"Sandy" has turned into a "Superstorm" & will pound the Mid Atlantic & NE U.S. through midweek. It will take a long time for things to calm down, for clean up & to restore power. The anatomy of "Sandy, the Superstorm" is an interesting combination of the tropics -- what was hurricane "Sandy" -- an anomalous upper level ridge of high pressure near Newfoundland....& a strong upper level trough moving in from the west. As posted in "Talking the Tropics With Mike":
Just a quick diagnosis/discussion on why the First Coast was spared "Sandy". The track is/was related to the atmospheric set-up & not because of water temps. or our local geography. First of all...."Sandy" was a classic late season storm that developed in the Caribbean (climatalogically favored late in the hurricane season & an area to possibly watch near Nov. 10th). Because the jet stream is usually starting to dip farther south this time of year as we get deeper into autumn, Caribbean storms in Oct./Nov. typically are swept north &/or northeast as was the case with "Sandy". Intensity of such storms are usually greatest in & near the Caribbean because the water temps. are still plenty warm (85+) & shear is typically minimal. In Sandy's case, a weak upper low was located near Fl. so once "Sandy" moved from Cuba into the Southern Bahamas, the storm was steered north then northwest for a short time (Thu. night-Fri.) before the upper low weakened allowing "Sandy" to turn back to the north then northeast. So the weak upper low became the primary steering influence that kept the storm well east of Fl. A tropical storm watch/warning was issued for the Fl. coast because of the wide & expanding wind field to the northwest of the center though sustained tropical storm force winds never occurred anywhere on the First Coast. The next major steering mechanism for "Sandy" will be a large upper level high over the N. Atlantic & -- more importantly -- a strong & intensifying upper level trough of low pressure that will sweep into the Eastern & NE U.S. the next few days. This trough is the system that will draw "Sandy" back to the west & northwest with an eventual landfall between Chesapeake Bay & Boston early in the week as a large & intense hybrid storm system that will produce strong winds, heavy rain, flooding & heavy inland higher elevation snow. The map is below is the upper level forecast by the GFS model for early Mon. The dip to the west is the strong upper level trough that will "suck in" Sandy from east to west....the bright colored "ball" in the W. Atlantic is "Sandy" while a huge blocking upper level high pressure ridge is established near Newfoundland.
Photos below were sent to our Action News reporter Noel McLaren from a friend in NYC - Taylor Bouwmeester, Stuyvesant, NY:
On the underside of "Sandy", cool, dry air is flowing across the First Coast. Temps. will out bottom inland in the 30s with near record lows at JIA which is 37 degrees Tue. set in 2008 & 38 degrees Wed. (Halloween) set in 1993. The upside is we have some beautiful weather ahead with lots of sun & mild temps. Having said that....we are quickly drying out despite the rainy summer & early fall. A wildfire broke out on Black Hammock Island late Mon. & quickly grew to near 10 acres. The photo below is from Alex Hill & shows the glowing sky in the distance. Rainfall numbers tell the story:
* This month: -0.77" @ JIA
* The year so far: +3.50"
The yearly surplus of only a few inches shows just how dry it was the first 5 1/2 mo. of 2012. The very dry air/low humidity we have now will quickly dry the soil & vegetation & increase the wildfire danger.
Do you have a "bucket list"? I do. I've had the opportunity to be able to check off some of the items on my bucket list. I managed to check another one off the list Sun. when I was lucky enough to go with my wife to the Jags-Packers f'ball game in Green Bay. Having grown up in the midwest but now gone for some time, I had sort of left behind the classic autumn weather & good ol' midwest culture. There were still a few trees with fall color. There were leaves piled up in lines along the curbs through neighborhoods. And, of course, Lambeau Field is a veritable football Mecca. Oh those football fans. When you're approaching Lambeau, the town's streets are lined with homes where seemingly everyone is tailgating & cars are parked in yard after yard. As we left the game, the usher shook our hand & said "good game"...while we walked through the parking lot, a number of fans complimented us on the game, asked if we had a good time & even offered us food & beverage. There were no slurs or beligerent badgering, no threats, fights or anyone slitting someone's throat . It was great fun, pure fun, pure midwest, pure football. Check out a few of my photos below: