Tropical Storm Barry Part 1

Tropical Storm Barry is currently over the Gulf Of Mexico. It is a poorly organized storm from the latest satellite image. There are multiple vortices in the storm, which makes forecasting a challenge.

The $64,000 question is where does Barry go. I created a heat map with mix of the latest forecast, which is 0000Z and 1800Z GFS ensemble track guidance. I got them from NCAR-Tropical Cyclone Guidance. It is a heat map using points within 300 mile/480 kilometers radius.

Most forecast models have it going into Louisiana. However, there is a westward trend from yesterday at this time. Here is yesterday’s forecast model for comparison.

The risk for Texas has gone up slightly. Despite most forecast models having Barry going into Louisiana, I am not going to say where the storm makes landfall as there are multiple vortices in Barry. Depending on which vortices wins out, it can change where Barry goes. Louisiana and Texas need to keep an eye on Barry.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) forecasts it will become a strong tropical storm. Here is an intensity forecast model. It is also from NCAR-Tropical Cyclone Guidance.

Most forecast models have strong tropical storm. None forecast a hurricane. Like I have said many times, intensity forecast models are notoriously unreliable. If Barry gets stronger, it would move west towards Texas as hurricanes are more influenced by upper air pattern. I would not be surprised if Barry becomes a hurricane. I would forecast at most a Category 1 hurricane.

Here is what I think will happen.
-Depending on which vortices wins out, it can change where Barry goes.
-Hurricane is possible with Barry.
-Regardless of development, heavy rain and flooding will be the main problem.

Regardless of forecast, everyone should keep an eye on soon to be Barry.

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Potential Tropical Cyclone Two Or Soon To Be Barry

NOAA/NESDIS/STAR GOES ABI BAND 07 OR_ABI-L1b-RadC-M6C07_G16_s20191920211320_e20191920214104_c20191920214144.nc

Potential Tropical Cyclone Two is currently over the Gulf Of Mexico. It is getting better organized thanks to warm water and lack of wind shear. I would not be surprised if we see Tropical Depression 2 or Barry come tomorrow morning.

It begs the question, where does Barry go. I created a heat map with mix of the latest forecast, which is 0000Z and 1800Z GFS ensemble track guidance. I got them from NCAR-Tropical Cyclone Guidance. It is a heat map using points within 300 mile/480 kilometers radius.

Most forecast models have it going into Louisiana. Texas still has a risk of seeing Barry making landfall. Despite most forecast models having Barry going into Louisiana, I am not going to say where the storm makes landfall as it has not developed fully yet. Louisiana and Texas need to keep an eye on soon to be Barry.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) forecasts it will become a hurricane. Here is an intensity forecast model. It is also from NCAR-Tropical Cyclone Guidance.

Most forecast models have strong tropical storm. A couple have it as a Category 1 hurricane. Intensity forecast models are notoriously unreliable. If Barry gets stronger, it would move west towards Texas as hurricanes are more influenced by upper air pattern. I would not be surprised if Barry becomes a hurricane. I would not be surprised if it becomes a Category 2 or even Category 3 hurricane. A stronger Barry would be more of a problem for Texas. The forecast path models assumes Barry is a tropical storm, which is less influenced by upper air pattern.

Here is what I think will happen.
-Potential Tropical Cyclone 2 could become Barry by tomorrow morning at earliest.
-Hurricane is possible with Barry.
-Regardless of development, heavy rain and flooding will be the main problem.

Regardless of forecast, everyone should keep an eye on soon to be Barry.

Future Barry Part 1

Invest 92L is currently an area of thunderstorms over Georgia. It is forecasted to move southwards towards the Gulf Of Mexico. The National Hurricane Center (NHC) gives a high chance that Invest 92L developing into something tropical. Conditions are generally favorable due to warm water and less wind shear.

The biggest question is where does Invest 92L goes. It is too early to tell. I created a heat map with mix of the latest forecast, which is 0000Z and 1800Z GFS ensemble track guidance. I got them from NCAR-Tropical Cyclone Guidance. It is a heat map using points within 300 mile/480 kilometers radius.

