First, a confession – I’m not feeling terrifically motivated to write up this forecast. As we stumble to the end of the 2010 hurricane season, there’s a lot dry air around, there’s a minor hurricane that’s taking a track that is typical only in the late season, and it’s clear that the season will end short of forecasted ACE (Accumulated Cyclone Energy).
Even the forecast for October 13-26:
We expect that the next two weeks will be characterized by average amounts of activity
does little to add motivation.
Note on the chart above that the average hurricane activity over this period is greater than the first two weeks of August, so average activity can be enough disrupt a nice fall day!
Hurricane Paula (I have to be a bit careful here, my wife’s name is Paula) looks to be traveling along Cuba’s mountains and hence should have a short life, and add little to the seasonal total ACE. Still, average activity over these two weeks is so low that “The average forecast is due primarily to Hurricane Paula.”
The only other forecast factor of interest is the Madden-Julian Oscillation, a global wave around the tropics, currently centered between the Indian and Pacific Oceans, an area where the MJO tends to inhibit Atlantic storm development.
That’s about it. The GFS weather forecast model apparently “is hinting at the development of a system in the western Caribbean in about five days.” So even the GFS isn’t very “enthusiastic” about the forecast.
As for the previous two week period, it “was somewhat of an over-forecast. We predicted above-average ACE (>13.8 units), while only 8.2 ACE units were observed.” Except for some activity around the peak, the season struggled to get going, and a premature end seems likely.
I see the folks on top of Mt Washington in New Hampshire are giddy over snow, sleet, freezing rain, and winds that reached 98 mph (160 Km/h, about the same speed as Paula). I’m beginning to share their sense of excitement over the coming winter even though it’s still autumn here in New Hampshire and the fall foliage is at near peak conditions south of the White Mountains.