Tropical Storm Chris forms; little change to Cuba disturbance; Duluth floods

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:33 PM GMT on June 20, 2012

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Tropical Storm Chris formed Tuesday evening from a extratropical storm that spent enough time over waters of 24 - 26°C to acquire tropical characteristics. Chris is headed eastwards, out to sea, and will not trouble any land areas. Only twice before, in 1887 and 1959, has the third storm of the season formed earlier than this date. Formation of three tropical storms so early in the year is not necessarily a harbinger of an active season; 1959 was close to average, with 12 named storms, 7 hurricanes, and 2 intense hurricanes (average is 11 named storms, 6 hurricanes, and 2 intense hurricanes.) Unusual levels of early season activity in the Caribbean and between Africa and the Lesser Antilles usually portends a very active hurricane season, but this year's storms have not formed in this region. Alberto, Beryl, and Chris all formed off the U.S. East Coast.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of Chris.

Disturbance near Cuba will bring heavy rains to Florida
An area of low pressure and heavy thunderstorms centered just south of Cuba has changed little since Tuesday, and is bringing sporadic heavy rains to Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, South Florida, the Southern Bahamas, and Cuba. This disturbance will need to be watched for development as it drifts slowly northwest at about 5 mph and enters the Gulf of Mexico late this week. The disturbance is poorly organized, and has only a modest area of heavy thunderstorms. Wind shear is a moderate to high 15 - 25 knots over the region, and the shear is predicted to remain in the moderate to high range for the next three days along the disturbance's path. Water vapor satellite loops show a region of dry air over the Southern Gulf of Mexico; strong upper-level winds out of the northwest are bringing some of this dry air into the vicinity of the disturbance, which is interfering with development. NHC is giving the disturbance a 20% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Friday morning. As the disturbance reaches the waters off the southwest coast of Florida this weekend, a strong trough of low pressure pushing off of the U.S. East Coast will be capable of grabbing the storm and accelerating it to the northeast. This is the solution of the GFS model, which takes the storm across Florida on Sunday, and into the waters off the coast of South Carolina by Monday, with the disturbance developing into a tropical or subtropical storm off the coast of South Carolina. None of the other reliable computer models is showing development of the disturbance into a tropical depression. I think it is unlikely that heavy rains from this disturbance will affect Louisiana and Texas, but it will bring heavy rains to Southwest Florida and Cuba over the next five days.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of the tropical disturbance near Cuba.


Figure 3. Rainfall for the 5-day period ending at 8am EDT Monday as predicted by NOAA's Hydrometeorological Prediction Center. Amounts in excess of five inches (orange colors) are predicted for Southwest Florida, with an area of ten inches (yellow colors) just off the coast.

Major flooding in Duluth, Minnesota
A serious flood emergency is occurring in Duluth, Minnesota. A series of "training" thunderstorms that all passed over the same region have dumped 4 - 5 inches of rain over a wide swath of Northern Minnesota overnight and early this morning. Nearly 8 inches of rain fell in the Denfeld area of western Duluth. This is more rain than fell in the city's previous worst flood on record, which occurred August 20, 1972. Major flooding is occurring, and only emergency travel is recommended in the city due to flooded roads. A flash flood warning from the Duluth National Weather Service issued at 7am CDT said this:

We cannot stress what a major threat this is for the city of Duluth
and along the North Shore. Aging infrastructure will also play a
part in the flood threat... especially on the hillside. Highway 61
remains closed in spots with washouts... overflowing streams and
rivers...washed out culverts and washed out roads. Just because you
might be able to travel to a destination now... does not mean you
will make it in one to two hours. This is how fast this situation
may deteriorate as more rainfall moves in from the west. There is
the potential for several more inches of rain today and the utility
system and the saturated ground cannot take much more rain.


According to wunderground's weather historian, Christopher C. Burt, the all-time 24 hour precipitation record for Duluth is 5.79" on 8/22 - 8/23 1978; 4.14" was recorded on Tuesday at the airport.


