97L in Western Caribbean Still a Threat to Develop

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:58 PM GMT on October 02, 2013

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A tropical disturbance (Invest 97L) over the Western Caribbean is moving to the northwest at 10 mph and is generating heavy rains over the Cayman Islands and Western Cuba. Grand Cayman Island had picked up 2.32" (59 mm) of rain as of 9:30 am EDT on Wednesday. Satellite loops show that 97L has a modest area of heavy thunderstorms that have increased substantially in areal coverage and in intensity since Tuesday, but there is little rotation apparent. Cayman Islands radar also does not show any rotation to the echoes, but there are several prominent low-level bands of heavy rain. The storm has low wind shear of 5 - 10 knots to work with, as well as an upper-air anticyclone aloft that is providing good ventilation above it. Dry air is over the Yucatan Peninsula and Gulf of Mexico, as seen on water vapor satellite loops, and this dry air is slowing development. Ocean temperatures are a very warm 29°C (84°F). An Air Force hurricane hunter flight is scheduled for Wednesday afternoon.


Figure 1. Wind forecast for 2 pm EDT Saturday October 5, 2013, from runs of the GFS model done six hours apart. The more recent run, initialized at 06Z (2 am EDT) on Wednesday, October 2 (left panel) predicts that 97L will have top winds below 35 knots (40 mph, light orange colors). This run showed the center of 97L making landfall in the Florida Panhandle about 120 miles east of Alabama late Saturday afternoon.The run initialized six hours earlier, at 00Z (right panel), showed a stronger storm, with top winds of 40 - 45 knots (46 - 52 mph.) This run showed the center of 97L making landfall near the Alabama/Florida border Saturday night. The images were generated using our wundermap with the model layer turned on.

Forecast for 97L: development into at least a tropical depression likely
Wind shear is expected to remain low on Wednesday, then steadily increase to the moderate range on Thursday, then to the high range on Friday, according to the latest SHIPS model forecast. On Wednesday night, 97L will cross the northeastern tip of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, bringing 3 - 6" of rain to the peninsula and to Western Cuba. Passage over the Yucatan will act to disrupt the storm. The atmosphere will grow drier as 97L moves northwards over the Gulf of Mexico on Thursday and Friday, and the drier air combined with increasing wind shear will retard development, making rapid intensification unlikely. A trough of low pressure and an associated cold front will be moving through Louisiana on Saturday, and the associated upper-level westerly winds will be able to turn 97L more to the northeast as it approaches the coast on Friday. The GFS model develops 97L into a tropical storm, and predicts landfall will occur along the Florida Panhandle. The European model, which does not develop 97L into a tropical storm, is farther west, taking the storm over Eastern Louisiana. In their 8 am EDT Wednesday Tropical Weather Outlook, NHC gave 97L 2-day odds of development of 40%, and 5-day odds of 50%. I give a 30% chance 97L will be Tropical Storm Karen with top winds of 40 - 60 mph at landfall between Louisiana and the Florida Panhandle on Saturday, a 5% chance it will be stronger, and a 65% chance it will be a tropical depression or mere tropical disturbance. Heavy rains of 3 - 6" can be expected falling the coast from Louisiana to the Florida Panhandle on Saturday, even if 97L does not develop into a tropical depression.


Figure 2. MODIS satellite image of 97L, taken at 12:30 pm EDT on October 2, 2013. Image credit: NASA.

Tropical Storm Jerry in the Central Atlantic no threat
Tropical Storm Jerry continues to slowly wander over the Central Atlantic, far from land. Jerry is not a threat to any land areas.

Jeff Masters

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My final guess for tonight is Karen at 5am EDT. We'll see how that goes. If recon isn't flying (they're scheduled to...but haven't departed yet) then probably later on tomorrow morning.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32692
2165. GatorWX
Quoting 2151. seer2012:


So how much of an effect is the mid-level shear going to have on the steering, if any? It seems like I have been seeing mid-level vorticity offset in the direction of shear when a system is just getting organized.


Idk, what are you thinking?
Member Since: January 1, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3797
2164. FOREX
Quoting 2160. HurricaneAndre:
HH WHERE ARE YOUUUUUUUUUUIUUUUUIUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!!!!!!????? ?


might have cancelled as ragged as its starting to look.
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Quoting 2154. whitewabit:


I think land interaction is effecting it as much if not more then sheer on it west side ..
I think it's the dry air causing more damage, but I'm not 100%
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Quoting 2151. seer2012:


So how much of an effect is the mid-level shear going to have on the steering, if any? It seems like I have been seeing mid-level vorticity offset in the direction of shear when a system is just getting organized.


