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Weather discussions by Gert & Dave during the 2021 Atlantic Hurricane Season. The homepage with the links to local reports from the islands, latest satellite image, current weather outlook can be found here.

Tuesday, July 20, 2021 06:13AM EDT - Quiet on all fronts. For now...

Good morning all from Germany,

First, prayers and condolences to all affected by the catastrophic flooding in Western Germany, Belgium and Holland. The worst flooding is roughly 2.5 hours west and southwest of where my wife and I are staying. While this is the Caribbean Hurricane Network, I cannot ignore the human devastation and physical destruction so close to me which happened so quickly and somewhat unexpectedly. Flooding to some level was forecast possible but 2 months of rain in one day plus residual rains before and after was not even fathomed. The surreal pictures tell many stories which leaves one speechless in it's ferocity and terror.

The Atlantic and the Caribbean, on the other hand, is devoid of calamity for the present time as, after a very fast and frantic start, a lull and a sense of calm has enveloped the region. Saharan Dust, dry and hazy, continues to play tag with the continuous African wave train with the dust winning at almost every turn, reducing active splashdown off the African coast waves to mere shells of their former formidable selves. However, the lull, while welcomed, will be short lived and a few of those waves will unfortunately be the tag-ers and somewhere in the Caribbean, GOM, and east coast will be the tag-ees.

Looking ahead in the short term, nothing stands out except for the omnipresent dust. As shared earlier, waves exit the African coast but are reduced quickly by a steady diet of dryness to the north, wringing out the wave like you would a squeegee. There are a couple waves approaching the islands currently with the first very weak and the second with much more moisture content with not much else. In about a week, models suggest tropical cyclone formation is probable off the South Carolina coast and/or south of Newfoundland. Obviously not in our arena but still, if this manifests, will be a probable sign our lull might be over.

Complacency sucks. Be prepared.


Tuesday, July 6, 2021 21:44PM EDT - Caribbean says bye Elsa

Good night,

Now, for the second time a minimal hurricane, Elsa is finally out of the Caribbean arena and jumped headfirst into the GOM. Lashing the lower west coast of Florida with a trailing scorpions tail still stinging the Keys, Elsa, at the moment about 45 miles off to the west of Sarasota, could intensify just a bit more before finally taking a header north of Tampa if the track holds as forecast. Hurricane hunters are currently in the storm and have found a wobbly system still trying to get more organized. The upgrade to hurricane status was based on land based radar readings with the HH in there now trying to confirm. A 5 mph uptick will not make much difference in Elsa's effects though. The longer she is over water, the potential for strengthening does remain though. However, it won't be the wind that does the most damage right away. It will be the storm surge. The wind and flooding rains will pick up the damage slack. After Florida, Elsa looks to take a tour of the whole east coast. She sure will have come a long roundabout way from the coast of Africa to visit the Statue of Liberty.

Back to the Caribbean and the MDR, the most prominent features are 3 tropical waves and an expansive, copious amount of Saharan Dust stretching from the Cabo Verde Islands east to the Lesser Antilles west while dipping below 10N and above 30N. This over 2500 mile stretch of moderate to heavy dust concentrations will severely inhibit any system traveling close to or through from trying to become the next name in an already record setting tropical season just 1 month and 6 days old. if this layer was dipping below 10N just a week ago, we probably would not have had an Elsa before reaching the Caribbean, if at all.

The wave closest and furthest south is below 10N around 66W with blustery, rainy conditions affecting the lower Windward islands and Trinidad/Tobago. Too close to South America now, it might be interesting in the Western Caribbean. The middle wave is wimpy around 44W with not much of a future for the time being as it's too close to the dipping SAL around 10N, while the third wave, also a 10N lurker at 29W, has more convection than the middle one but also is being suppressed by the omnipresent SAL.

There is a 4th just launching off the African coast with impressive size and not enveloped in dust. Time will tell if it keeps it's composure or poofs under the dust onslaught. Even if it does, the wave train will send more so don't let the lull in action, lull you.

Be prepared and stay safe!


Sunday, July 4, 2021 12:18PM EDT - Confusing Elsa

Good morning and Happy Independence Day America!

Once rushing to her appointment with history and now, having made that history as the earliest recorded E named storm, Elsa has decided to slow things down a bit and try to straighten up her disheveled, non-stacked levels so she can strengthen in time for her encounter with Cuba.

