Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Hurricane Rina

Hurricane Rina slowly drifting towards the Yucatan. (NOAA Image)

We have been given a reminder that the 2011 hurricane season is not quite over yet. As a matter of fact it has about 5 weeks to go and we have a rapidly developing nasty little hurricane in the Caribbean Sea east of Honduras heading towards the southern Gulf of Mexico this morning. Rina has wind speeds of 100mph making her a category 2 storm. Indications are that the storm will further intensify today and become a major hurricane. The storm is located about 335km southwest of Grand Caymen Island and slowly drifting towards the west northwest. The Government of Mexico has posted a Hurricane Watch for the east coast of the Yucatan Peninsula including Cancun and Cozumel. The storm is forecast to brush the coastline later this week before heading northeast towards Cuba. It is way too soon to forecast if it will affect Florida or the US mainland at this time.

Wild weather is expected across the Western US during the next 24 hours. A potent storm is gathering steam and is expected to become the seasons first snowstorm for portions of the Rockies. Winter Storm Warnings are in effect for much of the inter mountain west including metro Denver. Now just think, Denver hit a record high of 81F yesterday while they were under a winter storm watch. That has since been upgraded to a warning with 6 to 10 inches of snow expected by Wednesday morning. Temperatures are around 57F this morning but will continue to fall to below freezing tonight and remain there on Wednesday in the snow.

That system is forecast to approach the east coast by the weekend with rain and snow possible in New England. Computer models are all over the place this week, so forecaster confidence is low. The best we can do for Montreal and southern Quebec is to tell you to expect near or slightly below normal temperatures into the weekend with a chance of showers early today and again on Thursday. There is a chance of a rain/snow mix by the weekend. In between expect sunshine and cooler temperatures for Wednesday and again Friday. Overnight lows will be below freezing into the weekend.

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