Quote: I don't think Irma will continue to burrow WSW as deeply as last 12 hours for several reasons. First, historic tracks for the hurricanes of the similar strength in the same part of the Atlantic basin (though not many) did not continue south of due west. Second, the ridge north of Irma that has nudged her south of west appears to have a bit of weakness a few degrees either side of 50W, This very subtle weakness along the "belly" of the Bermuda high could allow her to track above 17N a bit longer during the next 24 hours. If this pans out, Irma may not bottom out at 16.4N as currently forecast in 36 hours.
Maybe, it's sometimes hard to tell if the upper air is exactly as analyzed, particularly without any real world soundings available. The big test will be when the Gulfstream does datasampling around Irma to get better data for the models to ingest. I think the first one will be taking off tomorrow afternoon.
-------------------- M. S. Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Georgia Tech - May 2020
Brookhaven National Laboratory, Feb 2022
U. Arizona PhD program starting August 2022
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