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Gert and Franklin

By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 6:47 PM GMT on July 24, 2005

Tropical Storm Gert formed last night, marking the earliest hurricane season ever to have seven named storms. The previous record year was 1936, when the seventh storm formed on August 7. Gert has warm water underneath and good outflow above, but not enough room to do much intensification. A look at the latest SST plot for the Gulf of Mexico shows the warm 29 - 30C water in the southern Gulf under Gert, and also the cold water wake of Hurricane Emily.

The winds of slow-moving Category 2 and higher hurricanes often stir up cooler water from deep below the ocean surface, cooling the surface waters in their wake by 1 - 3C or more. However, the winds of Gert are only 40 mph, and not likely to produce a cold water wake of their own. The sudden stoppage of Emily's cold water wake just before the coast of Mexico south of Brownsville is an artifact of the technique used to make the SST map--data from more than one day is combined. The plot says data from 7/19 through 7/21 were used, and Emily hit Mexico on July 20, so undoubtedly the data near the coast where Emily hit came from July 19, before the storm crossed the coast. The reason multiple days are used to generate these composites it that the satellite making the measurement needs cloud-free conditions to be able to measure the sea surface temperature. The area near the coast of Mexico was no doubt cloud covered on July 20 and 21, so data from July 19 was used. The reason no cold water wake is seen from where Emily approached the Yucatan as a Category 4 hurricane is probably because the storm was moving too quickly to stir up much cold water from down deep. Emily's forward speed was 20 mph then, and slowed down to zero when it approached Brownsville.

Turning our attention to Tropical Storm Franklin, we see a classic example of a sheared system. The low-level center of rotation is almost completely exposed, with just one glob of thunderstorms clinging to the storm's south side. Strong upper level winds blowing from the northwest are ripping away any convection that tries to fire up on the north side of Franklin. The shear is expected to continue for at least the next day, and Franklin should continue heading out to sea and probably weaken further.

Out in the rest of the tropics, nothing eye-catching is happening today, so we may be in for a quiet week for a change!

Jeff Masters

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

Reader Comments

I think I will put pictures I took from the two different house's I was in that were damaged by Frederic and Ivan..one got burried in pine trees, 3 went through roof.The other in Ivan had my 40 x 15 ft porch opened like a tin can..
But i do do alot of storm watching here during are summer storm pattern or when a hurricane comes near or hits,like last year Iwas out in hurricane jeanne for ten hours taking small brakes like for lunch and a cup of water,I saw a tornado for the third time here and I dont go storm chasing eather,though thats not surprising because florida gets more tornado touchdowns then any other state but most are on the weaker side.
503. Alec
any pasture. their all over the place.
504. Alec
i like reptiles only if they dont bite my arm off.
I really think that somewhere in Michigan we're causing brownouts.
506. cjnew
oh ok
507. Alec
you mean blowouts?
Well Jedkins, with tornadoes it'slocation location location. A fo/f1 hitting a mobile home park will do more damage than a F% in the middle of nowhere.
509. cjnew
ivan was my worst expirience ever and i was in pc
510. Alec
an F% tornado would be quite a doosy.
511. cjnew
sorry was that random
512. Alec
Jed are you a florida native..or a transplant?
514. Alec
nothins random on here its all open to discussion.
515. cjnew
how do you know i dont type with country slang
We'll F% is on the super secret scale and the REAL severe storms forecast center.
517. Alec
you think well reach post #600 before its all said and done on here? cj you're hilarious :)
longest lived hurricanes...ginger is #1 in the modern era


Longest-lived Atlantic tropical cyclones

Storms which have lived longer than twenty days:

1. Puerto Rico Hurricane in August 1899 lasted 31 days.
2. Hurricane Ginger in September 1971 lasted 27.25 days.
3. Hurricane Inga in September 1969 lasted 24.75 days.
4. Hurricane Kyle in October 2002 and Hurricane Ivan in September 2004 each lasted 22 days.
5. Hurricane Carrie in September 1957 and Storm 9 in September 1893 each lasted 20.75 days.
6. Hurricane Alberto in August 2000 lasted 20.50 days
7. Hurricane Inez in September 1966 lasted 20.25 days.
519. cjnew
well than i'll type my expErience and ya'll can read if ya wanna
520. cjnew
i cant help it its a God given gift (for the religous people)
521. Alec
still think gerts going to top them all off and stall in the central gulf for years.
Thank You!.Rich..will save that!
523. Alec
i was joking the last post. that one guy would come back on here and tell me good.
I better go, but have fun. Gives whole new meaning on hurricane party.
525. Alec
were still having one. Im standing outside waiting for the gales to come.
i had actually forgotten that ivan ended up somehow making its way back ot the gulf after hitting maryland...an amazing storm