Once an astonishing 31 mph road runner (beep beep) of a tropical system, unheard of in this basin for speed and the ability to strengthen into a hurricane no less, now TS Elsa is a rather pedestrian 13 mph, moving to the WNW. Menacing Jamaica with heavy rains and the SW parts of Haiti with winds and rain, Elsa is also learning to sew; threading the proverbial needle of Caribbean Sea between Jamaica and southeast Cuba carefully avoiding direct land interaction. This avoidance, along with those very warm waters, moist atmosphere and her slowing down, will allow for some internal strengthening to occur in the form of finally stacking herself vertically instead of being tilted NW to SE which appears to be already occurring at the lower and mid levels. While looking more vigorous and TS like on satellite, this internal strengthening takes time to translate into higher wind speeds. Hence, she is still a 60 mph TS. Currently TS warnings are up for Cuba, Jamaica, and the lower half of Florida Keys. A hurricane watch is still in effect for some eastern provinces of Cuba while TS watches are up for several of the Caymans, parts of SW Florida, the upper half of the Keys, and one Cuban province. Obviously these will change as Elsa does.

Behind her, she has left damage, destruction and sadly a few fatalities so far. Please see the correspondents' posts on the various islands impacted already to the right of this writing for first hand accounts and pictures which you will not normally see or hear otherwise. Barbados appears to have taken not only the first lick but the worst as Elsa turned into a hurricane as she roared overhead.

So, where to from here? Where will she cross Cuba? Where will she go then?Florida is still the consensus choice among most of the models with an approach from the west side becoming more clearer yet not definite. All depends on what condition Elsa is in after crossing Cuba into the Florida Straits. If she does approach from the GOM side of Florida, she will have a chance to once again re-strengthen before coastal impact as she will be over uber warm waters in the gulf for a day or two. Still, forecast to stay a TS.

With that said, almost all of her energy, winds, heavy rain, Tstorms, lightning, flooding, trees falling from already soggy ground, sporadic power outages and probable tornadic activity will be directed to the east and NE. This means from curvature into the west coast all the way to Jacksonville, Georgia and South Carolina, Elsa will wreak some sort of havoc. She came in with a rush and will probably go out with a bang.

If you haven't already prepared ahead of Elsa, your time is very short. I know, I know most in Florida are not taking Elsa seriously. Do I stock up anything? Fill the car with gas? Have an evac plan just in case? Check on elderly and less able neighbors? Take my boat out of the water? Batteries? Water? and the list goes on. Having been a veteran going through Marilyn, Irma, Maria and all those in between on St. Thomas, preparation is my number 1 priority. Most importantly, it saves lives. It also allows you to handle the aftermath which most times is a lot worse than the hours of the storm itself.


Saturday, July 3, 2021 08:08AM EDT - Record pace Elsa

Good morning,

Hurricane Elsa continues to rumble WNW at a record pace through the Eastern Caribbean at 31 mph, the fastest tropical system ever recorded in this part of the Caribbean basin rushing towards a date with the DR, Haiti, Jamaica and Cuba. A minimal but still formidable hurricane at 75 mph, weakening is apparent on satellite imagery as her COC (center of circulation) is outrunning the rest of the system creating her own shear which is not allowing her to stack up and strengthen. Hurricane hunters are currently entering the system now and we should have a better picture of Elsa's structure and short term possibilities soon.

The future is still quite uncertain as to Elsa's potential longevity, track and intensity. Even though Elsa will be encountering much warmer waters ahead ripe for strengthening, wind shear at mid levels, upper level wind shear created by her own fast pace shenanigans, and interaction with land could easily take her down a peg or two before her expected Caribbean exit into the Florida Straits. The mountains of Jamaica and southern Cuba especially will have a large say, yay or nay, whether Elsa survives.

Heavy rains, flooding, rough seas, coastal erosion, and damaging winds are still on tap. When interacting with the mountans she should weaken due to loss of fuel (warm waters) and the friction of land which is good. There is always a ying and a yang though. While that is good, very heavy rains being wrung out by those same mountains can cause dangerous mud and landslides. This was just evidenced in Japan where a city 60 miles from Tokyo received over a months rain in 48 hours.

After the Caribbean it still looks like she will menace Florida but as a strong TS. As she weakens her wind field will expand so right now, it looks like most of the Peninsula will receive TS force winds, obviously stronger closer to the center.