Most of the forecast models have Invest 92L going westward towards Louisiana and Texas. Houston area does have a risk of seeing Invest 92L going over by this weekend. Keep in mind, this is an early forecast model and anything can change between now and later this week. That begs the next question, will Invest 92L become Barry.

Here is an intensity forecast model. It is also from NCAR-Tropical Cyclone Guidance.

A number of forecast models have a tropical storm within the next few days. None have hurricane force at this time. Again, it is early to tell if Invest 92L will become a hurricane or not. Anything is possible with Invest 92L.

Here is what I think will happen.
-Invest 92L could become Barry in the next few days.
-Regardless of development, heavy rain will be the main problem for Texas and Louisiana.
-Flooding is likely where heavy rain falls.

Invest 92L bears watching between now to the end of the week. Be weather ready.

Invest 91L As Barry?

Invest 91L is in the Gulf of Mexico. It is a low pressure area with thunderstorms. The National Hurricane Center gives it a moderate chance of developing in the next few days. The biggest question is where does Invest 91L go. Here is a heat map generated from forecast models from NCAR-Tropical Cyclone Guidance. It is within 300 miles of a forecast track point.

The forecast models have Invest 91L heading northward towards Texas. It could hug the Texas Coast or make landfall somewhere on Texas. Not often a tropical system hugs the Texas Coast like this. The 1837 Racer’s Hurricane hugged the Texas Coast before making landfall in the Southern US. It was a hurricane, unlike Invest 91L. That leads to the next question, how strong will 91L be?

The intensity forecast is from NCAR-Tropical Cyclone Guidance. The intensity forecast models keep Invest 91L below tropical storm. I do not put a lot of weight on intensity forecast models. They are unreliable. I would not be surprised if 91L becomes a tropical storm, which would be Barry.

Here is what I think will happen.
-Invest 91L could become Barry.
-Regardless of development, heavy rain will be the main problem for Texas, Louisiana, and Arkansas.
-Flooding is likely where heavy rain falls.

Invest 91L bears watching between now to the end of the week.

April 2019 Hurricane Season Forecast

Many areas are still reeling from Harvey, Irma, Maria, and as of late Michael. Michael was updated to a Category 5 at landfall. Not surprised by it. Many people lost their properties and are rebuilding. Some lost their life. Hurricane Season is coming as it starts on June 1, 2019.

Colorado State University
13/5/2 ACE: 80

Joe Bastardi (Weather Bell)
10 to 15 Storms/4 to 7 Hurricanes/0 to 2 Major Hurricanes ACE: 60 to 110

Tropical Storm Risk
12/5/2 ACE: 81

Accuweather
10/5/3

Crown Weather
10/6/3

The Weather Channel
12/6/2

The analog years I am using are in which El Nino started late and is forecasted to be El Nino for the rest of the year to next year. Obviously, the forecast is uncertain.

Based on this, the analog years are 1940, 1969, 1987, 1992, 1993, and 2015. They are part of a multi-year El Nino or El Nino that is gone for a short time, only to return again later like in 1992 and 1993. 1940, 1969, 1987, and 2015 are multi-year El Nino. El Nino is not the only factor. I look at Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), Northeast Pacific Warm Pool (NEPWP), Equatorial Indian Ocean (EIO), Tropical South Atlantic (TSAI), Southern Ocean/Roaring Forties, Quasi-Biennial Oscillation (QBO), and Atlantic Main Development Region (MDR)

Analog Years For 2018 (TS/H/MH ACE ACE/Storm)
1940 9/6/0 68 7.6
1969 18/12/5 166 9.2
1987 7/3/1 34 4.9
1992 7/4/1 76 10.9
1993 8/4/1 39 4.9
2015 11/4/2 63 5.3

All of the seasons had major hurricane, except 1940. However, I consider that suspect because of no satellite back then. The most active is 1969 with 18 named storms, 12 hurricanes, and 5 major hurricanes. Many other forecasts have 1969 as an analog year.

