Category Archives: Eastern and Central Pacific

TCs between Mexico and Hawaii

Tropical Storm Xavier Causes Warning for Coast of Mexico

Potential impacts of Tropical Storm Xavier caused the government of Mexico to issue a Tropical Storm Warning for a portion of the coast.  The Tropical Storm Warning was in effect from Punta San Telmo to Playa Perula, Mexico.  At 1:00 p.m. EST the center of Tropical Storm Xavier was located at latitude 17.8°N and longitude 105.4°W which put it about 110 miles (175 km) southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico.  Xavier was moving toward the north at 6 m.p.h. (10 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 65 m.p.h. (105 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1003 mb.

An upper level trough is producing strong southwesterly winds which are blowing toward the top of Tropical Storm Xavier.  Those winds are causing significant vertical wind shear and they blew the upper portion of Xavier northeast of the lower level circulation earlier on Sunday morning.  However, new thunderstorms formed around the center of circulation and in a rainband northeast of the center.  There are several bands of showers and thunderstorms west of the center of circulation.  The bands southeast of the center consist primarily of low clouds and showers.  The strongest winds are occurring in the northeast portion of Tropical Storm Xavier.  Winds to tropical storm force extend out about 80 miles (130 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds are blowing to tropical storm force near the coast of Mexico which is why the Tropical Storm Warning was issued.

The future intensity of Tropical Storm Xavier will be determined by the strength of the upper level winds.  Xavier will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 28°C.  So, there is plenty of energy in the upper ocean to support a tropical storm.  However, the upper level winds were almost strong enough to shear Xavier apart on Sunday morning.  If the upper level winds do not get any stronger, then Xavier could persist as a tropical storm for another day or two.  If the upper level winds do get stronger, which is the forecast of many numerical models, then Xavier will quickly weaken to a tropical depression.  The official forecast from the National Hurricane Center follows the second scenario and it weakens Xavier to a tropical depression by Monday night.

The upper level trough will also determine future track of Tropical Storm Xavier.  If the upper level winds allow Xavier to persist as a tropical storm, then the trough will steer Xavier north-northeast toward the coast of Mexico.  If the upper level winds blow the top of the circulation away from the lower level circulation, then the winds closer to the surface would turn the lower part of Xavier back toward the west.  The official forecast from the National Hurricane Center follows the second scenario.

Bands of showers and thunderstorms in the northeaster part of Tropical Storm Xavier are already dropping rain over the coastal regions of Colima and Jalisco.  Prolonged heavy rain could cause flash floods in some locations.  Winds could reach tropical storm force along the coast even if the center of Tropical Storm Xavier does not make landfall.  There could also be a minor storm surge where the wind blows water toward the coast.

Tropical Storm Xavier Forms Southwest of Manzanillo

Tropical Storm Xavier formed southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico on Friday night.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Friday the center of Tropical Storm Xavier was located at latitude 14.5°N and longitude 108.2°W which put it about 405 miles (650 km) southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico.  Xavier was moving toward the east-northeast at 8 m.p.h. (13 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 40 m.p.h. (65 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1006 mb.

A center of circulation developed in an area of thunderstorms southwest of Mexico on Friday.  When more thunderstorms developed closer to the center of circulation on Friday night, the National Hurricane Center designated the system as Tropical Storm Xavier.  The core of Tropical Storm Xavier was small.  The inner part of a band of showers and thunderstorms was wrapping around the center of circulation.  Storms near the core were generating upper level divergence.  Other short bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the center of Tropical Storm Xavier.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 70 miles (110 km) from the center of circulation, but the strongest winds were occurring primarily in the southeastern quadrant of Xavier.

Tropical Storm Xavier will move through an environment somewhat favorable for intensification during the weekend.  Xavier will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 28°C.  So, there will be plenty of energy in the upper ocean to support intensification.  However, an upper level trough west of Xavier will produce strong southwesterly winds which will blow toward the top of the tropical storm.  Those winds will cause moderate vertical wind shear and they will inhibit upper level divergence to the west of Tropical Storm Xavier.  Xavier is likely to intensify on Saturday, but its small circulation means that it could weaken if the wind shear increases.

The upper level trough will also steer Tropical Storm Xavier in a north-northeasterly direction during the next day or two.  On its anticipated track the center of Tropical Storm Xavier could approach the west coast of Mexico by Sunday night.