More later as RECON gets up close and personal with Elsa today. As a side note, Elsa did meet the minimum criteria for rapid intensification just as she barged into Barbados, rising 35 mph in strength in the immediate 24 hour period preceding. Can she do it again? Possible with those juicy waters ahead but odds say no with too many negative factors surrounding those waters and in the air.

Looking in the rear view mirrow a vigorous tropical wave is about to splash down off the African coast with more lined up waiting to. While we keep our eye on the prize, here's a reminder to look behind you as well.


Thursday, July 1, 2021 22:00PM EDT - Extra add

Hello again,

I did share that there was a lot going on.I neglected to add that with the advent of the hurricane hunters' first flights in, above and around Elsa tomorrow, a very muddled picture should become much clearer. That said, I just looked at the latest satellite pictures which show, on the outside at least, Elsa is hard at work warding off the dry air to the north and consolidating herself which was not the case just a few satellite hours ago. If this is verified, she will be stronger when she encounters the islands tomorrow. Barbados, you are on deck.
Stay safe and vigilant.


Thursday, July 1, 2021 21:24PM EDT - Expeditious Elsa

Good night all,

Just a quick update on speedy TS Elsa, barrelling down the Atlantic highway on a collision course at the intersection marked by the Windward Islands of Martinique, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada, and Dominica after running the red light that is Barbados. Currently all have TS warnings up except for a TS watch up for Grenada and Dominica is watching anxiously. No one wants a TS to visit but the silver lining for Elsa's unwanted passage is her forward speed of 28 mph to the WNW. She will not linger one bit which is the good news. Be prepared though for power outages, flooding and landslides, torrential rains and buffeting winds. Islands farther to the north like the USVI, BVI, Antigua and down the line will feel peripheral effects but these should be short lived. PR and St. Croix of the USVI could feel those effects a bit longer due to their forecast proximity as Elsa motors by to the south.

Once past the front line to the eastern Caribbean, Elsa is setting her sights on the DR. Haiti, Jamaica and Cuba. All of these have TS watches up for most or all of their countries. Why already even before she reaches Barbados? Her continuing forward speed. Elsa is forecast to continue speeding along with a large helping push from a strong Bermuda high pressure system which is also the steering wheel for Elsa. However, as she nears the DR and Haiti, the high's influence could wane while Elsa slows down to a TS pedestrian 10-15 mph. When that transpires, several things can happen and only one is good. Which means it probably will not happen. She goes poof. Degenerates into an open wave as a victim of her own speed, land interaction, and increased (possibly) upper level winds. Now let's look at the bad things. Slowing down will allow Elsa to straighten her decoupled, disheveled self and stack up all levels which is indicative of strengthening. Much warmer waters between Cuba and Jamaica will contribute to this process as well. Hopefully, rapid intensification will not occur here but it is a possibility. Wind shear should be medium and the atmosphere humid. Forecast for now is a strong TS. A hurricane is a real possibility. That depends a lot on how much land interaction Elsa encounters.

Past that too early to tell accurately. Will the weakness in the ridge allow it to turn North and be steered by a trough dropping down from the midwest thus avoiding the GOM and Florida for the most part but putting the T&C and the Bahamas in her crosshairs? Or will it turn north later and go up the west coast of Florida, cross over the peninsula and ride the east coast? Maybe turn way later and run amok all the way to the magnet of the gulf, Louisiana? All scenarios are possible so prepare wherever you are. You might want to do it quickly too, as Elsa is not dallying.

Behind Elsa are several, early season vigorous waves, headed ever eastward. Historically, we see this happening in August and September, not June and fairly quiet July. This does not bode well.

I know I said this was going to be a quick update but it wasn't. There are a lot of scenarios and possibilities with Elsa with the inevitable changes in the days ahead. All we can do is be and stay informed and prepared.


Wednesday, June 30, 2021 20:53PM EDT - Elsa

Good night all,

95L took one for the tropical team the last few days as it battled dry air ingestion plus an assault by upper level wind shear. Farther north than our lowrider 97L, 95L essentially moistened up the atmosphere in advance of the onrushing system behind it, paving the way. Taking one last shot tonight, it appears 95L is done. Taking advantage of that sacrifice, enter the lowrider.

It appears that 97L, now unofficially TS Elsa, just missed the 8 pm advisory and therefore most likely will be declared born on July 1st as opposed to June 30th due to the NHC's use of UTC time as opposed to local time. However, the official classification of Elsa should be as of the 11 pm advisory local time unless other factors play in between now and then which means TD#5. Either way, Elsa will be on her way.

