Gustav - Tropical Weather Discussion - Pensacola Fishing Forum

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Old 08-27-2008, 07:17 AM   #1
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Default Gustav - Tropical Weather Discussion

Their thought is a landfall west of the MS/LA border Monday Night or Tuesday as a Cat 3 or stronger<P align=center> <H1 align=center>Tropical Weather Discussion</H1><H3 align=center>Issued: Wednesday, August 27, 2008 600 am EDT</H3><HR><H3>Gustav has been hugging the north coast of southwestern Haiti early this morning with strong bands of thunderstorms to the east and south of the center. Maximum sustained winds have fallen overnight to 60 mph with a central pressure of 998 millibars. Little intensification is expected today and in fact I would not be at all surprised to see Gustav weaken a bit more this morning. The reason for this is due to Gustav's proximity to the high terrain of Haiti. By tonight and Thursday, however, a steady increase in strength is likely, especially after the center moves into the more open waters northwest of Jamaica by Friday. Wind shear values are forecast to be light, and combined with the deep warm waters of the northwest Caribbean, rapid intensification may occur on Friday into Friday night. I personally think Gustav will reach at least Category 3 strength on Friday and it is not out of the question for Gustav to reach Category 4 strength as it moves into the Yucatan Channel or very close to or over the western most tip of Cuba on Saturday. Beyond Saturday, the upper level winds in the Gulf of Mexico appear to be favorable enough to support a major hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico. It should be noted that both the GFDL and HWRF are very aggressive with strength in the Gulf of Mexico with the GFDL forecasting Gustav to reach nearly Category 5 strength in the Gulf of Mexico and the HWRF model forecasting Gustav to actually reach Category 5 strength in the Gulf of Mexico. I do think these two model forecasts are a bit extreme, however, I do think Gustav will be at least a Category 3 hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico on Sunday and Monday. </H3><H3>Gustav has moved little over the last couple of hours, however, an average track over the past twelve hours yields an estimated track of west-northwest at 5 mph. A turn toward the west is likely today as the storm bumps into a large high pressure ridge over the Bahamas and Florida. Gustav should then be steered around the southern portion of the high pressure system through Saturday and then turn northwestward in the Gulf of Mexico on Sunday and Monday. </H3><H3>Ok, here is my thinking for the future track and intensity of Gustav through Saturday night: It looks like the southwestern coast of Haiti has taken a decent toll on Gustav, but this means nothing in the long run with respect to a US landfall. This weakening actually may cause Gustav to track due west to the south of Cuba and north of Jamaica tonight into Thursday. Gustav is then forecast to track into the northwestern Caribbean to the northwest of Jamaica on Friday into Friday night where it is expected to rapidly intensify into at least a Category 3 and possibly a Category 4 hurricane as it nears the Yucatan Channel on Saturday. The overall pattern then points strongly to a storm entering the Gulf of Mexico via the western tip of Cuba or just missing it and tracking through the Yucatan Channel. I am sticking with my previous thinking and still believe that Gustav will track through the Yucatan Channel as a strong Category 3 or perhaps a Category 4 hurricane on Saturday and enter the southern Gulf of Mexico on Saturday night. All interests in the western and northwestern Caribbean should be aware that a very powerful and dangerous hurricane will be tracking through the northwestern Caribbean within the next 48 to 72 hours. </H3><H3>Looking beyond Saturday night and into next week, here is my thinking on the possible track and intensity of Gustav once it is in the Gulf of Mexico: The overall pattern in the Gulf of Mexico late this weekend into next week shows a potential upper-level low pressure system forming over the western Gulf of Mexico. If this materializes, then Gustav would track inland over the upper Texas coast or into Louisiana. However, if the current ridge of high pressure over Florida and the Bahamas is able to extend westward and strengthen, then Gustav would come ashore somewhere between Brownsville and Houston. At this point, I am going much more towards the idea of a upper Texas coast or Louisiana landfall, somewhere between the Louisiana-Mississippi border westward to Houston. As for timing, I think the GFDL model is way too fast in its track of Gustav in the Gulf of Mexico, therefore, I am going more towards the model consensus timing of potential landfall of between Monday night and Tuesday. Now for strength, all indications are that Gustav will be a major hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico and it should be assumed that it will make landfall as a major hurricane of at least Category 3 strength. All interests on the Louisiana and upper Texas coast should pay very, very close attention to the forecast of Gustav. </H3><H3>For the latest maps, graphics, advisories and any watches and warnings related to Gustav, please refer to our Gustav Page. </H3><H3>I will be monitoring this situation very closely and keep you all updated. </H3><H3>The next tropical weather discussion will be issued by 7 am EDT Thursday morning. No updates will be issued this evening due to prior commitments. </H3><H3>Click For Tropical Weather Information
</H3><H4>Prepared by Rob Lightbown, Crown Weather Services
All forecasts herein are made to the best ability of the forecaster. However, due to standard forecasting error, these forecasts cannot be guaranteed. Any action or inaction taken by users of this forecast is the sole responsibility of that user.</H4>
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