Major Hurricane Willa Makes Landfall in Mexico

Major Hurricane Willa made landfall on the coast of Mexico between Teacapan and Mazatlan on Tuesday evening.  At 8:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Hurricane Willa was located at latitude 22.6°N and longitude 106.0°W which put it about 50 miles (80 km) south-southeast of Mazatlan, Mexico.  Willa was moving toward the north-northeast at 10 m.p.h. (16 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 120 m.p.h. (195 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 140 m.p.h. (220 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 965 mb.

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for the portion of the coast from San Blas to Mazatlan, Mexico.  Tropical Storm Warnings were in effect for the portions of the coast from Playa Perula to San Blas and from Mazatlan to Bahia Tempehuaya, Mexico.

An eyewall replacement cycle occurred in the core of Hurricane Willa on Tuesday.  When the original inner eyewall dissipated, the core of Willa was larger even though the maximum sustained wind speed was slower.  Winds to hurricane force extend out about 35 miles from the the center of Hurricane Willa.  Winds to tropical storm force extend out about 100 miles from the center of circulation.  The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Hurricane Willa is 22.1.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) is 12.7 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) s 34.8.  Hurricane Willa is capable of causing regional major damage.

Hurricane Willa will produce hurricane force winds along the coast between Tecuala and Mazatlan.  Those winds will be capable of causing major damage.  The winds will also push water toward the coast and a storm surge of 10 to 12 feet (3 to 4 meters) is possible.  Hurricane Willa will dissipate fairly quickly when it moves over the Sierra Madre Occidental Mountains.  However, Willa will drop locally heavy rain over the southern part of Sinaloa and over Durango.  The locally heavy rain is likely to cause flash floods in some locations.

Hurricane Willa Strengthens to Cat. 5, Poses Imminent Threat to Mexico

Hurricane Willa strengthened Monday morning to Category 5 on the Saffir-Simpson Scale and Willa poses an imminent threat to Mexico.  At 11:00 a.m. EDT on Monday the center of Hurricane Willa was located at latitude 19.1°N and longitude 107.2°W which put it about 135 miles (215 km) southwest of Cabo Corrientes.  Willa was moving toward the north at 7 m.p.h. (11 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 160 m.p.h. (260 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 190 m.p.h. (305 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 925 mb.

A Hurricane Warning was in effect for the portion of the coast from San Blas to Mazatlan, Mexico.  Tropical Storm Warnings were in effect for the portion of the coast from Playa Perula to San Blas and from Mazatlan to Bahia Tempehuaya, Mexico.

Hurricane Willa strengthened from a tropical storm to a Category 5 hurricane in 36 hours.  Willa is a small, very well organized hurricane.  There is a small circular eye at the center of circulation.  The eye is surrounded by a ring of strong thunderstorms and the strongest winds are occurring in that ring of storms.  Several bands of showers and thunderstorms are revolving around the core of Hurricane Willa.  Storms near the core are generating strong upper level divergence which is pumping mass away from the hurricane.

Hurricane Willa is a small hurricane.  Winds to hurricane force extend out about 30 miles ( 50 km) from the center of Willa.  Winds to tropical storm force extend out about 100 miles (160 km) from the center of circulation.  The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Hurricane Willa is 35.0.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) is 9.7 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) is 44.7.  The core of Hurricane Willa is capable of causing catastrophic damage.

Hurricane Willa will remain in an environment capable of supporting strong hurricanes for about another 24 hours.  Willa will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  It will move through an environment where the upper level winds are weak and there will be little vertical wind shear.  If an outer rainband wraps around the existing eye and eyewall, then an eyewall replacement cycle could cause Hurricane Willa to weaken.  An upper level trough near the West Coast of the U.S. will produce southwesterly winds which will blow toward the top of Hurricane Willa on Tuesday.  Those winds will cause vertical wind shear and the shear will start to weaken Willa.  Since Willa is a small hurricane, it will weaken faster than a larger hurricane would weaken.

Hurricane Willa will move around the western end of a ridge of high pressure over Mexico.  The ridge will steer Willa toward the north for another 12 hours or so.  Then the upper level trough will turn Hurricane Willa toward the northeast.  On its anticipated track Hurricane Willa will move over the Islas Marias on Tuesday morning.  Willa will reach the coast of Mexico between San Blas and Mazatlan on Tuesday afternoon or evening.