On her way where though? Models are in tight agreement as to where for the next 3 days which is WNW at a fast trot of 21 mph. Friday, she should be giving the islands of Barbados, Martinique, Dominica, St. Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines a short lived lashing. Tropical Storm watches are up for all except Dominica at this time. Already clipped by poofing 95L, Elsa fortunately will glide by quickly, hopefully minimizing her effects. However, one area to watch for potential catastrophe is St. Vincent where the La Soufriere volcano erupted on April 9th. Heavy rains could trigger mudflows of ash, boulders and debris. Hopefully this does not transpire.

Even after escaping the ITCZ and able to take advantage of the earth's rotation to spin up faster, other hampering issues lie ahead. Once through the islands, Elsa enters the graveyard of the Caribbean where the trade winds contribute to sinking air which is detrimental to strengthening. Higher north means closer encounters with dry Saharan Dust. Her forward speed might even increase for a time while interaction with the landmasses of the DR, Haiti, Jamaica and Cuba is also an inhibiting factor. Several things are going for her though on the other side of the scale. Upper level winds will now be favorable and the SST's start to become more fuel efficient. In fact, if Elsa reaches the very warm waters off Cuba's southern coast without too much trouble we might have a problematic hurricane running amok heading into the GOM or Florida. Right now, although really too far out to be very accurate, Florida is the odds on favorite. Is the Tampa shield still in force? Time will tell.


Wednesday, June 30, 2021 16:59PM PDT - Almost Tropical Storm 5
Invest 97L has been upgraded to 'potential tropical cyclone' 5. It is classified like that because it is not a tropical storm yet, nor a tropical depression, but it is expected to become a tropical storm in the next 48 hours. It is located about 1000 miles east of Barbados. At the moment it is expected to reach Barbados and the islands behind it on Friday as tropical storm Elsa, a new name on the list. Tropical storm watches have already been issued for St.Vincent & Grenadines, St. Lucia, Barbados, Martinique and Barbados (see the advisories for the latest).

Once it crosses the island chain it will end up in the central Caribbean, often a 'graveyard' for tropical cyclones. Indeed, models are not quite sure what it will do after and how strong it will be/get. But right now it is expected to maybe cross the southeastern tip of Haiti and Cuba.

Two things are unusual with this storm, first normally we don't have storms forming this far east. We expect Cape Verde storms in August, not June. Also, this season is on track to beat last year's record already! We had never more storms before than last year, but the 5th named storm was declared on July 6 last year, this year it is probably going to be tomorrow, July 1... Oh, 95L, the closer invest we have been talking about passed the islands and is kind of falling apart. Stay safe everybody! -Gert

Monday, June 28, 2021 15:40PM PDT - Danny and 95L and ...
Tropical Depression 4 just off the South Carolina coast was upgraded to Tropical Storm Danny and will make landfall soon. Heavy rainfall is expected with some big swells, but it should not be a major event.

Meanwhile Invest 95L is getting closer and closer to the islands. The hurricane center is giving it a medium (40%) of becoming 'something' within the next 5 days. As it looks right now it is not expected to reach hurricane strength since conditions are not optimal. It is expected to track pretty far south though (see picture below). We will keep an eye on it!

Another wave, that Dave mentioned as well, moved off the African coast. It is still too early to tell if it will become something. Due to its large size and being close to the equator it might take a while to develop. We'll see in the next couple of days. Next name on the list is a brand new one: Elsa. Stay safe! -Gert

ECMWF Model Forecast of AL95 []

Sunday, June 27, 2021 09:36AM EDT - 95L and more

Good morning all,

The big picture shows a few areas of interest in the Atlantic as we wind down the first month of the Atlantic Hurricane season of 2021. One, not designated an invest just yet nor might it be, is located approx 650 miles ESE of the Ga. coastline while the other, designated 95L, is located about the same distance SW of the Cabo Verde (officially the Republic of Cabo Verde) islands far off in the eastern Atlantic at 10N 32W with a 1009 mb low attached. Plus more waves, anomalies, and uncertainty.