527. Alec
ivan did that loop. split off in two and hit louisiana.
528. cjnew
anyways ivan wasnt fun becausehere in pc there was that on feeder band that had so many tornadoes and it kept going over and over us. so we kept getting in and out of our hunker down spot for hours. then we got put under this one tornado warning and the news station put their sky cam in the direction the potential tornado was coming in and as they turned the camera all the sudden there was a massive tornado that was black and scary and believe me when i say its the worst feeling to see your city getting destroyed by a tornado then when they tell ya its headed straight for your house makes it just a tid bit worst but luckly it didnt get near us but thats why ivan was no fun!!!!! all that in 2 whole sentences lol
are there rules against posting images in this blog? just wanted to know if it was acceptable to just post the image on here or if i have to give the link
530. Alec
very good! you were averaging 2.5 words per post
We didn't rich..imagine one week you get Ivan..and the next week he looks to come back for seconds all here on gulf coast were aware he was back..
532. cjnew
sorry bare with the spelling and grammar and where spaces are needed
set up a blog we all come look RICH!
534. cjnew
thank you..........i just tried to read it and it was pretty hard i stink at typing
535. Alec
well if their going to wipe off a certain word i heard earlier i suppose its ok. never seen one on here.
if this is against the TOS, i apologize

537. Alec
well im going to say something: i second that! lol
538. cjnew
my shoulder hurts
539. Alec
hey thats cool how do you do that?
BTW anyone check out the IR loop of Frankie?


now the LLC is moving SW and the convection is moving ESE
541. Alec
then go to the doctor.
542. cjnew
look at lucky little jamaica
alec, just some html code

you copy and paste the image link and put it inside this code ""
544. Alec
its shear, if not a triple eye wall choking off the convection. lol
i still can't believe how jamaica got spared from ivan

hmmm easier to post an image then to give the code to posting an image
546. Alec
cool! post a slide show.
547. cjnew
oh! i didnt know you were saying that to me lol i was wondering who you were telling to go to the doctor lol
a slide show of what? my kids?
549. cjnew
eeww i love slide shows!!!!!!
550. Alec
ivan was thinkin of the FL panhandle the whole time. it didnt have the initiative to hit jamaica. or else theyd be in big trouble.
so if the shear stops, the convection may regroup with the eye?
552. Alec
553. cjnew
i havent heard much about how cuba faired during dennis....
actually..bama took the hit
i don't think i can post a loop of a storm, at least the GOES ones, it has some kind of java thing you can't copy and paste
556. Alec
make a slide show of you in the heat of the fury.
cjnew-cuba doesn't really release that kind of info, we may at some point get word from the red cross on damages/casualties etc
558. cjnew
i had high expectations for franklin but he hasnt impressed me at all except that he keeps on keepin on!
559. Alec
If you posted the code this blog site would turn into a photo album
560. cjnew
thanks rich, i figured they didnt since they wont even let us fly over their island
561. Alec
Franklin's a fighter, stubborn and piggish. Franklin probably having a party with seagulls.
562. cjnew
we should make a scrap book of 2005 hurricanes
563. Alec
do you think they would allow us to run a video on here?
564. cjnew
i really think they should have made im frank or frankie i dont like franklin
the code isn't hard to find, it is the common code for posting pictures in html
566. Alec
or franco
567. cjnew
oh yeah i like frank.... O
568. cjnew
well i have to go. did we make it to 500
569. Alec
or nilknarf? (franklin backwards)
570. Alec
we made it well past 558.
571. cjnew
clever lol
They retired frederic after I punched him in the eye in 79..sad thing is he punched back with pine trees.
573. Alec
a new record.
574. cjnew
cool talk to ya later......i had planned to stay up but i've go to do something bye!!
575. cjnew
576. Alec
have a good nite cj always a pleasure to talk! :)
577. cjnew
thanks see ya
578. Alec
outrocket, you did? . wow . not surprised
579. Alec
im still waiting for gert. he was supposed to make it here days ago but nows been extended till thursday.
Franklin in last satellite image ...almost looks like a storm in a mirror but one colorless
581. Alec
then itll be extended another week...and the next...and the next, probably extended eventually for forever.
he came to me alec...asking for it ..I swear..LOL
I know it's only one model but the GFS sure does like the wave about to come off Africa. It recurves it but still we might get #8 before August.

