Monday, August 28, 2017

Where Will Harvey Go?

Now Tropical Storm Harvey now holds the record for the longest time remaining a named storm (i.e., with at least tropical-storm-force winds) after landfall in Texas.   At present, it is having a significant impact not only on Texas, but also southwest Louisiana, where the brunt of Harvey's randbands are currently moving onshore.  

Harvey is currently moving slowly southeastward and back over water.  It is expected to remain offshore through Tuesday, before making another landfall, somewhere along the northeast Texas Gulf Coast.  Although some strengthening is possible, Harvey is not expected to regain hurricane status prior to landfall.  

Nevertheless, it really isn't the wind, but the precipitation and flooding, that is the main issue with Harvey, and unfortunately he's going to continue to be a problem for Texas and Louisiana for the next few days (and longer in terms of recovery). 

Beyond that, Harvey is expected to move slowly up the lower Mississippi River basin, although the cone of uncertainty for the probable storm track is quite broad.  

Now, let me annoy mobile users with a very large loop, and perhaps violate all of my principles about extended range forecasts, by showing a GFS 10-day forecast loop (click to enlarge).  In this particular forecast, the upper-level trough spawned by Harvey is caught up in the circulation of the western ridge and, remarkably, slides eastward across the US-Mexico border, eventually reaching Baja and Southern California. 

Of course, if that were to happen, the main impact of Harvey would likely be to contribute to an increase in monsoon convection and precipitation.    

It's an interesting forecast, but it needs to be noted that Harvey is moving into an area of strong deformation where potential tracks are likely to "bifurcate" into two routes, one similar to the one above, another moving eastward.  Plus, there's always great uncertainty at such time ranges.  So, at present, I share this simply as a curiosity.  

Plus, I can note that the next 10 days, other than a brief system brush by later this week, Utah will be dominated by ridging.  Maybe some monsoon moisture can sneak in here or we get a thunderstorm for cooling, but for the most part, it looks like our hot summer weather will continue into early September.  

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