Tue May 28 2013 05:41 PM
Record Setting Hurricane Barbara Landfalls

Tropical Depression #2 has formed in the Eastern Pacific today. TD2 is a healthy tropical cyclone that, if not for its close proximity to land, really looks like it could otherwise seriously take off.

TD2 grew out of an area of several competing disturbances that were all enhanced by the current phase of the MJO, or Madden-Julian Oscillation.

The MJO is a traveling intraseasonal feature in the tropics delivering what are effectively positive and negative pulses, respectively triggering alternating convective and stable phases.

At the moment, the convective, wet phase of the MJO is established over the far eastern Pacific, and is starting to exert its presence in the far western Atlantic. This is following a fairly typical pattern of the MJO - one can often watch it fire up tropical disturbances in the east pac, and expect to see some enhanced activity then push into the Gulf or Caribbean within a few weeks later.

The timing of the MJO's entrance into the western Atlantic is particularly interesting right now, as TD2 is forecast by several better models to actually head north-northeast, about into, if not across, the Isthmus of Tehuantepec in southern Mexico. Indeed, this is also the first official forecast from the NHC.

Should TD2, even if only as a post tropical cyclone or remnant circulation, make it across southern Mexico and into the Bay of Campeche during the enhanced, convective phase of the MJO, it will definitely become something to watch over here on the Atlantic side.

While not at all a common occurrence, as recently as 2008 the Atlantic's first named storm of the year, Arthur, was born in large part from the remnant circulation of an eastern Pacific tropical cyclone, Alma, that had entered the extreme western Caribbean by way of Central America.

Edits to reflect upgrade to named storm/hurricane, landfall status and record-setting status.

Wed May 29 2013 06:30 AM
Re: East Pac TS Barbara Approaching Land - Heads Toward Bay of Campeche


Tropical Storm Barbara has all the hallmarks of a tropical cyclone that, given just enough time over water, would likely become a very significant, and possibly major, hurricane, but Barbara is probably within a day of landfall.

As of 2AM PDT, Tropical Storm Barbara is now estimated to be a 60 MPH Tropical Storm, which could be conservative. Given this, coupled with Barbara's continued northeasterly motion, a track that is generally forecast to continue up to and through landfall, the government of Mexico has issued a Hurricane Watch from Puerto Angel to Barra De Tonala.

Below: Barbara at 9:15 UTC on 5/29/2013

Late Week Conditions for Barbara Redevelopment on Atlantic Side Possibly Set to Increase
While shear is still moderate to high over much of the western Atlantic, conditions for development out of the remains of Barbara - or its associated trough - appear to be increasing somewhat, such that by the end of the workweek things could have an opportunity to gel.

Already overnight, pressures have been falling throughout the Northwest Caribbean and Southwestern Gulf of Mexico. In addition, there is no doubt that moisture is on the rise in the Caribbean, and once the trough traveling through the middle of the CONUS starts to pull out, net effective shear may actually turn supportive in the GOM.

Wed May 29 2013 04:47 PM
Re: Hurricane Barbara Making Landfall - Heads Toward Bay of Campeche

As of 3:45PM CDT, Hurricane Barbara is now pushing inland, having made landfall on the coast of the Mexican state of Chiapas at 2:50 PM CDT. Very strong tropical storm to hurricane force winds and very heavy rain will continue for several hours. Over the next day or two, life threatening flash flooding will likely be the greatest risk.

Hurricane Barbara Sets Records
According to the NHC, Barbara has become the easternmost landfall for an eastern N. Pacific hurricane since reliable record keeping began in 1966, and is also the 2cd earliest hurricane landfall of reliable record.

(Veteran Storm Chaser)
Wed May 29 2013 06:09 PM
Re: Hurricane Barbara Making Landfall - Heads Toward Bay of Campeche

Curious on what the earliest landfall was... A very interesting hurricane to watch as she ramped up just before landfall and even more curious with the NRL track taking her into the Gulf. Forward speed has been impressive as well.

Another interesting weather event in an already interesting year.

Concerned on the added tropical moisture this will put into the Gulf that will stream north (even if it does not reform in the Gulf) that will flow into the heartland as the next "cold" front moves south. Ups the ante I would think fore another round of strong weather during the current Twister hunts. I say "tropical moisture" vs a real system. it is that warm, moist flow that has been moving north that has fueled the epic and tragic outbreaks there.

Wed May 29 2013 07:15 PM
Re: Hurricane Barbara Making Landfall - Heads Toward Bay of Campeche

I believe that the earliest hurricane landfall (hurricanes in the Pacific & Atlantic, so I am sure we are not considering typhoons and cyclones), would be the recently discovered Hurricane Amanda (1863).

I agree with you about the tropical feed xBarbara may play with this week's severe weather in the CONUS. On the other hand, should whatever is left of Barbara actually pull something together, it could serve to limit some of that inflow, keeping more of it locked in the Gulf.

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