Here are notable storms in the analog seasons.

1940
Hurricane #2 or the 1940 Louisiana Hurricane makes landfall as a Category 2 hurricane on Sabine Pass, Texas. The slow movement led to massive rainfall totals of up to 38 inches! Some areas likely saw over 40 inches of rain. 20,000 square miles was affected by heavy rain, which had an average of 12.10 inches! The storm set many state rainfall records for Louisiana, which still stand to this very day. However, some areas in Louisiana may have seen 40 inches of rain from Harvey.

Hurricane #3 or the 1940 South Carolina Hurricane hits South Carolina as a Category 2 hurricane as it made landfall on Beaufort, South Carolina. The storm dumps heavy rain of up to 21 inches triggering deadly mudslides in Appalachia. It is probable some areas saw 30 inches or greater. The widespread heavy rain triggers massive flooding. The storm claims a total of 52 lives.

Hurricane #4 or the 1940 New England Hurricane ravages New England before hitting Nova Scotia. The hurricane moisture and a stationary cold front leads to heavy rain over New Jersey including up to 24 inches, which is the wettest for the Garden State to this very day.

Hurricane #5 or the 1940 Nova Scotia Hurricane hits Nova Scotia just weeks after 1940 New England Hurricane. It hits Nova Scotia as a Category 1 hurricane. The hurricane caused shipping disruption in the North Atlantic. The hurricane causes damage in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. There are three fatalities, in which two are off of America in ships.

1969
Hurricane Camille hit Cuba as a Category 2 hurricane. Than Camille underwent explosive intensification over the Gulf of Mexico. Camille had 900 millibars and 175 mph wind prior to making landfall on Mississippi Delta and Mississippi as a Category 5 hurricane. Gusts went high as 250 mph! The remants of Camille and cold front set off core rains over Western Virginia with extremely heavy rains centered over Nelson County, Virginia. Up 27 inches of rain was confirmed with a total as high as 31 inches in a barrel away from the center. It is probable up to 40 to 50 inches of rain fell in eight hours! Camille claimed 259 lives, mostly in Virginia from flooding.

Hurricane Francelia ravages Central America before making landfall on Belize. The slow moving hurricane dumped heavy rain over Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Honduras. The hurricane claims 271 lives, making it the deadliest prior to Mitch in 1998.

1987
Tropical Storm #2, which is the 1987 Gulf Coast Tropical Storm makes landfall on Texas, but most the heavy rain is east of the center. The Gulf Coast saw rain amount as high as 21 inches in Van Cleave, Louisiana.

Hurricane Emily hits Dominican Republic as Category 2 hurricane and emerges as a tropical storm. However, it undergoes rapid intensification to Category 1 hurricane of 90 mph and goes directly over Bermuda. Emily is the strongest hurricane to hit Bermuda since Hurricane #6 (Dog) or the 1948 Bermuda-Newfoundland Hurricane.

1992
Hurricane Andrew ravaged Bahamas and Florida as a Category 5 hurricane with 175 mph winds and 920 millibar pressure. It traversed over the Gulf of Mexico as a Category 4 hurricane before making landfall on Central Louisiana as a Category 3 hurricane. Once it was all done, South Florida was cut off from the world and did $27 billion in damages. Andrew was the costliest hurricane at the time prior to Katrina in 2005 and Harvey in 2017.

1993
Tropical Storm Arlene made landfall on Texas as a large tropical storm on June 19, 1993. It dumped heavy rain over a large area. The highest being over 15 inches of rain in Angleton. The system that became Arlene dumped heavy rain in El Salvador, which claimed 20 lives. There were five lives lost in Mexico. One died in Henderson, Texas. It claimed a total of 26 lives.