Figure 4. Radar-estimated rainfall from the Duluth, Minnesota radar.

Jeff Masters

storm damage June 19 (CythiaSue)
there is another car buried on the other side of the road. This is just some of the storm damage from a 4 am rain and thunderstorm
storm damage June 19

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2389. 900MB
Wow! Chris is what I call a..

Bizarrocane!

Really a hurricane at 38N? In June?

My early season prediction called for unusual activity in the Atlantic, but this is just plain bizarre!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2388. JLPR2
Quoting Bobbyweather:

Yeah, at first.
But the NHC has updated the ATCF to up the wind speeds to 65 and 70 mph for the last 18 hours. :)


Which proves they didn't want to, but had to update the file when they noticed Chris kept getting better and it wasn't a temporal thing.

Well I'll be back later today, wont wait for the 11am update, already know it is a cane. XD

Later...
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Key West:


A WELL ALIGNED SURFACE TO MID LEVEL TROUGH AND ASSOCIATED
CONVECTION CONTINUES TO MIGRATE NORTHWESTWARD THROUGH THE YUCATAN
CHANNEL INTO THE GULF OF MEXICO. THE FLORIDA KEYS REMAIN ON THE
EASTERN SIDE OF THIS DEEP TROUGH...WITHIN AN EXCEEDINGLY MOIST
AIRMASS DUE TO ADVECTION OF DEEP MOISTURE ON LOW TO MIDDLE LEVEL
CONFLUENT SOUTHEASTERLY FLOW. THE 12Z MORNING SOUNDING AT KEY WEST
ILLUSTRATED A GENTLE TO MODERATE SOUTH SOUTHEAST FLOW FROM THE
SURFACE UP TO 600 MB...WITH COLUMNAR PWAT (PRECIPITABLE WATER) AT A
STAGGERING 2.45 INCHES!...WHICH IS NEAR THE HIGHEST AMOUNT AVAILABLE
IN THE CLIMATOLOGICAL RECORD FOR LATE JUNE AT KEY WEST.
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I'm not going to lie, Chris is a beautiful storm.

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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Pro meteorologist regarding the ECMWF...

"...the ECMWF just had an implementation this week: cycle 38r1. Some (minor-ish) changes to the DA, small changes to convection (entrainment), changes to cloud ice fall speed/ice supersaturation/melting/freezing timescale, and a change related to dealiasing of the PG term. There were also some minor changes to the EPS (mostly in the hindcast dataset for callibration, but also to some of the initial perturbations).

I have no idea how these changes would impact TC genesis/track/intensity prediction. According to their "scorecard" based on the pre-implementation testing, the tropics should be improved quite a bit relative to the previous version of the system. "


and the GFS is supposed to be better, and the CMC is supposed to be on crack.
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9720
Quoting washingtonian115:
Scary results.
21% Major hurricane this far out does not seem like something I want to deal with swirling around in the GOM.
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2383. MoeWest
I wonder what it is like for a shark to swim in the eye of a hurricane...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Pro meteorologist regarding the ECMWF...

"...the ECMWF just had an implementation this week: cycle 38r1. Some (minor-ish) changes to the DA, small changes to convection (entrainment), changes to cloud ice fall speed/ice supersaturation/melting/freezing timescale, and a change related to dealiasing of the PG term. There were also some minor changes to the EPS (mostly in the hindcast dataset for callibration, but also to some of the initial perturbations).

I have no idea how these changes would impact TC genesis/track/intensity prediction. According to their "scorecard" based on the pre-implementation testing, the tropics should be improved quite a bit relative to the previous version of the system. "
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2381. Patrap
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 420 Comments: 127550
Quoting Dragod66:
wow!... I went to bed last night kinda mad because it was the best looking tropical storm i had ever seen and they didnt even upgrade it to 70mph... now I wake up and go holy cow how is this beast still going! Just another reason why I love the tropics you never know! :D

Yeah, at first.
But the NHC has updated the ATCF to up the wind speeds to 65 and 70 mph for the last 18 hours. :)
Member Since: September 7, 2006 Posts: 89 Comments: 2653
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
From another forum...