Hurricane Willa could still be a major hurricane when it reaches the coast of Mexico.   Willa will be capable of causing major damage.  The core of Hurricane Willa will bring damaging winds.  It will also produce a storm surge of 10 to 13 feet (3 to 4 meters) near where core of Willa makes landfall.  Hurricane Willa will drop heavy rain over Nayarit, Sinaloa and Durango.  The heavy rain could cause flash floods in some locations.

Elsewhere over the Eastern North Pacific Ocean, upper level divergence from Hurricane Willa appeared to be causing wind shear which was weakening Tropical Storm Vicente.  At 11:00 a.m. EDT on Monday the center of Tropical Storm Vicente was located at latitude 14.9°N and longitude 100.8°W which put it about 365 miles (590 km) southeast of Manzanillo, Mexico.  Vicente was moving toward the west-northwest at 12 m.p.h. (19 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 45 m.p.h. (75 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1004 mb.

Willa Rapidly Intensifies Into a Major Hurricane, Warnings Issued for Mexico

Hurricane Willa intensified rapidly into a major hurricane on Sunday and Warnings were issued for Mexico.  At 11: 00 p.m. EDT on Sunday the center of Hurricane Willa was located at latitude 17.7°N and longitude 107.2°W which put it about 210 miles (340 km) south-southwest of Cabo Corrientes, Mexico.  Willa was moving toward the north-northwest at 7 m.p.h. (11 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 145 m.p.h. (230 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 170 m.p.h. (275 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 941 mb.  Hurricane Willa was a Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Scale.

A Hurricane Warning was in effect for the portion of the coast from San Blas to Mazatlan, Mexico.  A Tropical Storm Warning was in effect for the portion of the coast from Playa Perula to San Blas.  A Tropical Storm Warning was also in effect for the portion of the coast from Mazatlan to Bahia Tempehuaya.

Hurricane Willa intensified from a tropical storm to a Category 4 hurricane in 24 hours.  A small circular eye formed at the center of Hurricane Willa.  The eye was surround by a ring of strong thunderstorms and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms.  Several bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of Hurricane Willa.  Storms near the core were generating strong upper level divergence which was pumping large quantities of mass away from the hurricane.  The strong divergence allowed the surface pressure to decrease quickly and that caused the wind speeds to increase rapidly.

Willa is a small hurricane.  Winds to hurricane force only extend out about 25 miles (40 km) from the center of Hurricane Willa.  Winds to tropical storm force only extend out about 90 miles (145 km) from the center of circulation.  The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Hurricane Willa is 29.9.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) is 8.2 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) is 38.1.

Hurricane Willa will move through an environment favorable for intensification during the next 12 to 24 hours.  Willa will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  It will move through a region where the upper level winds are weak and there will not be much vertical wind shear.  Hurricane Willa could strengthen to a Category 5 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Scale during the next 12 hours.  An upper level trough near the west coast of the U.S. will produce southwesterly winds which will start to affect Hurricane Willa in about 24 hours.  Those winds will cause vertical wind shear, which will cause Willa to start to weaken.

Hurricane Willa will move around the western end of a ridge of high pressure over Mexico.  The ridge will steer Willa toward the north on Monday.  The upper level trough near the west coast of the U.S. will turn Hurricane Willa toward the northeast on Tuesday.  On its anticipated track Hurricane Willa could make landfall on the coast of Mexico on Tuesday night.  Willa could be a major hurricane when it approaches the coast.  It will be capable of causing major wind damage and a significant storm surge along the coast.  Willa will also drop locally heavy rain and it could flash floods when it moves inland over Mexico.

Elsewhere over the Eastern North Pacific Ocean Tropical Storm Vicente was moving near the southeastern periphery of Hurricane Willa.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Sunday the center of Tropical Storm Vicente was located at latitude 13.9°N and longitude 98.7°W which put it about 220 miles (355 km) south-southeast of Acapulco, Mexico.  Vicente was moving toward the west at 10 m.p.h. (16 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 40 m.p.h. (65 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1005 mb.

Tropical Storm Willa Strengthens Quickly Southwest of Mexico

Only one day after the formation of Tropical Storm Vicente, Tropical Storm Willa strengthened quickly southwest of Mexico.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Saturday the center of Tropical Storm Willa was located at latitude 15.2°N and longitude 105.8°W which put it about 280 miles (450 km) south-southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico.  Will was moving toward the west-northwest at 6 m.p.h. (10 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 75 m.p.h. (120 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 999 mb.