Tropical Storm Bret traveled across South America. It first made landfall on Galera Point, Trinidad and then goes over the Caribbean to make landfall on Macuro, Venezuela. It dumps heavy rain and triggers deadly mudslides. The highest measured is over 13 inches in Guanare with higher totals likely. Bret claims 173 lives in Venezuela, which is the deadliest along the 1999 Vargas Tragedy and 1967 Caracas Earthquake. The tropical storm goes over the Caribbean and makes landfall around Bahia Punta Gorda, Nicaragua. The storm dumps heavy rain over Central America, mainly in Nicaragua. The heavy rain leads to flooding and washes away villages. The storm claims 31 lives in Nicaragua. Bret goes over the East Pacific and becomes Hurricane Greg, which is a Category 4 hurricane.

Hurricane Emily is the only major hurricane of the 1993 Atlantic Season. It grazed North Carolina and came within 23 miles of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina on August 31, 1993. Emily moved eastward after it grazed North Carolina. The hurricane produced 10 feet storm surge in Buxton and dumped up to 7 inches of rain. Three people died from Emily.

Hurricane Gert made landfall on Bluefields, Nucaragua as it is ravaged from Bret as a tropical storm on September 15, 1993. It goes over Honduras as a tropical depression. Heavy rain falls over Nicaragua and Honduras, which leads to massive flooding. A total of 64 people die in Nicaragua and Honduras from Gert. Nearly 18 inches of rain falls in Corinto. Gert makes landfall as a tropical storm on Belize, affecting the Yucatan Peninsula. Gert emerges into the Gulf of Mexico as a tropical depression. From there, it becomes a Category 2 hurricane as it makes it final landfall north of Tuxpan as a Category 2 hurricane on September 20, 1993. Gert unleashes strong wind and heavy rain over Tamaulipas and Veracruz. The mountains see the heaviest rain with the highest total of over 31 inches in Aquismón with higher totals likely. The widespread rain leads to massive flooding that claims 45 lives in Mexico.

2015
Tropical Storm Bill made landfall on June 16, 2015 on Matagorda Island. Bill dumped heavy rain over Texas with a total of over 15 inches in Ganado, Texas. Bill weakens to a tropical depression and dumps heavy rain over Oklahoma with 8 inches of rain falling in Carter County. Bill claims 8 lives.

Tropical Storm Erika was a tropical storm that dumped heavy rain over Dominca. The mountainous terrain contribute to the heavy rain and deadly flooding and mudslide. Rainfall amount of 33 inches fell over Morne Diablotins. There was high precipitable water over Dominica. It was also north of the island. A total of 30 lives were lost in Dominica, which was the worst since Hurricane David in 1979.

Hurricane Joaquin is the strongest known Atlantic hurricane of non-tropical origin as it came from upper level low and surface low. Joaquin rapidly intensified into a Category 4 hurricane with 155 mph on October 2, 2015. It moved southwestward towards the Bahamas. It first made landfall as a Category 4 on Samana Cay and then Category 3 on Rum Cay and San Salvador Island. Strong winds, high waves, storm surge, and heavy rain pelt Bahamas. A 18 feet storm surge was reported in Long Island. As the Bahamas are being ravaged by Joaquin, the SS El Faro sinks into the abyss claiming all 33 on board. To make matters worse, there is a surface low of the coast of Georgia and Florida, which is drawing in moisture from Joaquin. The setup leads to widespread heavy rain over South Carolina and North Carolina. Nearly 27 inches of rain fell in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina. There is widespread flooding in South Carolina as there are 18 dam breaches from the heavy rain. The flood event in part from Joaquin claims 25 lives, including 19 in South Carolina.

Many of these notable storms in analog seasons were prodigious rainmakers. Some remain records yet to be broken. Some were intense like Camille and Andrew, which were Category 5 hurricanes and at landfall. I am not suggesting 2019 will see something like Camille, Andrew, 1940 Louisiana Hurricane, or Joaquin.

Here is a heat map of analog seasons. It is based on 300 mile radius from the storms.