584. Alec
seems to be lookin at its self. you know were really close to breaking #600?
585. Alec
thats consistent with 2005. that sure wasnt a surprise.
interesting cane,we just might
587. Alec
gerts still going to be the biggest thing to ever threaten my house. im still waiting for it. so are my shudders and my generator. lol
yea that last satellite image is spooky franklin should have been an OCT.storm..franklin and his ghost.
589. Alec
ghosts are scary
well you know he could have been a 70s storm that just arrived late,he looks a little detached from his body. he's having one of those "out of body expierence's".
591. Alec
haha that was silly outrocket but i liked that!
592. Alec
we're so close to 600. lets make it there guys.
imagine this if he were to stay that way(which he wont)..melbourne gets the eye and miami gets the convection..
594. Alec
595. Alec
kinda sounds likes jeanne and frances to me.
When I look at the visible floater at night, what am I really seeing? Is it unenhanced IR, or some supersecret night vision?
dang the exception to the rule..
598. Alec
its night vision. you gotta use night vision goggles to see like superman.
oh thanks alec...you just wait..LOL.
600. Alec
either i get the honor of getting 600 or someone else. lets see when i click the back button.
601. Alec
yep. hafta go. fun talkin to you guys. its always great to get a good laugh once in a while. we'll try for a 1000 tomorrow. LOL -later
On this link, it almost seems like Franklin is chasing the thunderstorms to the southeast. Maybe, just maybe, Franklin will stick around for a while (taken from Steve's blog) http://www.ssd.noaa.gov/PS/TROP/DATA/RT/float2-vis-loop.html
603. Alec
Hey guys! good morning to the splendid heatwave im anticipating. lol

I found some cool sites for you all to look at-


now this site shows the eyes of some of these hurricanes check it out- www.photolib.noaa.gov/flight/eye1.html (can even see a concentric eye wall on at least one of these photos)
604. deb1
I wonder if Franklin really is going to croak any time soon. The NHC are forecasting it to survive another 5 days yet. Jeanne really surprised me when it looped. I wonder if Franklin will get bored with it's current track and swing back round looking for a bit of action. Must be feeling lonely, stuck out to sea, with only the occasional ship to appreciate its 12 ft waves.
605. Alec
haha. deb1 youre amusing! (a good thing) Franklin is lonely, bored, and trying really hard to copycat Jeanne. It wants to be the only storm around.
606. Alec
doesnt look like much in the Caribbean but a few lonely showers near S America. Gert wasnt much of a Gert.
STORMTOP is certainly quiet...sup???
I sent the following message to WU today.


Having the ability to chat in a real time fashion with other members would be great especially during active tropical events. We are using the message post blog as sort of a chat room but a real chat room would be better. Any chance of Weather Underground adding a chat room for it's members?