It won't have effect on the steering - kind of lost why mid-level sheer was shown, as this does not seem to be having an impact on this system.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Some come to laugh their past away,
Some come to make it just one more day.

Which ever way your pleasure tends,
If you plant ice, you're going to harvest wind.


Miss you GROTHAR!
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HH WHERE ARE YOUUUUUUUUUUIUUUUUIUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!!!!!!????? ?
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2159. GatorWX


Cozumel
Member Since: January 1, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3797
Quoting 2154. whitewabit:


I think land interaction is effecting it as much if not more then sheer on it west side ..


Perhaps - but none more than what one would see for a storm passing through the straights.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24548
2156. beell
Ruth rode on my motorbike directly back of me.
Hit a bump at 65 and rode on,
Ruthlessly
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Quoting 2138. scottsvb:

To be fair, he did say "probably", lol.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32692
2154. whitewabit (Mod)
Quoting 2142. CybrTeddy:
If this is "not looking so hot" then I'm not entirely sure what is. Ingrid at peak didn't look as well organized. Established outflow on all quadrants (perhaps a little eroded on the north due to shear) expanding outwards under an ULAC, building convection into sunset and overnight hours. I don't think 97L will become anything beyond a 35-45kt TS, but this isn't disorganized on satellite. It's what's on the surface that matters.


I think land interaction is effecting it as much if not more then sheer on it west side ..
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Although we hope it will be a weak Hurricane on landfall, we still remember....

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Quoting 2147. Terradad:
Some folks look for answers,
others look for fights.

Some folks up in treetops,
just love to see the sights.

I don't trust in nothing,
but I know it'll come out right.



I rather liked your first version :)

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting 2123. GatorWX:
You ever get the mowing done?





So how much of an effect is the mid-level shear going to have on the steering, if any? It seems like I have been seeing mid-level vorticity offset in the direction of shear when a system is just getting organized.
Member Since: July 30, 2012 Posts: 4 Comments: 614
2150. GatorWX
I guess when all you have is your anemic intellect... belittling is the best you have...

Member Since: January 1, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3797
2149. FOREX
Quoting 2131. stormpetrol:
Folks on the Gulf Coast be prepared, potentially dangerous cyclone developing very near the Yucatan Channel as I write this, It doesn't have to be a major to cause serious problems , just saying... Stay safe!


looks like its falling apart.
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Quoting 2142. CybrTeddy:
If this is "not looking so hot" then I'm not entirely sure what is. Ingrid at peak didn't look as well organized. Established outflow on all quadrants (perhaps a little eroded on the north due to shear) expanding outwards under an ULAC, building convection into sunset and overnight hours. I don't think 97L will become anything beyond a 35-45kt TS, but this isn't disorganized on satellite. It's what's on the surface that matters.
the surface is the most important thing
Member Since: July 31, 2013 Posts: 0 Comments: 925
Some folks look for answers,
others look for fights.

Some folks up in treetops,
just love to see the sights.

I don't trust in nothing,
but I know it'll come out right.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting 2139. wxgeek723:


Pat aren't you in like your 40s? How would you even know MGMT exists?

J/k :)


Only 40's - wow, that'll be taken as a compliment!
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2145. GatorWX
Some of you try way toooo hard hard to prove others wrong. It's really humorous how some get their kicks..
Member Since: January 1, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3797
Quoting 2138. scottsvb:


Lol. This is pretty funny.
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 17 Comments: 10284
Going to get plenty of rain regardless. Geez we have had so much rain already in our area of Gulf Shores / Pensacola / Destin area. Started raining early June, didn't seem to stop until early September.