The heat map shows the most active spot being off the Eastern US. Other hot spots are the Eastern Gulf Of Mexico, east of the Lesser Antilles, and off of Nicaragua and Costa Rica. However, when you look at the whole basin, everyone is at risk for landfall. I never make landfall predictions as I strongly object to doing landfall forecasts. The reason is everyone is at equal risk.

Analog
Mean
10/5.5/1.67
10/6/2 (Rounded Up)

Median
8.5/4/1
9/4/1 (Rounded Up)

Standard Deviation
4.2/3.33/1.75

ACE
Mean
74.33

Median
65.5

Standard Deviation
47.85

ACE/Storm
Mean
7.1

Median
6.4

Standard Deviation
2.54

How do analog seasons compare as a whole. Statistics from 1870 to 2018.

Mean
9.94/5.55/2.07
10/6/2

Median
10/5/2

Standard Deviation
4.24/2.63/1.68

ACE
Mean
93.34

Median
84

Standard Deviation
54.55

ACE/Storm
Mean
9.40

Median
8.67

Standard Deviation
4.03

The analog seasons are within standard deviation, which indicates this upcoming hurricane season is going to be within average.

What is my prediction for this season?
9 to 15 named storms, likely 12 named storms
5 to 10 hurricanes, likely 7 hurricanes
1 to 4 major hurricanes with 2 major hurricanes
ACE is 60 to 120 with ACE likely of 70 to 110

Let’s see how my April 2018 hurricane forecast compare to the actual 2018 season.

11 to 16 named storms, likely 13 named storms
4 to 10 hurricanes, likely 7 hurricanes
1 to 4 major hurricanes with 3 major hurricanes
ACE is 80 to 140 with ACE likely of 100 to 125

Colorado State University
14/7/3 ACE: 130

Joe Bastardi (Weather Bell)
10 to 12 Storms/4 to 6 Hurricanes/1 to 2 Major Hurricanes ACE: 90 to 110

Tropical Storm Risk
12/6/2 ACE: 84

Accuweather
10/5/3

The Weather Channel
12/6/2

2018 Actual Number
15 Named Storms
8 Hurricanes
2 Major Hurricanes
127 ACE

Many including myself got the forecast close. The 2018 Hurricane Season was forecasted about right, not over or under. There is always room for improvement.

Regardless of forecast, I think 2019 could be an interesting hurricane season.

2018-2019 Winter Forecast

It is this time. Winter is here and Christmas is coming. Christmas comes sooner and sooner every year. We have a warming equatorial Pacific, which suggests El Nino is developing. What will the Winter of 2018-2019 be like? Since we had La Nina last winter and a developing El Nino. Here are El Nino in which the previous winter was La Nina.
1876-1877
1899-1900
1904-1905
1911-1912
1918-1919
1925-1926
1939-1940
1951-1952
1957-1958
1963-1964
1965-1966
1968-1969
1972-1973
1976-1977
1986-1987
1997-1998
2006-2007
2009-2010

Here is a map of sea surface temperature anomaly.

I will also look at the ocean temperature as they are factors besides El Nino, to narrow it down. They are Tripole Index for the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (TPI IPO), Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), Northeast Pacific Warm Pool (NEPWP), Equatorial Indian Ocean (EIOI), Roaring Forties (R40I), and Quasi-Biennial Oscillation (QBO). The rest that are not linked, please click on Climate Indices. Not all El Nino winters are the same.

Here is the chart of analogs.

Year ENSO TPI IPO PDO AMO NEPWP EIOI DMI R40I QBO Total Note
1876-1877 1 1 1 1 1 1 6 No QBO Data
1899-1900 1 1 1 1 1 5 No QBO Data
1904-1905 1 1 2 No QBO Data
1911-1912 1 1 1 3 No QBO Data
1918-1919 1 1 1 1 4 No QBO Data
1925-1926 1 1 1 1 4 No QBO Data
1939-1940 1 1 1 1 4 No QBO Data
1951-1952 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 7
1957-1958 1 1 1 1 1 1 6
1963-1964 1 1 1 1 1 5
1965-1966 1 1 1 3
1968-1969 1 1 1 1 1 5
1972-1973 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 7
1976-1977 1 1 1 1 1 5
1986-1987 1 1 1 1 1 1 6
1997-1998 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 7
2006-2007 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 8
2009-2010 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 7