"Out of the 51 00z ECMWF ensembles, 54% strengthen this area to TS, 42% to Hurricane, and 21% to major hurricane."
Scary results.
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Quoting Dragod66:
wow!... I went to bed last night kinda mad because it was the best looking tropical storm i had ever seen and they didnt even upgrade it to 70mph... now I wake up and go holy cow how is this beast still going! Just another reason why I love the tropics you never know! :D


That is amazing and so far north too.
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Quoting Dragod66:
wow!... I went to bed last night kinda mad because it was the best looking tropical storm i had ever seen and they didnt even upgrade it to 70mph... now I wake up and go holy cow how is this beast still going! Just another reason why I love the tropics you never know! :D
thats the same thing i was telling my self that is the best looking tropical storm i have ever seen EVER and if they upgraded to hurricane status that would make my day hehe
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Quoting CybrTeddy:


Hurricane Rina probably.

If you want to see active, imagine if the ECMWF is accurate.


I think the CMC would get the blog even more active with a 975mb C1/C2 hurricane making landfall in Texas (IN JUNE)
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morning guys I see NW Carib AOI has not gotten any better still see multi-circulation I see 4 circulations one between Isle of youth and cozumel, one in the GOH, one on the N coast of Yucatan, and one that is dying just W of Keys N of W tip of Cuba
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 11021
So much for the theory that Cat 1 hurricanes only form over 26C water. Chris is over 19C to 21C water...

Upper atmosphere matters more than water temperature. Always has.
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
Quoting AtHomeInTX:


Wow! Is my blog messed up. The one I posted just updated. Although I don't know why it changed. The ones from the other post were from earlier this morning and yesterday. Going to hit send again hope it goes through.
That's ok, quite frankly I don't know where this is heading as the CMC, GFS, and Euro models are all very reliable models.
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2372. wxmod
A thousand miles of heavy smog in China today. Modis satellite photo.

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From another forum...


"Out of the 51 00z ECMWF ensembles, 54% strengthen this area to TS, 42% to Hurricane, and 21% to major hurricane."
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Quoting windshear1993:
whens the last time the blog been this active?


beryl
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9720
Quoting CybrTeddy:


Hurricane Rina probably.

If you want to see active, imagine if the ECMWF is accurate.
yea probally would exceed 5000
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
wow!... I went to bed last night kinda mad because it was the best looking tropical storm i had ever seen and they didnt even upgrade it to 70mph... now I wake up and go holy cow how is this beast still going! Just another reason why I love the tropics you never know! :D
Member Since: August 24, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 604
HPC I guess this is why they changed it.

UPDATED PRELIM...
THE MORNING BLEND WAS UPDATED BY REPLACING YESTERDAYS 12Z ECMWF
ENSEMBLE MEAN WITH TODAYS 00Z RUN...AND ELIMINATING THE 00Z GEFS
MEAN FROM THE DAY 3-4 FORECAST. BOTH THE 06Z GFS AND 00Z ECMWF
ENSEMBLE MEAN CAME IN A BIT SLOWER THAN THEIR PREVIOUS RUNS WITH
EJECTING ENERGY ACROSS THE NORTHWESTERN CONUS DAYS 5-6...GIVING A
BIT MORE CREDITABILITY TO THE 00Z ECMWF SOLUTION.
HOWEVER...SIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCES STILL DEVELOP AMONG THE
OPERATIONAL GUIDANCE IN FLATTENING OUT THE AMPLIFIED FLOW ACROSS
THE WESTERN U.S./PLAINS AND SETTING UP A TROUGH OVER THE EASTERN
U.S. LATE IN THE FORECAST PERIOD. THE GEFS MEAN/ECMWF ENSEMBLE
MEANS REMAIN IN GOOD AGREEMENT...SO WILL CONTINUE TO RELY ON THEM
FOR DAYS 5-7. THE UPDATED CHANGES RESULTED IN MINIMAL CHANGES TO
THE MORNING GRAPHICS.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 676
Quoting CybrTeddy:


I stand corrected.

