Wednesday, October 19, 2005


Wilma 1

As you may already know, Wilma went from an 80-mph Category 1 on Tuesday afternoon to a monstrous Category 5 just 12 hours later. Never before in recorded history has a storm intensified so quickly, and has broken the 17 year record held by 1988's Hurricane Gilbert as the most intense Atlantic storm, dropping to 882 millibars overnight Wednesday. Having dropping from it's catastrophically fierce 175 mph, it is all but certain that Wilma will slowly weaken over the next 5 days, and may brush the Yucatan Peninsula at a Category 3 or 4 before taking aim on south Florida. The storm may also do a Lili or Isidore, and get hung up in the Yucatan, which would negate a lot of it's punch. The outcome hinges on the southeast movement of two upper-level low pressure troughs currently in the MidWest and Pacific Northwest, respectively. The real question becomes.. what can Wilma do if it crosses Florida and re-enters the Atlantic, even as a Category 1. Some computer model scenarios indicate the storm could hug the East Coast, and possibly even threaten New England by the middle of next week in a remake or hybrid version of the 1938 Hurricane. For now, Wilma is the 2005 version of the "October Surprise" and it is likely our expectations for this storm's path will continue to change by the hour. Wilma is warning us to stay on target.

With that in mind, I am back on focus with our storm after having bee remiss in updating this site for several days, so please accept my apologies. If you've been wondering the reason for my absence, let's just say I've been a bit pre-occupied following another big story that could far eclipse any natural event in our lifetime... the Bird Flu.


John said...

Noticed on the CSU forecast models that the CLP6 and XTR have the storm heading north into the Gulf Coast area...what is up with that?

Julee said...

Mr. Foot,

I just looked at the projected paths of both Wilma and Alpha on the Accuweather Hurricane site. It looks as though they have the two crossing paths off the Carolina coast on Tuesday.
What would happen if that came to pass? A MONSTER storm or a cancelling out?

E.H. Boston said...


The atmosphere as of Saturday holds potential for the development of a powerful storm off the Atlantic Seaboard of the United States early next week. While this would be true to some extent without the existence of Hurricane Wilma and the newly-dubbed Tropical Storm Alpha, which represent a great reservoir of tropical warmth and moisture, it only ratchets up the potential. Two players here are key. First, a sharply dipping jet stream will be thrusting southward from central Canada and tapping a cold pool to spin up low pressure south of the Great Lakes Sunday and Monday. The other player, none other than Hurricane Wilma, will pull away from Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula in time for a crossing of the Florida Peninsula Monday. It is Monday night and Tuesday when things could get crazy in the meteorological sense. The strong northeast-trending jet stream will scoop up Wilma, with possible contribution from Alpha, as the low shifts from the Appalachians to the coast. If Wilma were to follow the western edges of its forecast window and begin to draw in the cool low from the west, an explosive deepening could result, culminating in a deep and fully merged storm raging south of Nova Scotia Wednesday. While this is not the most likely scenario, it is one that is in the realm of possibility.



Terpboy said...

Two things:

ehboston-Watched "Fever Pitch" last night, brought back some great memories.

Mr. Foot-on EUSWx, a questioned was asked "what do you do when it snows", of course, I posted the address of my favorite, and most dependable Wx forecaster.

You and thank, or hate me, later.

Foot's Forecast said...

Terp I am honored! Just hope they won't be mad for a lack of updates recently.

Sorry for being Johnny Come Lately, I know we have Wilma heading for Tampa and Alpha on it's heels. Will get an update out later today.