95L has waxed on and waxed off the last few days showing immense promise so early in the season before and upon splashdown off the African coast. However, due to seasonably cooler waters and an intrusion of saharan dust from the north, 95L diminished almost to a non invest but has since regained some organization and traction with the long range computer models. The 5 day outlook is at 30% and that 5 days covers approx. 2,000 miles over which alot can happen in that time and space. Moving at a slightly faster 15-20 mph clip, 95L is expected to reach the Lesser Antilles Wednesday night through Thursday with squally weather at the least and maybe a TD or TS at worst. The models are in good agreement on its track while the intensity forecast is a medium TS in 5 days. Upper level winds are still forecast to be hostile upon approach with copious amounts of dry air lurking which should tamp down any significant development. But as Isabel said this is not a normal year and it's never too early to be prepared or aware. Down the road this could pose issues for the mainland.

The system ESE of the Georgia coast is not expected to develop significantly due to it's proximity to the east coast where time will run out Monday night. Dry air and wind shear will also help hinder development but there is one factor which could enhance it temporarily and allow it to give battle to the wind shear and dry air: the very warm, fuel rich gulf stream which it will cross on it's trek to the coast. A TD possible? Maybe. If it does get stronger, it will probably dip further south. Either way, heavy rain, coastal flooding, rip currents, gusty winds and isolated tornadoes will be the consequences.

Moving forward, the next wave marching towards splashdown already has the NHC's attention. While 95L looks to go high eventually, this wave looks to take a more southerly route through the Caribbean which will pose all sorts of issues then. So, it appears we will have 96L and 97L sooner than later. In addition, the Sahel area between the Saharan desert to the north and savannas to the south already is experiencing a very rainy season and that bodes ill for the next 3-4 months. More immediately, the GOES-16 satellite is in for a 48 hour blackout with this activity ramping up which adds to the uncertainty.

Have a good Sunday. Stay safe and prepared!


Tuesday, June 22, 2021 16:51PM EDT - Harbingers

Good afternoon,

Looks like the tropical wave along 14N 54W has fizzled a bit from it's early season impressiveness, probably due to dry air ingestion as while the circulation has improved, the convection has waned. With that said, it only has about 30 hours or so to organize and get it's convective act together before it runs into wind shear which should put an end to any near term shenanigans. Still, squally weather will affect the majority of the Windward Island chain, especially the southern and middle islands. The eastern Leewards could still receive some drought relieving rains from this system as well. Down the road, it could be a seedling in the GOM.

The tropical wave behind this one, located approx. 11N 39W, also has garnered some interest but is of no consequence at this time. Again, further down the road this might be a seedling for the GOM with some long term models taking notice.

These waves are the harbingers of things to come in the MDR as early season waves are every year. On the African continent the wave train continues and will do so for months to come, each one a potential poof or a potential disaster. That's why it's so important to prepare and monitor all activity.

Speaking of activity, TS Claudette will lose much of her activity within the next 24 hours or so and degrade quickly over the colder waters of the northern Atlantic. Weakening Claudette might have a claim to fame though as a record setter which is subject to review and verification post storm analysis by the NHC. At the moment, Claudette not only was upgraded to a TS inland over Louisiana but was re-upgraded to a TS inland over eastern North Carolina before her emergence into the Atlantic! Formed over land then reformed over land. An amazing feat for sure if it holds up after scrutiny post op. I do suspect though that Claudette was a TS before landfall in Louisiana.

Stay prepared and stay safe!


Tuesday, June 15, 2021 16:48PM PDT - Bill and more
Invest 93L off the eastern US Coast was upgraded to Tropical Depression Two yesterday, and this morning to Tropical Storm Bill. This will be a short lived storm and expected to dissipate by tomorrow. No worries for us.

Invest 92L in the Gulf (Bay of Campeche) has a reasonable chance to become something since waters are plenty warm already. Even if it doesn't, it is expected to bring lots of rain in Central America and Mexico since it is not moving much... If it becomes a tropical storm, the next name on the list is Claudette.

Finally, yes, indeed, three systems this early in the season, there is Invest 94L in the far eastern Atlantic. On Saturday Dave alluded to the 'lowrider' already. It has a low chance of becoming something. It is still way too early for 'Cape Verde' storms, however, water is already 28C, warm enough for development. It is fighting with dry air which should prevent development (hopefully). It should be ok, but we'll keep an eye on it! -Gert

Saturday, June 12, 2021 22:00PM EDT - 92L and a lowrider

Good night all,

The tropics are showing signs of reviving after an early season Ana, a mere 3 weeks ago, jump started the 2021 Atlantic hurricane season. Now, could there be a tropical system named Bill running amok in the Gulf of Mexico next week? Well, yes and no.

