Saturday, June 06, 2015

Quick Update Re Blanca

Category 3 Hurricane Blanca is currently moving northwestward and will soon cross west of 120 degrees W and north of 20 degrees N (IR image above is from 3:30 pm MST). This means the storm will be be positioned well for triggering a Gulf Surge. Such events usually occur more quickly than indicated by the forecast models. The track forecast this afternoon by the NHC (below) is very similar to that forecast by the GFS model. I expect that PW will begin to increase dramatically over southern Arizona late tomorrow into Monday morning. A key question will be what degree of CAPE is present by Monday afternoon, since middle-level temperatures will be relatively warm. This morning's WRF-GFS forecast (composite radar echoes at bottom) develops strong thunderstorms into southeastern Arizona by 6:00 pm Monday afternoon. 

The GFS and NAM models continue to have dramatically different forecast solutions, with the GFS currently indicating substantially more impacts from Blanca for southern Arizona.

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