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4976
1890. WxLogic
Well... not surprised. Currently S of the next forecast point. The question would be... would it continue that trend or not (which will depend on the strength of the blocking High to it's N).

Currently... as per RAP. The 588DM Height holding Beryl in place should start to get erode by 01Z (or about 9PM ET) tonight. Good chance that it will have more of a SW component to its motion for the time being.
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4976
Gmorning. Im planning a camping trip to the coast in a few weeks. Thank you Beryl for reminding me that we should pack a weather radio and a cheap low power cell phone.

It looks rather naked and spindly this morning. I do hope the convection increases and it manages to bring rain inland and not just over water.

Ps. Someone from the wiki crew needs to edit the disambiguation page for Tropical Storms named Beryl. I would but I'm on an my phone.
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Remember if this storm builds stronger convection, not only will it get stronger, it will become more of a flood threat.
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Insane photo from last night.


Scott MacPartland took that awesome photo.
Member Since: September 30, 2007 Posts: 9 Comments: 15937
Quoting GeorgiaStormz:
Beryl looks like Alberto


It's alberto's sister
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Hi all......

wow! looks like a busy H season this year!
Hoping Beryl brings us some rain... gonna be a hot one on the FL Panhandle!
Everyone stay safe!
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(Sub)Tropical Storm 02L

------------------------------------------------- -------------------------------
Date : 26 MAY 2012 Time : 124500 UTC
Lat : 32:07:15 N Lon : 75:55:11 W


CI# /Pressure/ Vmax
2.0 /1008.6mb/ 30.0kt


Rapid Dissipation Flag : OFF
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Insane photo from last night.

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Structure wise Beryl is getting more organized.All it needs is convection.
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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.