More of the same coming, looks like... Hope that front picks it up and scoots it up the E. Coast quickly.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
If this is "not looking so hot" then I'm not entirely sure what is. Ingrid at peak didn't look as well organized. Established outflow on all quadrants (perhaps a little eroded on the north due to shear) expanding outwards under an ULAC, building convection into sunset and overnight hours. I don't think 97L will become anything beyond a 35-45kt TS, but this isn't disorganized on satellite. It's what's on the surface that matters.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24548
Quoting 2138. scottsvb:


maybe tomorrow afternoon . . .
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Quoting 2112. SuperStorm093:
97L not looking so hot, hey stormstrackerscott hows that TS coming?
Stormtracker Scott doesn't get nearly the credit he deserves. The man is a saint with children and a genius with food additives.
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Quoting 158. StormTrackerScott:


It's about as closed as it gets and yes this is a TS right now. Recon will probably confirm that this afternoon.
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2137. GatorWX
Quoting 2119. weathermanwannabe:
Some of you have been on here all day.....Get some rest.
Just learned I have to drop one of the kids off at school in the am.......See Yall in the morning.

Let's see what happens in the am.


Night, nice red btw!!
Member Since: January 1, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3797
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Quoting 2117. LAbonbon:


The criteria were posted earlier, it seemed to give it more credibility. Maybe the skeptic (me) has been converted a bit...


Nah, I am not a fan of it at all. It is simply a marketing ploy, and was done solely by the TWC without input from any other meteorological organizations (some for good reason). Its a marketing ploy.
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2134. GatorWX
:) good.
Member Since: January 1, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3797
Quoting 2104. palmpt:


Clearly there is a palatable intellectual capacity above the norm here tonight emboldened by a more focused tropical system discussion. What a pleasure...


Well, obviously the more compact size of 97L has resulted in a more focused blog (sorry couldn't help myself). While I don't think 97L will amount to much (at most a TD or weak Hurricane based on the models), it does make me wonder if the rest of October will be active. After all, let's not forget that the last mayor to strike Pinellas County/Tampa was in mid October (although Cat 3+ hurricanes in this area are very rare). If you want to read a real horror story, check the Phoenix Project, which is a government simulation of a cat 5 hitting Mid-Pinellas.
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2132. GatorWX
I think it's gonna be one of them nights...

On the wings of maybe, downy birds of prey
Kind of makes me feel sometimes, didn't have to go
But as the eagle leaves the nest, it's got so far to go


Into the GOM it shall see

Member Since: January 1, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3797
Folks on the Gulf Coast be prepared, potentially dangerous cyclone developing very near the Yucatan Channel as I write this, It doesn't have to be a major to cause serious problems , just saying... Stay safe!
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2130. palmpt
Quoting 2120. avthunder:
Makes me miss Gro more when the discussions are civilized and even intellectual. It's not as ugly as it was when he left in frustration/disgust.


Bet he's reading... Can't resist...
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Quoting 2112. SuperStorm093:
97L not looking so hot, hey stormstrackerscott hows that TS coming?



ahh don't get him started, he said TS this morning, afternoon, night...even said it was almost a hurricane.
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It's getting sheared to it's north which is pushing the dry air inwards towards the circulation, and the forming low level center is west of the main convection. At this point in time, there are more inhibiting factors than factors going for it. I think no Karen for tonight or early tomorrow, maybe tomorrow afternoon.
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shear forecast ahead not so hot...


But 97L is at 70% for tropical storm development and is looking pretty good so far but it still hasn't hit the really dry air. A northeast turn would improve its chances with all that moisture ahead of it.
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^ Get that mowin' done son :)
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Quoting 2123. GatorWX:
You ever get the mowing done?



Yeah did a quick trim-up with my weedwacker too
Member Since: July 31, 2013 Posts: 0 Comments: 925
2123. GatorWX
You ever get the mowing done?



Member Since: January 1, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3797
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Quoting 2115. cat6band:


Keep....is that the latest NAM?


NAM

Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 17 Comments: 10284
Quoting 2104. palmpt:


Clearly there is a palatable intellectual capacity above the norm here tonight emboldened by a more focused tropical system discussion. What a pleasure...
Makes me miss Gro more when the discussions are civilized and even intellectual. It's not as ugly as it was when he left in frustration/disgust.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Some of you have been on here all day.....Get some rest.
Just learned I have to drop one of the kids off at school in the am.......See Yall in the morning.

Let's see what happens in the am.
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9372

evening, 97L is looking better than expected this evening.
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Quoting 2113. daddyjames:


Hard to take it seriously regardless what time of year it is.


The criteria were posted earlier, it seemed to give it more credibility. Maybe the skeptic (me) has been converted a bit...
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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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