"But seeing they could not See; hearing they could not Hear"
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"From its chamber comes the whirlwind, and cold from the scattering winds." - Job 37:9.

"The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning on its course".

Friday, August 28, 2009

..Transitions Are Always A Challenge

(shown above..just south of the attractions area of Orlando, Fl...2001)
Today is sort of exciting from an atmospheric forecast perspective. As I type this morning, the atmosphere, unbeknownst to the majority, is undergoing some pretty significant changes over our heads right now that could result in some exciting weather late this afternoon. With emphasis on "could".
The steering currents of storm motion are in the process of shifting from the east to the west southwest (WSW). It will be a relatively quick transition in the scheme of that by mid afternoon the directional change will be complete...then later in the day the strength of that change increases.

Additionally, a mid-level cap at 700mb that was in place yesterday which suppressed storm activity is still there as of 6am...the question is to whether that capping mechanism will also be eroded during the transition, thus favoring rainfall in the form of thunderstorms later this afternoon unlike yesterday.

Most of the day will be benign, but I'm leaning faith in the forecast models that are hedging toward ample moisture, instability and dynamics in the form of low level wind convergence east of I-95. There appears to be neutral energy in place aloft this afternoon which doesn't bode well for storms reaching severe limits.

Synoptically speaking, a cut off low that has resided the past two days over the Deep South will fill and start to lift ENE during the day and merge with what is now superfluous Tropical Storm Danny over night tonight. This has been forecasted to occur for two days now, and see no reason to stray from this evolution. Convective Instability to be maximized in a region from Ft. Pierce diagonally NW to Cedar Key, FL on the west coast. This region is also the area where maximum upper level diffluence will occur. Mid and upper level temperatures, however, are not as cold as one could hope for generation of strong storms, in fact, they might be too warm. If that weren't bad enough, there is question as to whether the 700mb cap as alluded to earlier will erode at all...meaning the atmosphere at about 10,000 ft. might be too moisture deprived and warm for storm generation.

With the pros and cons layed out, it is with great uncertainty that a 'forecast' is made. I try to stress that the media and other forms of "information release to the general public" are not provided such free reign to state the not so obvious, which is I why I wanted to start this blog in the first place. Even if no one reads this I can spill my guts out somewhere in frustration and head pounding.

For example, in watching all forms of media release this morning and in weather models, I've seen that the weather can be from one extreme to the other...very wet or totally dry. All given, I'm leaning toward consistency and giving faith primarily in a blend of the NAM and RUC models combined with what I've learned about local affects that the models do not pick up on.

Looking for sea-breeze initiation early, but not making it far inland..and maybe actually retreating back toward the coast by late afternoon. Storms to go up about anywhere in peninsular Florida by noon time, mostly well inland at first and along the west coast..then gradually creeping toward the east coast in early afternoon. Volusia and counties south should realize the transition first..after 1pm as the WSW steering currents increase and previous storm merges further to the west coalesce and strengthen as they shove to the ENE. Points further south will see this resultant change after 4pm.

In my wishful thinking, but not altogether out of the realms of possibilities, some nice photographic opportunities will exist at the Manatee Park between 5pm and sunset in Cape Canaveral or at any open westward facing open expanse from Central Brevard south to St. Lucie County after 5pm. This is contingent that precipitation does not overrun the area earlier in the day...if it does indeed at all.

The core indicator as to whether late day convection (thunderstorms) will be present will be if lighter showers form in the area after 1pm. If they do, that would mean that the capping element is undergoing erosing, thus allowing more robust activity to form later.

So, this is not so much a forecast, as a rounding out of the possibilities that do exist for today, which in many ways is more important than just spelling it out in black and white as media is forced to. So be advised, it can swing both ways today..the good, the bad, and the ugly...or pleasantly benign. Being the weathernut I am...I'd prefer the former.

What about Danny? I see Danny as a dud in and of itself. However, as the storm moves north and a tad closer to the U.S. east coast, with its merger with the continental low pressure system complete it will be a subtropical or hybird system (I need to look it up to see what the difference is). The mid-Atlantic and in particular New England could be in for some tropical storm force gusts combined with very 'wet' conditions, but the storm should no longer be named per se (although for lack of any other reason, it probably will be).

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