Several bands of showers and thunderstorms wrapped tightly around a distinct low level center of circulation on Saturday and the National Hurricane Center designated the system as Tropical Storm Willa.  Willa continued to organize quickly on Saturday afternoon.  Bands of showers and thunderstorms formed and began to revolve around the core of Tropical Storm Willa.  Storms near the core started to generate upper level divergence which pumped mass away from the tropical storm.  The circulation around Tropical Storm Willa was still compact.  Winds to tropical storm force only extended out about 35 miles (55 km) from the center of circulation.

Tropical Storm Willa will move through an environment favorable for intensification.  Willa will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  It will move through an area where the upper level winds are weak and there will be little vertical wind shear.  Willa is likely to intensify into a hurricane during the next 24 hours.  It could intensify rapidly and there is a chance Tropical Storm Will could strengthen into a major hurricane during the next two or three days.

Tropical Storm Willa will move around the western end of a ridge of high pressure over Mexico during the next two or three days.  The ridge will steer Willa toward the northwest during the next 24 to 48 hours.  An upper level trough west of California will turn Willa toward the northeast in about 48 hours.  On its anticipated track Willa could approach the coast of Mexico in about fours.  Willa could be a hurricane when it nears the coast.

Elsewhere over the Eastern North Pacific Ocean, Tropical Storm Vicente also strengthened on Saturday.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Saturday the center of Tropical Storm Vicente was located at latitude 14.6°N and longitude 94.3°W which put it about 120 miles (200 km) south-southeast of Salina Cruz, Mexico.  Vicente was moving toward the west at 9 m.p.h. (15 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 65 m.p.h. (105 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1002 mb.

Small Tropical Storm Vicente Forms Southwest of Guatemala

Small Tropical Storm Vicente formed southwest of Guatemala on Friday.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Friday the center of Tropical Storm Vicente was located at latitude 13.3°N and longitude 92.2°W which put it about 110 miles (180 km) south of Tapachula, Mexico.  Vicente was moving toward the northwest at 2 m.p.h. (3 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 40 m.p.h. (65 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1005 mb.

Tropical Storm Vicente formed out of a tropical wave that almost produced a tropical depression over the western Caribbean Sea earlier this week .  An area of low pressure developed within the tropical wave, but the low moved over Honduras before it could organize enough to be designated as a tropical depression.  The low continued to organize once it moved over the Eastern North Pacific Ocean southwest of Guatemala.  A distinct low level center of circulation was evident on visible satellite imagery on Friday and the National Hurricane Center designated the system at Tropical Storm Vicente.

The circulation around Tropical Storm Vicente is very small.  Winds to tropical storm force only extend out about 35 miles (55 km) from the center of circulation.  Vicente does have a well developed center and a ring of thunderstorms surrounds the center of circulation.  Several short bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of Tropical Storm Vicente.  Storms around the core were generating upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the tropical storm.

Tropical Storm Vicente will move through an environment mostly favorable for intensification.  Vicente will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  It will move through an area where the upper level winds are weak and there will be little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Storm Vicente is likely to strengthen during the next 24 to 36 hours.  Northerly winds blowing across the Isthmus of Tehuantepec will transport drier air over the Gulf of Tehuantepec.  If the drier air enters the circulation of Vicente, then the tropical storm could weaken.  Since the circulation around Tropical Storm Vicente is so small, the tropical storm could intensify or weaken very rapidly if the environmental conditions change.

Tropical Storm Vicente will move around a ridge of high pressure over the Gulf of Mexico and Mexico.  The ridge will steer Vicente in a general westerly direction during the weekend.  On its anticipated track Tropical Storm Vicente will stay south of Mexico during the next 24 to 48 hours.  Vicente could move more toward the northwest early next week when it moves around the western end of the ridge of high pressure.

Tropical Storm Tara Develops South of Manzanillo

Tropical Storm Tara developed south of Manzanillo, Mexico on Monday.  At 11:00 a.m. EDT on Monday the center of Tropical Storm Tara was located at latitude 17.6°N and longitude 104.4°W which put it about 95 miles (155 km) south of Manzanillo, Mexico.  Tara was moving toward the west-northwest at 2 m.p.h. (3 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 45 m.p.h. (75 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1001 mb.  A Tropical Storm Watch was in effect for the portion of the coast from Punta San Telmo to Cabo Corrientes, Mexico.

