Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Katia - in a pit stop

Katia appears to be losing a bit of its fury after revving up to Major Status over the holiday weekend. Even though it remains a well structured hurricane with good banding and outflow, its eye is no longer visible.

It is undergoing an eyewall replacement process, almost like a race car going through a pit stop and replacing its tires before going back out full throttle, this is similar to what is happening to Katia right now.  It should remain a major storm for at least another 24-48 hours before running out of fuel in the form of warm water.

Traffic will also get a tad more congested as upper winds will begin to move in and hopefully keep Katia away from the East Coast. As of this writing it should miss Bermuda.   OK, enough with the racing analogies... but you get the idea.

Its present movement has been a tad jerky. NHC described it as "EXHIBITING A TROCHOIDAL MOTION". This is terminology you don't hear about every day, but it's almost like a bicycle wheel where the eye of the hurricane rotates in a circle while the entire storm moves in a straight motion.

Even though it's moving Trochoidally, most models agree that Katia should track in between Bermuda and the US, being pushed back out to sea by a front and strong upper winds coming off the Eastern Seaboard. Once it loses its warm fuel supply it should weaken rapidly and ultimately be absorbed by the same front protecting the coast.

Here is the official forecast cone from NHC.


  1. thanks phil sure do apperchate u and the team here in spanish wells bah.

  2. Thank you. We try very hard to bring you the best forecast.. although Mother Nature always makes sure to get the last word! Thanks again.