Gulf Coast Hurricane Tracker

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Sunday, June 13, 2010

Tropical Wave looks ready to develop

An early tropical wave from the coast of Africa is showing strong signs of developing. This morning the National Hurricane Center was showing that this system had a 20% chance of organizing. Now they are estimating a 60% chance of development.

This system is unusual in that tropical storms typically do not develop in this area of the ocean at this time of the year. Usually this early in the season, the source of tropical weather is in teh Western Caribbean and in the Gulf of Mexico while the African wave machine revs up.

Well this system is showing some good signs of coming together, signs that are easily seen from radar and satellite images. The water temperatures are very warm and there is little wind shear. Everythign indicates the potential that this could become Tropical Storm Alex sometime this week.

VIDEO: Let's Get Ready to Rumble...The Tropics are Bubbling (AccuWeather)

Directional forecasts all indicate that this system is likely to head towards the Lesser Antilles by the end of the week.

Tropical Weather Discussion, Sunday June 13, 2010 at 825 am EDT (Caribbean Hurricane Network)
Invest 92-L Located In The Eastern Atlantic: If this is what the rest of this hurricane season holds, then it's going to be a very, very long and potentially dangerous season!! I am closely monitoring an area of low pressure, labeled Invest 92-L, which is located about 900 miles southwest of the Cape Verde Islands (8 North Latitude, 32.5 West Longitude). This tropical disturbance is nearing tropical depression status. Satellite imagery this morning showed Invest 92-L becoming better and better organized with each new satellite frame and I think it may be upgraded to Tropical Depression status by this evening or at the very latest early Monday morning. In fact, it may reach tropical storm strength (its name would be Alex) sometime during Monday.

Analysis of this system showed that environmental conditions are favorable for development and intensification as we have very warm sea surface temperatures, good outflow, plenty of moisture and low wind shear values. The latest model guidance is forecasting that the low wind shear values will continue for the next 2 to 3 days and thus they are forecasting 92-L to be a 50 to 70 mph tropical storm in about 3 to 4 days. After that, weakening is forecast by the model guidance due to increasing wind shear values as this system closes in on the Lesser Antilles in 6 days. My take is that we are looking at slow, but steady intensification over the next few days and I expect that we may be looking at a 50 mph tropical storm around Tuesday or at the latest Wednesday.

The latest model track guidance is showing a west-northwest track over the next 2 to 3 days. The model guidance may actually be a bit too far north in their forecast tracks. The reason why I think this is because currently there is a large trough of low pressure located near 50 West Longitude. This trough should lift over the next few days and this will give way to a ridge of high pressure. This weather pattern would favor a west-northwest track over the next several days and the consequences are that this system will be near the Lesser Antilles by about Friday. All interests in the Lesser Antilles should keep close tabs on this system.

2010 Atlantic Hurricanes (courtesy of

NOAA Gulf of Mexico Radar (courtesy of

NOAA West Atlantic & Caribbean Radar (courtesy of

NOAA East Atlantic Radar (courtesy of