Currently 92L is slowly percolating in the Bay of Campeche/SW Gulf of Mexico with seemingly time on its hands as it strives to get organized and reach named status. SST's are plenty warm enough to enhance and nurture organization but that's only one feather in it's cap. The thorns number several. As it mosey's along towards the north, 92L will encounter increased wind shear which will inhibit thunderstorm growth. Saharan Dust particles, having traveled all the way from the African continent, will help to dry out the atmosphere while interaction with land will inhibit growth as well. However, systems have survived these same conditions previously so Bill is possible. I doubt running though.

Not expected to become a hurricane or even a strong TS, it's forecast track at this moment is towards the E Texas, Louisiana coast; just where it's potential heavy rains will be an unwanted guest due to saturated soil already from the spring storms. Lake Charles, for example, cannot catch a break. Time will tell but do not look for any name, if at all, before say Tuesday or Wednesday.

Off to our east where we really don't start paying attention or even looking in June is a lowrider tropical wave with activity unusual for this time of year. Around 5N, 37W, it would have to escape the ITCZ in order to have any chance of development but it's impressive stance makes it one to keep an eye on nonetheless. After all, the way this year has been going so far.....

On the African continent itself are several impressive waves getting in line to fall off the coast and make their trek westward. The migration is evident which means it's preparation time if you haven't started already. Remember, knowledge and preparation are the keys.


Friday, June 4, 2021 16:26PM PDT - New forecast calls for above average season
Today Klotzbach et al. at Colorado State University came out with their updated forecast for the 2021 season. They still expect an above average season with 17 named storms (=18 total, Ana included). Normal (last 30 year average) is 14.4 storms. They expect 8 hurricanes (7.2 is normal), of which 4 might become major ones (3.2 is normal).

The "net tropical cyclone activity", a measure of the average seasonal mean of number of storms and number of storm days, is 158%. Normal (1950-2000) is 100%, though 'new' normal (1991-2020) is 135%. So this season is about 17% more active than the 'new' normal. The chance of one or more major hurricane passing anywhere through the whole Caribbean (a large area) is 58% (average for last century (another 'normal') is 42%). As I wrote earlier, main factors of the above average season are the neutral ENSO (El Nino Southern Oscillation) conditions.

New this year are the 'tropical cyclone impact probabilities', basically the chance of one or more storms passing by you within 50 miles. They report location not only in the US but also in the Caribbean. Below a list of islands/regions showing the probability of >10% of a major hurricane passing within 50 miles and the long term mean (1851-2019). Note that it is a bit biased for the larger islands, since the bigger you are the higher the chance.

  Island/Region           2021 'normal'
  The Bahamas              40%  27%
  Cuba                     33%  22%
  Mexico                   24%  16%
  Dominican Republic       23%  15%
  Bermuda                  16%  10%
  Turks and Caicos         16%  10%
  UK Virgin Islands        16%  11%
  Puerto Rico              15%  10%
  Anguilla                 14%   9%
  Antigua and Barbuda      14%   9%
  Haiti                    13%   8%
  Saint Kitts and Nevis    13%   8%
  US Virgin Islands        13%   8%
  Honduras                 12%   8%
  Montserrat               12%   7%
  Saint Martin             12%   8%
  Sint Eustatius           12%   7%
  Sint Maarten             12%   7%
  Jamaica                  11%   7%
  Cayman Islands           10%   6%
  Dominica                 10%   6%
  Guadeloupe               10%   6%
  Saba                     10%   6%
A full list (and more statistics) can be found here (scroll down to the end of the table for Caribbean locations). The complete hurricane forecast can be found at The next one will come out July 8. -Gert

Wednesday, June 2, 2021 07:26AM EDT - It's here!

Good morning everyone,

The 2021 Atlantic hurricane season is upon us as if we need more trials and tribulations this year but at least we were aware this was coming. Awareness that should lead to preparedness and knowledge which are the keys to minimizing the potential impact(s) of a storm hit and quite possibly survival.

As Gert explained, we are in for another above average season with most all indicators and forecast models in agreement, continuing the past 20 years trend of activity. As he also noted, despite that anticipated amount of activity, it only takes one to land in your backyard with potentially disastrous results.

Nothing is expected in the near 5 day term tropical formation wise which is "normal" for this time of the season. The fuel for these tropical engines is warm to bathwater SST's and they are on the rise. The Western Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico, two early and late season traditional breeding grounds, are already more than warm enough for activity to brew, as are a few areas off the east coast of Florida and the Bahamas.