I narrowed it down.
1876-1877
1899-1900
1951-1952
1957-1958
1963-1964
1968-1969
1972-1973
1976-1977
1986-1987
1997-1998
2006-2007
2009-2010

To further it, I narrow down even further.
1876-1877
1951-1952
1972-1973
1997-1998
2006-2007
2009-2010

I will use this as the analog winter forecast. Let’s look at the upper air pattern at the 500 millibar level or 18,000 feet. All the maps are from 20th Century Reanalysis Monthly Composites.

There is ridging over Northeast Canada and Greenland. That is a negative North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). A negative NAO is more favorable for cold winters. Some of the coldest winters have occurred due to negative NAO as cold air from the Arctic region is shunted southward. There is troughing over Gulf Of Alaska and Far East Russia, which are positive East Pacific Oscillation (EPO) and West Pacific Oscillation (WPO). They are the North Pacific equivalent of NAO. There have been freezes when NAO is positive while EPO and WPO are negative, which is ridging over Alaska and Far East Russia. December 1983 and February 1989 freeze occurred due to negative EPO despite positive NAO.

What will the temperature be like at the surface?

Most of Russia, Central Asia, Arctic, and Alaska are cold. Same goes with Eastern US and Texas. This suggests this winter could be a cold one. Some of the coldest winters on record occurred in those analog years of 1972-1973 and 2009-2010. It is most warm over Northeastern Canada, Greenland, Korea, Japan, North Africa, and Southern Europe. It is no surprise that Northeastern Canada and Greenland are warm as there is ridging over the area.

Let’s look at temperature at 850 millibars or 5,000 feet.

The air is cold at 5,000 feet over Russia, Central Asia, Arctic, and Alaska. It is also cold mainly over Texas. The reason I am including this is if is freezing cold above the surface, it increases the chance for snow in the winter. One can have freezing cold at the surface, but warm above ground. That leads to freezing rain or sleet. For snow to form, the upper atmosphere needs to be cold. Snowfall occurs if the surface is not cold because the atmosphere is freezing. It is above that counts. Often when it snows, it is not really that cold.

Lastly, let’s look at precipitation rate.

It looks most wettest in Southeastern US, Southwest, and West Coast. It is also wet in Southern China, Korea, and Japan. It is also wet in Northern India, Nepal, Spain and Portugal. Southeast Texas looks to see about average rainfall.

How were winters like in these analog years?

1876-1877
I cannot find any weather records for Texas that winter. England and Wales had their wettest winter on record.

1951-1952
One of the warmest winters on record for Southeast Texas. It is warm throughout the US.

1972-1973
Houston had three 1 inch or higher snowfall on January 11, February 9-10, and February 17-18. It is Houston’s snowiest winter on record since 1895 when 20 inches of snow fell on February 14-15, 1895. New York City records the least amount of snow in winter on record of 2.80 inches. The winter is one of the coldest on record for Southeast Texas.

1997-1998
The world is gripped by an extremely strong El Nino. Western US had record rainfall, while Indonesia has a severe drought. It is one of Texas’s wettest winter on record.

2006-2007
Freezing rain on January 16-17, 2007. It is part of the much larger North American Ice Storm.

2009-2010
Houston records earliest 1 inch snowfall on December 4, 2009. Second snowfall on February 23, 2010. It is one of the coldest winter on record for Southeast Texas.

Does this mean 2018-2019 winter will be record cold like in 1972-1973 or 2009-2010 or warm like 1951-1952? Does this mean we will see a freezing cold or warm winter? Does this mean we will see many snowfall this winter? Not necessarily. It can go either way.

I think this winter could be a cold winter. I would not be surprised to hear of a major cold blast this coming winter or snow falls again. I could see major winter storms happening.