The circulation around Tropical Storm Tara is still organizing.  More thunderstorms are developing near the center of circulation.  Several bands of showers and thunderstorms are beginning to form around the center.  Storms near the center are starting to generate upper level divergence which is pumping mass away to the east of the tropical storm.  The circulation around  Tropical Storm Tara is small.  Winds to tropical storm force only extend out about 35 miles (55 km) from the center of circulation.

Tropical Storm Tara will be in an environment somewhat favorable for intensification.  Tara will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  An upper level trough near Baja California will produce southwesterly winds which will blow toward the top of the circulation.  Those winds will cause some vertical wind shear which will inhibit intensification.  The wind shear will not stop intensification, but they will slow it.  Tropical Storm Tara will remain close to Mexico and there is a chance that drier air from land could enter the northern part of the circulation.  Tropical Storm Tara is forecast to strengthen gradually.  However, because the circulation around Tropical Storm Tara is small, it could intensify or weaken very quickly if the environmental conditions change.

Tropical Storm Tara will be in an area where the steering currents are weak for another day or two.  Tara is forecast to move slowly toward the west-northwest during the next 24 to 48 hours.  On its anticipated track Tropical Storm Tara will remain west of Mexico.  However, several forecast models predict that Tara will move more northward and make landfall west of Manzanillo.  The government of Mexico issued a Tropical Storm Watch for that portion of the coast in case Tara brings tropical storm force winds to the coast.

Tropical Storm Sergio Brings Rain to Baja California

Tropical Storm Sergio brought rain to Baja California on Friday morning.  At 8:00 a.m. EDT on Friday the center of Tropical Storm Sergio was located at latitude 26.8°N and longitude 112.8°W which put it about 45 miles (75 km) southwest of Santa Rosalia, Mexico.  Sergio was moving toward the northeast at 24 m.p.h. (39 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 45 m.p.h. (75 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 998 mb.

A Tropical Storm Warning was in effect for the west coast of Baja California from Punta Eugenia to Cabo San Lazaro, Mexico.  A Tropical Storm Warning was also in effect for the east coast of Baja California from Bahia San Juan Bautista to Mulege, Mexico.

Tropical Storm Sergio was weakening as it approached Baja California.  An upper level trough was producing strong southwesterly winds which were blowing across the top of Tropical Storm Sergio.  Those winds were causing strong vertical wind shear and they were in the process of blowing the middle and upper portions of the circulation northeast of the surface circulation.  A combination of strong vertical wind shear and passage over mountains on Baja California will case Tropical Storm Sergio to weaken quickly.

Tropical Storm Sergio will drop locally heavy rain over parts of Baja California and northern Mexico.  The greatest risk from Sergio is the potential for the locally heavy rain to cause flash floods.  The remnants of Tropical Storm Sergio could enhance rainfall in southeastern New Mexico, West Texas, and Oklahoma during the weekend.

Tropical Storm Sergio Cause Warnings for Baja California

Tropical Storm Sergio prompted the issuance of warnings and watches for parts of Baja California on Wednesday.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Tropical Storm Sergio was located at latitude 20.0°N and longitude 121.5°W which put it about 770 miles (1240 km) west-southwest of the southern tip of Baja California.  Sergio was moving toward the northeast at 16 m.p.h. (26 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 65 m.p.h. (105 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 80 m.p.h. (130 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 992 mb.

A Tropical Storm Warning was in effect for the portion of the coast from Punta Eugenia to Cabo San Lazaro, Mexico.  A Tropical Storm Watch was in effect for the portion of the coast from Bahia San Juan Bautista to San Evaristo, Mexico.

Tropical Storm Sergio weakened slightly on Wednesday, but the structure of the circulation remained well organized.  A large clear area at the center of circulation was the remnant of the eye that existed when Sergio was a hurricane.  The remnant of the eye was surrounded by a broken ring of thunderstorms and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms.  Several thin bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of Tropical Storm Sergio.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 140 miles (225 km) from the center of Sergio.

Tropical Storm Sergio will move over cooler water on Thursday.  An upper level trough west of California will produce southwesterly winds which will blow toward the top of the circulation.  Those winds will cause moderate vertical wind shear.  The combination of cooler water and more wind shear will cause Tropical Storm Sergio to weaken slowly.

The upper level trough will steer Tropical Storm Sergio toward the northeast during the next several days.  On its anticipated track Tropical Storm Sergio will reach Baja California on Thursday night.  Sergio will bring gusty winds, but locally heavy rain is a greater risk because heavy rain could cause flash floods.