So, with a known entity and the know-how/tools to mitigate it's attack and effects we can effectively "ride out the storm" in our best way possible. That doesn't mean nothing will happen to you personally and you will not suffer losses as even the best of preparedness can be overcome. However, being prepared and knowledgeable will go a long way to safeguard you and your family. Property can be replaced. You and your family cannot.

Take care, stay safe, be aware and informed! Prepare for the worst and hope for the best. Yes, a cliche but still the best recommendation.


Tuesday, June 1, 2021 10:00AM PDT - 2021 Atlantic Hurricane Season
Today marks the traditional start of the hurricane season. Although lately we often seem to have a storm before the start of the season. Like this year with Ana. However, that didn't reach hurricane status, so maybe June 1 for an official start does still seem valid. The last time a hurricane formed before June 1 was in 2016 (see this list of off-season storms on Wikipedia).

A few forecasts predict an above average season. The well renowned forecasters at Colorado State University will issue theirs June 4. If there are going to be El Nino or La Nina conditions during the season is one of the most important predictors. El Nino will suppress hurricane activity and La Nina the opposite. The current ENSO forecast (El Nino/La Nina) shows that La Nina has ended, and that more neutral conditions (in between an El Nino or La Nina) will occur through August. For the period August-October (more the peak of hurricane season) they predict 50% change of neutral conditions, 42% La Nina and only 8% El Nino (see here). So more La Nina-ish than El Nino-ish, whicht means that it is highly probably that CSU will come up with an above normal forecast as well...

Regardless the forecasts, as we all know, it only takes one hurricane in your backyard to spoil your season. It is best to prepare now by getting your hurricane shutters checked out, supplies stocked, etc., instead of waiting for the last minute when there will be long lines everywhere... And being well prepared will make you feel better as well this season!

Lastly a little plug for COVID-19 vaccinations! We all want things to get back to normal, esp. welcoming back tourist, a major part of many of the islands' economy. The quickest way to get there is to get vaccinated! It is safe, 100s of millions people have already done it. It is more risky for your health to NOT get vaccinated! These mRNA vaccines are not 'new' with 'unknown' long-term effects. The same method has already been used for SARS and Zika for example. So, if you want 'everything to open back up', you can actually do something about it by getting the shot! Some more info on the CDC website and a 'fact check' on USA Today. Stay safe everybody! -Gert

Saturday, May 22, 2021 13:32PM PDT - Ana
The Invest Dave was describing a couple of days ago has been upgraded to sup-tropical storm Ana. It has become pretty normal in recent years that we have the first named storm before the official start of Hurricane Season (June 1). Last year (when we had a record number of storms) we actually had 3 named storms before June 1st. Hope this year will be a bit more mellow...

But back to Ana..., it is located to the northeast of Bermuda and moving away. It is not expected to be a long lived storms due to high wind shear, dry air and lower sea surface temperatures ahead. The tropical storm watch for Bermuda has already been lifted. A good first storm to make everyone aware that hurricane season is just around the corner and that this would be a good time to start preparing for a possible threat... -Gert

Thursday, May 20, 2021 11:28AM EDT - First Invest 90L 2021

Good morning and hello all,

It's been a long time since I've posted, mainly due to a busy last few months but the 2021 hurricane season is upon us and it's already starting to make pre-official, start of the Atlantic Hurricane season waves.

90L has been designated for a closer look by the NHC as has been forecast in the last week or so by the long term genesis models. Located several hundred miles to the NE of Bermuda, it's forecast movement will be towards Bermuda with minimal impacts expected such as high waves, gusty winds and lashing rains but then is expected to pull back towards the NE with no threat to land masses while the shipping lanes will have a rough go.

This is not a tropical system but a potential sub tropical one with a large wind field, most thunderstorms and heavy convection displaced from the mainly cloud free "center" while being either warm or cold core. In essence, a hybrid of characteristics.

Tidbit: There is no such thing as a sub tropical hurricane for if their winds reach hurricane force, then that system would have evolved to become fully tropical.

That's it for now as breaktime is over. The first name on the board for this season is Ana. While it's a bit before the official start of the season, it's not too early to start preparations.

Be safe and prepared!



Maintained & moderated by: Gert van Dijken (
Weather discussions also by Dave McDermott, St.Thomas, USVI.

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