609. Alec
yah. havent heard from him since yesterday morning yesyerway. welcome back!
610. Alec
where do you think he is? he might still be on that jun30 blog.(yesterday,we got split up as this blog dissapeared for a while. Told jeff about it and probably fixed it.)
611. Alec
yesterway* -sorry
Greetings ALL
Was hoping I wouldn't be post number 666
WILDHORSE how are all your critters today?
Every critter large and small seems to be behaving here in Houston - but we did get slammed with yet ANOTHER storm yesterday afternoon.
613. deb1
At the rate storms seem to have been forming this season, I don't know that it will be able to be the only storm in town for five more days. As for Gert, well, with a name like Gert, you can't expect it to perform like an Emily. What's the next name coming up? Isn't there an Ophelia somewhere along the line. There's a grand name for a storm!
614. Alec
greetings emmyrose, its pretty slow this morning. So is Franklin. lol
615. deb1
I thought Texas was in the midst of a drought? Has that since changed or is only Houston getting rain?
Deb1 - maybe their afraid of having names like Gert
that would steer me clear of becoming a hurricane
617. Alec
i think Ophelia sounds kinda like a character from Hamlet. i may be wrong though.
You see Deb we're very special here in Houston
just ask the people from Dallas LOL
Good morning. I say lets try for 1000 comments.
You are correct again Alec
Ophelia done goes crazy like in Hamlet
not a good omen name for a hurricane
Like Medea or Macbeth - argh I would run from them
storms hee hee
621. Alec
well, at the rate were going we may be able to get to 2000 before the next blogg's set up by jeff.
actually alec you are coreect, she was acharacter from hamlet
But I would love to name storms - is there a job opening for that one????????
Harvey is next, as in the giant invisible rabbit from the play
625. Alec
anybody that hasnt given a prediction give a prediction for the # of total tropical systems this season. weatherboyfsu is them down.
626. Alec
is writing*
I say 12
628. Alec
id like to hear yours too Stormtop if your watching.
So for the "I" name is it "Iago" might as well get a full sweep of Hamlet in here
I am not dead like some of ya'll may like (LOL). Reality been really sucking my time (my boss is acutally expecting me to work while I am at work). But a couple of things

First hi ya'll newcomers sit down, take your shoes off. We don't bite (well unless you ask).

Second for those that haven't guessed I am male, 33 married with children and looking like Al Bundy to be excat (LOL). And I hold no degrees in meteorlogy (althought I did want to become one, but chickened out due to the amount of advanced math courses). I am a software engineer by trade (and hopefully a novelist, poet and RPG games designer one day)

Next as far as total tropical systems I predicted 18 with 11 hurricanes and 8 major ones a while back. However if mother nature keeps the pace she has set in July we could be looking at 28 named systems by seasons end (ie 7 in Jul, Aug, Sept and Oct).

Lastly looks like what the good Dr. said, its going to be quite for a week or two. SST's are good but shear, dust and high pressue systems going to make a tropical system a hard sell for the next little bit
weatherboy you forgot EMMY~ROSE on your list
of predications - I say 12
632. Alec
emmyrose, weatherboy isnt logged on yet(i think, thats if hes not spectating our comments)
21 named storms for me.
Maybe they should have theme years for hurricane names. One years its shakespere, the next mascots, etc. I magine getting hit by the floria"gator"

Orion I agree and actually I glad to be able to do other things for a few days
635. Alec
did anyone hear about someone saying they might change the categories(1-5) of hurricanes?
636. Alec
that would be funny if one yr. they did a list of the names of presidents(US).
my prediction is more than we have had so far.....LOL
Alec I say 16 total for the season (excluding subtropical systems) and one subtropical storm, 9 hurricanes, 5 major. However my last guesses on how Dennis and Emily would make landfall were wrong.
639. Alec
haha outrocket! i think weatherboyfsu has your prediction already.
What !!!!, change categires. no I didn't, but Steve Gregory mention that another scale was needed and I agree. Probably something based on strength and size. I though about doing some stuff along those lines, but haven't got around to it yet
641. Alec
your the first one Stsimons to predict the # i predicted! yay! lol
I am going to go way out on a limb...double my lucky number 2...I say 22 storms.
No alec did not make one...but will 14 named storms 6 major...

I did a while back I suggested that a 7 or even 10 point scale might be helpful since a 155MPH cat 5 storm is ranked the same as a 190MPH cat 5 storm althought the damage they could do is vastly different (still extereme damage, but one is more like a giant's hand, the other diety level destruction).


Seriously I do a good job and my boss is pretty much the type you can do what you want within company policy as long as the work is done and before the deadlines. So my being away from the wunderground blog is more than thier is nothing major going on to talk about. Actually would be a good time for the Doctor to do his piece on globabl warming that he promised a while back.
The director of the Australian weather bureau in the early 1900s used to name tropical cyclones after political figures he disliked, so that such and such a storm would be "causing great distress" or "wandering aimlessly across the Pacific" His popularity saved his job for a good while, but he was eventually fired.

