"Instant Replay" – Watch hurricane Harvey explode from a tropical depression to a Cat 4 hurricane

We live in unprecedented times. It used to be that satellite images were sent via WeFax…now, we can look at the “instant replay” in a matter of minutes after Harvey is downgraded to a tropical storm. Images and video from NOAA GOES-16 data.


74 thoughts on “"Instant Replay" – Watch hurricane Harvey explode from a tropical depression to a Cat 4 hurricane

  1. Two days ago, all the predictions were that Hurricane Harvey was going to sit there off the coast and pound Texas with rain. Last night Harvey proceeded directly on shore. Y’know, if the weather guessers can’t predict the weather two days out, perhaps they shouldn’t be trying to predict the climate in 2100.

  2. I seem to be having trouble watching the video. It tells me, “This video is private.”, whenever I click on it.

  3. Anthony, don’t do a Gore with !# exploding hurricanes #!
    it was a tropical depression that developed into a cat 4 that made landfall & has subsequently been downgraded.
    Glad to see you back, hope you’ve recharged your battery, thanks from UK for all you do.
    Video is not available ????

  4. The path predictions for Harvey vary a great deal depending on which model is used, looking like a near drunkard’s walk.

    • Light to nonexistent steering winds, makes it very difficult to forecast once it stalls.
      In the past, we have seen storms linger for days while the forecasts were calling for it moving out.
      Alison comes to mind as a storm which stayed over Texas for a very long time and caused a lot of flooding, even though it was only a T/S.
      Tropical storms seem to drop immense rains more frequently that hurricanes do.

  5. Joe Bastardi and the team at WeatherBell have been warning about higher than normal water temps close into the US Gulf and East coasts and the potential for approaching tropical storms to rapidly develop into significant hurricanes close to shore. Looks like Harvey is ‘first confirmation’ for their predictions!

  6. I don’t need to be reminded how quickly Harvey changed. I left sunny Michigan two days ago to come here to Southern Texas for outdoor activities. I’m now watching a tropical storm through the window, with rain at times falling at an inch per hour.

    • what do the colors stand for

      Joel – those colors are a scale for the temperatures. The warmer colors are grey (near surface) then get colder from white to blue, green yellow, red & black. The reds/blacks are toward -60F to -80F & these show the taller colder cloud tops.

  7. While Harvey inflicted serious damage in Port Aransas and Rockport… and flooding is still a serious concern… Centerpoint Energy is the grid operator in the Houston area…
    I commute from Dallas to Houston every week. Thursday afternoon, I was convinced that Houston would be shut down on Friday and I wouldn’t be able to get back Sunday afternoon. Now it looks like business as usual next week.
    With hurricanes, erring on the side of hype is usually OK. Harvey appears to be headed toward “boy who cried wolf” territory.

    • David, I’ve been hunting pictures all day…I can’t find one picture that looks like a Cat 4
      …not even close

    • “erring on the side of hype is usually OK.”
      That has already backfired on them big time. After someone has gone through 3-5 days of evacuation hell…then finally get back home…and find your house and neighborhood are just fine
      …a couple of those and they won’t do it again

      • In teaching hurricane preparedness in Florida for 25 years, we always told coastal residence that they would likely have to evacuate 4 times for every time they were actually hit by the bad part of the storm. That is simply the nature of the beast. Harvey wobbled a little north before landfall, keeping Corpus Christi away from the eyewall. A track 25 miles to the south and the pictures would be a whole lot worse.
        Houston was never a target for strong winds, and there are a lot of comments suggesting that the storm has been hyped. To my recollection, the biggest threat for Southeast Texas has always been expected to be flooding. We are only about 25% through the rain event, and Houston has already picked up about 6″ of rain. I would not plan on driving to Houston this week.

  8. Very similar to Katrina, which was barely a Cat 1 after crossing the Atlantic and passing the Keys. Then it tracked a warm current that came from the Carribean into the Gulf and it rapidly gained strength. I don’t remember anyone who claimed (or could have claimed) that Katrina would just keep following that current. Laughingly, the global warming morons claimed Katrina’s strength due to “a warmer Atlantic Ocean”. I get the strong feeling that we are dealing with (slow-witted) children

    • According to NOAA:
      PORT ARANSAS 2 ENE 132
      LAMAR 2 SSW 110
      ROCKPORT 1 S 108
      TAFT 5 NNE 90
      EDNA 73
      FLOUR BLUFF 4 ESE 72
      ARANSAS PASS 7 SE 71
      BRAZOS 451 70
      GANADO 7 S 64
      LA WARD 64
      BAYOU VISTA 13 E 61
      QUINTANA 1 NE 58
      JONES CREEK 9 SW 55
      LA MARQUE 2 E 55
      FREEPORT 1 ESE 54
      SAN LEON 19 E 54
      WEBSTER 53
      NASSAU BAY 52
      TEXAS CITY 4 ENE 52
      So what does this mean? CAT 4 in one place for a brief period of time?
      Source: http://www.wpc.ncep.noaa.gov/discussions/nfdscc1.html

      • These are peak gusts, none are in Cat 4 , so it follows sustained winds wont be in Cat 4 either ( 130-156 mph)
        For offshore wind speed I understand bouys are used

      • The Earth Wind Map is more in accordance with the values quoted by NOAA than anything I have heard on USA or International news bulletins.
        The unreliability or falseness of the media must be nearing a “tipping point”.
        That is the point at which we should all throw a bucket of sh*t over them.