Chris is the farthest North June forming hurricane.

The fact that Chris even became a hurricane is interesting imo. What are the SSTs there? 21C?
Member Since: September 7, 2006 Posts: 89 Comments: 2653
Quoting windshear1993:
whens the last time the blog been this active?
The tornadoes in KY. Or Beryl before landfall cant remember which was greater.
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Computer models don't have a clue on the Cuban disturbance.

GFS mostly ignores it, but takes it out to Atlantic seaboard with possible TD or weak TS status later.

Euro has a Cat 1 Hurricane into Florida.

Canadian has a large Cat 2 Hurricane into CORPUS CHRISTI in the opposite direction.



the epic model fail.
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
Quoting windshear1993:
whens the last time the blog been this active?
Yesterday lol
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Quoting windshear1993:
whens the last time the blog been this active?


Hurricane Rina probably.

If you want to see active, imagine if the ECMWF is accurate.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23570
Quoting redwagon:


It looks crazy but the L activity seems to be winning the race with the H ridge slowly coming down. In fact, it looks like the L in OK and the GOM one are meeting, going to split the Ridge in half.


Weakness. Never know we may have a 1-2 punch in the GOM
Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9628
Quoting RitaEvac:


Lots going on in the GOM, moisture, clouds, and rain into S TX, models weren't calling for this, so already they are on the chopping block. And a massive heat ridge that's gonna cook TX, we'll see.


It looks crazy but the L activity seems to be winning the race with the H ridge slowly coming down. In fact, it looks like the L in OK and the GOM one are meeting, going to split the Ridge in half.
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whens the last time the blog been this active?
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Quoting Jeff9631:
Folks it looks like Central FL could be the future target of Debby! Tampa could be in for a big one!
..Well glad I never put back out the lawn furniture after Beryl...just in case this would happen...lol
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Quoting Bobbyweather:

Vince is the farthest northeastern hurricane, not north.
1971 - Hurricane #2 became a hurricane at 46N, the highest latitude a tropical storm has been upgraded in the Atlantic.


I stand corrected.

Chris is the farthest North June forming hurricane.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23570
This is where the heart of the ridge will be this weekend

Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9628
Quoting CybrTeddy:
Chris is the farthest north forming hurricane, Vince was declared a Category 1 at 34.2N 18.6W, Chris was declared at 405N, 439W, 6 degrees higher north.

Vince is the farthest northeastern hurricane, not north.
1971 - Hurricane #2 became a hurricane at 46°N, the highest latitude a tropical storm has been upgraded in the Atlantic.
Member Since: September 7, 2006 Posts: 89 Comments: 2653
Like Levi said. Until a COC develops no models can be very accurate. It looked like one was trying to develop SW of Key West but I do not see that defined, lots of T storms but no COC, just the trough.

The gulf is full of activity this morning. Right now I would not trust any models past 24 hours. Just too much uncertainty.
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2353. JLPR2
And to think I actually thought Chris peaked at 4am. O.o
A hurricane, I had said I wouldn't be surprised if it happened, but I am.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:


All hurricanes are 'hers' to me..
I like to imagine their the same gender as their name suggest...
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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


idk, do you have a google plus account?
You could make the images public.
someonee before was talkin about photo bucket, i dont know how that works
I just signed up for photo but the problem with that is I have to pay for images with res higher than 4000x3000. Mine are 4680x3072. So let me check Google plus.
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Chris is the farthest north forming hurricane, Vince was declared a Category 1 at 34.2N 18.6W, Chris was declared at 405N, 439W, 6 degrees higher north.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23570


Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9628
Quoting GTcooliebai:
Hold on one sec. why is the HPC charts different from the one AtHomeInTX and Hurricane1216 is showing? Now I'm really confused.


