Tuesday, August 1, 2006


Chris 1

Foot's Forecast is officially back on line after the longest hiatus since... well, ever. No I didn't catch the bird flu or head to my bug out station. I just didn't want to expend valuable brainpower on wimpy little storms, and had to finish our new deck in the backyard before the season got going. So in that sense Chris's timing is good, but as Han Solo would say, "I have a bad feeling about this." My kickoff statement on this storm is that Chris will be unpredictable, confound the experts, and full of surprises right to the very end. He already has thrown a monkey wrench into the NHC official forecast twice in the past 24 hours, and I suspect that is only the beginning. My meteorological gut tells me this has Southern Florida and the Western Gulf written all over it, and I'll explain why soon. Based on the intensification trend thus far, we might be looking at a hurricane by Wednesday evening.

The short list on Chris is:
1. Will be a hurricane in 24 hours
2. Will not dissipate as NHC and models originally projected, due to presence of large Bermuda high and other upper-level factors skewing model initialization of the storm.
3. Will probably enter Gulf by hook or crook as borderline major hurricane (or if crossing Florida, baseline Cat 1)
4. A turn up the SE coast unlikely due to overpowering influence of the heat wave death grip high pressure ridge
5. A landfall along the Gulf Coast as a major hurricane looks likely if the storm limits interaction with land and is able to squeeze through the Florida straits just like our friends from last year, Katrina and Rita.

Who's at most risk?
Based on the analysis above, I would put the landfall zone from west of the Mississippi Delta over to Corpus Christi, Texas. Arrival time: sometime next Wednesday or Thursday.

Monday, March 20, 2006


Go back and read the post immediately preceding this one to see that I did leave a little window open for future snow in March, and the first day of Spring is certainly not anything like it, as was indicated in the March 6 post. I will do an overview of the situation at hand as soon as time and my daughters permit... but now that I see NWS Baltimore saying a high of 35 F in DUNDALK with snow and sleet, I may have to reevaluate the forecast for school tomorrow. I know many of you do not live in Dundalk of course, or are not teachers, but the impact to school systems is the bellweather indicator for the potential disruption a storm can deliver. This looks to be no more than a nuisance storm, but timing and temperatures are troubling so I will take another look at this as soon as I can. Check back after dinner.

Monday, March 6, 2006

sort of...

It is obvious to anyone following the weather that the chances of any more significant accumulating snow in the Mid-Atlantic this winter will have come and gone by the time you read this. I am not letting New England out the woods yet for another 6 weeks, as there have been many a storm in late March and even early April which have blanketed our friends in the North with 1-2 feet of heavy wet snow even into late April (for example, 4-23-86, remember that one?)

I say "sort of" because while I agree with everyone that an active southern jet and increasing sun angle will rule the day more often than not from here on out...there have been a few unusual years, like March 1958, when bizarre late season storms have dumped heavy snow in confined areas. I doubt something like that storm will occur, but I still see the possibility of a few flakes from time to time in the next several weeks, other than the flake writing this. The false warmup late this week will only make more painful the likely snap back to cold that is sure to follow it, resulting in the first day of Spring not feeling anything like it.

As for storm prediction, this post will close the book for now on the 05-06 winter, which I warned as early as last summer would be disappointing, with most of the snow coming in one or two big storms. I know I wrote that somewhere in a post way back when. From this point forward, the focus on this site will shift to the upcoming hurricane season, and the (let's hope not) the upcoming threat of avian influenza, which will be landing in a backyard near you this spring and summer.