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Continuing nudges west in Philippe's track prolonging heavy rains and tropical storm force winds in the Leewards
Days since last H. Landfall - US: Any 33 (Idalia) , Major: 33 (Idalia) Florida - Any: 33 (Idalia) Major: 33 (Idalia)
18.5N 62.9W
Wind: 50MPH
Pres: 1001mb
Nw at 8 mph
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Archives 2002-2009 >> 2002 Storm Forum

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Ed DunhamAdministrator
Former Meteorologist & CFHC Forum Moderator (Ed Passed Away on May 14, 2017)

Reged: Sun
Posts: 2565
Loc: Melbourne, FL
Tropical Storm Cristobal
      #1757 - Wed Aug 07 2002 01:29 AM

This is a tough one - more like a real nightmare. On the premise that your first forecast is usually your best, I'm going to stick with the large anticyclonic loop idea. Here is the 'scientific' rationale so far:
It was not supposed to intensify - it has.
It was supposed to move east, then northeast - it has moved south.
It would not threaten Florida - it is beginning to.
It would be ripped apart by the strong northeast shear - it is ripping apart the shear.
I'm sorry if you expected some real pearls of wisdom, but the truth of the matter is I'm not at all certain where this storm is going to eventually go. Sunday I didn't think that the developing offshore east coast trough would catch this system and I still don't. My hunch (and its really just that) is that Cristobal will continue its southerly movement with a turn more to the southwest then west and northwest as it completes the loop. As a 'trapped' system, this process could take about 3 days. As the trough slides east, the shear will relax and allow for additional intensification. Possible threat to the extreme northern Bahamas and the south and central Florida east coast - no landfall, but close enough for some rough weather. I'd hope to have a better idea by morning, but with this system I know better On a serious note, this is also a tough forecast for the folks at NHC. The models have done poorly with this system and will probably continue to do so for awhile. Sorry for the late update - I've been 'under the weather' for the past two days.
(Addendum: Some signs of an upper level center forming near 28.8N 77.3W. In the past 6 hours the center seems to be reforming southward rather than moving southward - another factor which really messes up any realistic attempt at forecast movement.)

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Ed DunhamAdministrator
Former Meteorologist & CFHC Forum Moderator (Ed Passed Away on May 14, 2017)

Reged: Sun
Posts: 2565
Loc: Melbourne, FL
TS Cristobal - Update
      #1792 - Wed Aug 07 2002 09:17 PM

Cristobal continues to go against conventional wisdom. After remaining quasi-stationary most of the day, during the past three hours the center has once again started a southward movement, perhaps even slightly west of due south, at about 6mph. With IR imagery its tough to pinpoint the center but NASA loops suggest a 00Z location at 29.6N 75.6W. Convection remains displaced to the east of the center. This is also the timeframe during Cristobal's daily cycle when regeneration has started and there is some hint of the convection trying to build in a little closer to the center - although I don't think that it will fully make it before being blown off to the east and northeast again. The digging trough has not yet captured the system but it is certainly drawing in some drier air in the upper levels to the west of the center. The slight nudge to the west of due south could be the start of an anticyclonic loop but its still too early to verify that event - might also be just a resumption of the southerly drift. Intensification in the near term is not likely, but on-shore showers and off-shore waterspouts will continue to develop (Melbourne radar hinted at a couple of low-topped waterspouts in the past hour). At this rate, Cristobal could even become extra-tropical in place, but that probably depends on what the convection does tonight and tomorrow.

While I'm at it, TD Bertha at 00Z was located near 28.7N 93.7W and continues a west southwest movement. Although I would not expect anything major, it is still quite possible that Bertha will slowly regain TS status. Its movement should keep most of its activity (if there is any which develops) south of the Houston area (but I'll defer to Greg B. on that call).

For those that inquired, yes I was sick for a couple of days - doing much better today

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