Wow! Is my blog messed up. The one I posted just updated. Although I don't know why it changed. The ones from the other post were from earlier this morning and yesterday. Going to hit send again hope it goes through.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 676
Quoting Bobbyweather:


LOL

IMO Beryl will be upgraded to hurricane status in post-season analysis.


All hurricanes are 'hers' to me..
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23570
NOUS42 KNHC 201245
WEATHER RECONNAISSANCE FLIGHTS
CARCAH, NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER, MIAMI, FL.
0845 AM EDT WED JUN 20 2012
SUBJECT: TROPICAL CYCLONE PLAN OF THE DAY (TCPOD)
VALID 21/1100Z TO 22/1100Z JUN 2012
TCPOD NUMBER.....12-033

I. ATLANTIC REQUIREMENTS
1. NEGATIVE RECONNAISSANCE REQUIREMENTS.
2. OUTLOOK FOR SUCCEEDING DAY: A LOW LEVEL INVEST
AT 22/1800Z NEAR 24.0N 89.0W
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Quoting redwagon:
I found it looking out of my window. There are rain bands coming in from the SE *that aren't supposed to be there*. The monster ridging was supposed to take care of that.


Lots more moisture than anticipated you say?
Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9628
Quoting hurricanehunter27:
Ah yes let me create a album for you guys and upload it. Anyone know a good image sharing site that can support a large amount of photos without paying? Each image is quite large about 1.2MB.


idk, do you have a google plus account?
You could make the images public.
someonee before was talkin about photo bucket, i dont know how that works
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9720
Quoting jpsb:
A little home grown storm in the GoM? Guess I need to start paying attention. Hopefully West/Central Texas will get some badly needed rain. Typically these early GoM storms are mostly rain events and fairly small in size. Lets hope that pattern continues. I am still repairing Ike damage so no hurricanes please, and thank you.


You're in San Leon, right?

I don't think anythings going to come of this disturbance.
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Quoting ncstorm:


The CMC was showing two separate lows in earlier runs along with the Euro..the Euro still shows two lows while the CMC dosent..I personally think we will be looking at two storms..Debby and Ernesto one going west and one going NE
Thank you
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Well, since everyone is talking about Chris and all, I would like to say:

Happy Solstice!
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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


LOL, thats funny because i have always envisioned you as a woman because of Rita in you name.

You should have called your RitaEvacMan


lol
Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9628
There's another reason Chris was upgraded to a hurricane - the T numbers.
CHRIS 03L T4.0/4.0 21/1145Z Atlantic

And although ADT numbers are low, the raw number is 4.5, corresponding to upper Category 1 strength (I think)
UW - CIMSS
ADVANCED DVORAK TECHNIQUE
ADT-Version 8.1.3
Tropical Cyclone Intensity Algorithm

----- Current Analysis -----
Date : 21 JUN 2012 Time : 124500 UTC
Lat : 40:44:20 N Lon : 43:21:01 W


CI# /Pressure/ Vmax
3.0 / 987.6mb/ 45.0kt


Final T# Adj T# Raw T#
3.0 3.4 4.5

Estimated radius of max. wind based on IR : 27 km

Center Temp : 3.1C Cloud Region Temp : -45.9C

Scene Type : EYE

Positioning Method : RING/SPIRAL COMBINATION

Ocean Basin : ATLANTIC
Dvorak CI > MSLP Conversion Used : ATLANTIC

Tno/CI Rules : Constraint Limits : 0.5T/hour
Weakening Flag : OFF
Rapid Dissipation Flag : OFF

C/K/Z MSLP Estimate Inputs :
- Average 34 knot radii : 67km
- Environmental MSLP : 1010mb

Satellite Viewing Angle : 57.1 degrees

************************************************* *
Member Since: September 7, 2006 Posts: 89 Comments: 2653

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About

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.