      • You said “SELECTED PEAK WIND GUSTS ”
        Winds sustained for 1 minute are required.
        So far I have not seen that. Carla on the 60s was a stronger storm.

      • It feels like MBAs are working at NOAA. “then rounded to 5-mph and 5-km/h increments, so as not to suggest that the intensity of the storm can be known to unrealistic precision (e.g., 127 mph!)”. So the new numbers are for Cat 4 113-136 kt (209-251 km/h), Cat 5 137 kt or higher (252 km/h or higher). Unrealistic precision decisively defeated.

    • Wind speed drops off rapidly as you get away from the eyewall. To get the peak wind on a ground measurement you pretty much need an anemometer on a barrier island where the eyewall hits.
      And one that can withstand those speeds. Most can’t.

      • …so that would mean earlier hurricanes were likely stronger then their records indicate.
        There are lots of wind gauge readings, and they all survived and zero indicate Cat 4 at landfall. Same with ocean buoy readings. And Cat 4 strength via ground observations after are not seen either.

    • Getting facebook feeds from those still there is probably more useful. Richmond’s flooded pretty badly, and Katy took a couple of Tornados. Glad to be out of town when it hit.
      The rain has been falling as far North as Waco all day.

  9. This truck driver just had a fleetwide message come over the qualcom stating that I-35 southbound is closed due to weather in the vicinity of Waco, TX. Since most dispatchers are lazy idiots when it comes to communicating such information, the message did not say how far south the closure extends.

  10. At 0.10 there’s no center. By 0:12 there’s a definite center as if from nowhere building rapidly. I wonder if a butterfly flapped it’s wings at 0:11. Truly awesome.

  11. The hurricane was such a damp squib that the catastrophiles are already retreating from direct observation to the much more familiar and comfortable world of dystopian projection. Now the storm is “to” cause disastrous flooding. “To” distract attention from the no-show of all the extravagant prognostications of hurricane disaster.

  12. Are Hurricanes suffering from severe inflation, as you don’t seem to get anywhere near as much Hurricane for your money, oops I mean rating these days.
    I doubt if this one was even a Cat 3 let alone a 4, which our host seems happy to call it along with all the MSM.

    • AC Osborn – “I doubt if this one was even a Cat 3 let alone Cat 4”
      Arguably, you are correct. The highest actual measured wind speed from any NOAA weather coastal buoys/staions was 49.4m/sec, 110.4mph, which is just below the 111mph threshold for a Cat 3. This measurement was made at ANPT2 station at Aransas Pass, http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/ . But the anemometer height at that station is 14m above the surface. The current NOAA definition for storm strength is wind speed at 10m above the surface and is an “estimation” (prior to Nov. 2015, it used to be just “surface”). So the estimated value for 10m wind speed should have been adjusted down. But if you check, you will see that NOAA’s “derived”/”estimated” 10m wind speed was actually higher than the 14m measured wind speed. That is a backwards adjustment. This can be verified by clicking on the Aransas Pass yellow diamond on the above map, then clicking on “Real Time Data”, then clicking on the “Real time standard meteorological measurements” & the “Real time derived measurements data” links. The most recent 45 days worth of 6 minute data is available there. It appears that older data is only hourly.

  13. Hurricane Carla was a Cat 4…
    175 mph (282 km/h) in Port Lavaca, 160 mph (260 km/h) in Matagorda, and 150 mph (240 km/h) in Aransas Pass,
    Harvey with peak gusts 45 mph lower, was a Cat 2 at best.
    Carla also spawned over 40 tornadoes and was not only far stronger, but larger.

  14. Based on what I’ve seen of surface damage and measured wind speeds I don’t think Harvey was a cat 4 at landfall. The drought in major hurricanes hitting the US may well be unbroken.

  15. Mods–seems that my posts over the past couple of weeks have disappeared into cyber space–have I violated protocol, or otherwise done something wrong?? Just wondering

  16. Another frustratingly cut weather imagery loop. The never start early evough, never play out thoroughly. Most of the time cannot even make out general direction of storm system movement. Cannot stand to watch them on the tube anymore, they’re so herky-jerky.
    Yah, I know, would require more bits, more bandwidth, etc. Still!

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