Franklin has a lower pressure than was thought, he just may stick around :)
646. Alec
thats 1 over the all time record for the Atlantic Basin hootie!
Would be neat to break the record though and get 22 storms--if they mostly stayed out to sea. That's funny Alec, I was trying to decide between 16 and 17, want me to change?
Well I keep hearing about 2005 being unusual...so I voted for an unusual number.
649. Alec
i AGREE ORION. The damage from a storm as the mph increase higher and higher is exponentially bigger. Even a 145mph hurricane is much worse than a 140mph hurricane.
650. Alec
but if i got hit in the head by a 2 by 4 in a cat 4 or 5 i dont care, its bad either way!
every mph counts when force is squared...LOL
That was 1 reasone I really didn't like Andrew being upgraded. If it was a 5 it was just barely a 5 and didn't belong among Camile and Laborday hurricane or the other big ones.
I am not in favor of changing the rating system for hurricanes--they fluctuate all the time in strength, just the eyewall replacement cycles can cause the winds to change by 10, 15, 20 mph between 6 hour advisories, and sometimes more than that. If the category a hurricane is ranked in is always bouncing up and down, it would just cause confusion for the general public, not to mention the news anchors who get the facts garbled often enough!
654. Alec
Nice to talk to you guys. I'll be back later this afternoon. Gotta walk in the sweltering, blistering heat to class. Keep it up yall! when i get back i want this blog to go in the record books! If anyone sees stormtop tell him we want his prediction too. -later
Maybe they'll name hurricanes after us - LOL
StormTop would be quite a storm huh?
Maybe I went too low with my predictions 12 but I"m hoping with this bizarre season we're getting them all out of the way and September will be calm - maybe I'm dreamin -
Tx I agree ,somehow no matter what they say politics ruled into ANDREW being reclassified..I'm with YOU..it was NO CAMMILE had it been ...florida would have a neat canal through it...
Yeah, Camille was quite devestating...I was 12 when the eye hit in Biloxi MS...I lived in Slidell LA. It scared me soo bad that when you say hurricane...I run as fast as I can to get out of the way! LOL
LOL I had this discussion a couple weeks ago about Andrew not being a true 5 in my book--I think that a storm should have BOTH the central pressure and wind velocity to make its category.
Bet the people who got slammed by Andrew in Florida just call it a "monster" anyway
spooky thing is...if catastrophic(its act of god)..and there were alot of suites still pending when ANDREW got reclassified...it let some insurance cos.off the hook..
Outrocket, no doubt. An upgrade at the end of the season(like gaston's)I can accept, but not years later. Yes there is a total review going on, but it almost seems this was done to upgrade Andrew. The problem is that south FL thinks they've seen the worst, and they didn't see anywhere near the worst.
You are right on that count Emmy...devestation is devestation.
we that were here on gulf coast know Cammile was a cat5..with no doupt..they still find caskets occasionaly where CAMILLE dug up cemetaries....
uuuuhg...now that would be an unfortunate find.
St.Simon, thats one place I have to disagree, press is secondary to wind for a storm's strength, imho. Most meteorologist disagree(and I am a meterologist myself), but thats how I think. Thats why in my ranking wind is first sort and press is second(there are obviously more, but they don't matter here). Of course I think this has been discussed ad nauseum so no need to do that again. But I do agree andrew was no five.

One thing I am wondering is "will emily get the upgrade at the end of the year", it was soooo close in the Carribean.

Emmy, my point was that the devastation is so much greater with 190 vs 155/160 that people might get the "i've been through this bad before syndrome" and not realize that the 190mph storm is 50% more force hitting you. But yes, devestation is devestation.
The good news is that as rare as 175+ is(there have 7 since 1960, so 1 every 7/8 years) it is even rarer to see one hit at peak. Unfortunatelly Camille, give it 12 hrs and it might have been down to 155(this is just speculation)
Sorry i meant 6/7 years. I wasn't thinking.
StSimonsIslandGAGuy has a point, max winds can vary heavily depending on if the hurricane is going a eyewall replacement cycle. I think my scale would still be vaild but instead of a 15MPH per catagory scale, maybe increase it to a 30MPH per catagory scale, that way even with wind changes a Cat 3 hurricane will likely remain ranked as a Cat 3. Otherwise we do away with the scale althought and just list the max/min winds like if a hurricane has 155MPH winds, list it as a 145 - 165 MPH storm.