Isabel's landfall along North Carolina coast on September 18, 2003
Although this past week marked the 5 year anniversary of Isabel and it's destructive impact on the Chesapeake Bay region, that storm will continue to serve it's main role: reminding us and preparing us for the "real one" which I believe has yet to arrive. The pattern looming before us in the week and month ahead pose a larger question I seek to resolve each year: Is this the year of a "Hazel-like" pattern? The atmosphere has already left behind clues to it's later intentions...Hanna's recurvature through the Mid-Atlantic, Ike and Gustav both following relatively similar tracks, and now the potential for a coastal crawler this weekend.
For those of you receiving this update via the Feedblitz email service, please know so in the procedure I follow developing situations is to first post an initial update, and then add graphics and supporting details throughout the week.
My line of thinking for this next tropical system: No Escape. The sprawling High pressure ridge parking over the coastal Northwest Atlantic I believe will lock in a landfall between the Delmarva Peninsula and New England. Depending on the speed, this may occur Friday night or Saturday morning. Once Kyle is officially named, there will be little time let before watches and warnings are issued if the GFDL model projection above is to be believed. (Thanks to alert reader Mr. B for reminding me of the link). As you can see from the model map to the right, two of the most reliable models continue to advertise a northwest tracking system approaching the Chesapeake Bay from the southeast. Combine that with the increased pressure gradient that will develop and tropical or not, we will have ourselves quite the gale along Mid-Atlantic from Friday through Sunday. Should the GFDL scenario play out, this storm has huge implications for significant and prolonged surge, major tidal flooding, beach erosion. I know some of you may feel this feels like more crying for the wolf that was not Hanna, but this track is far more dangerous and warrants early notification and constant monitoring by all coastal interests.