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August 2017

[Thursday Evening] Irma Already a Powerful Hurricane – Still Many Days from the Caribbean

   Posted by Levi at 11:08pm on August 31, 2017




  • Jillian Ricard says:

    Thank you! Great website and videos.

  • Teresa Torres says:

    Thank you so much for explaining that so well ….love tropical tidbits …accurate and sincere

  • Ken says:

    Thank you

  • Bryan says:

    Levi I see so many sites with the spaghetti models where can I find them on your site?

  • Andrew Reece says:

    I really enjoy your blogs and appreciate you downplaying the “hype train” that seems to roll through social media every time the GFS and Euro start spitting out wild solutions 7-10 days out. As a meteorologist myself, I share your frustration and have been steering as many people as I can to your website (and away from Facebook) for a legitimate and educational tropical discussion. Thank you for what you do.

  • Maria Shelby says:

    Levi’s website Tropical Tidbits is the first place I go for Hurricane and storm related information. He lays out visually and explains what we’re looking at in a very detailed manner that everyone can understand. Levi has a calmness about him while, at times, news may not be. His cadence remains steady throughout his reports – from the beginning to the end and from the start of the wave until run is over. Thank you Levi for your expert analysis.

  • Jim says:

    Thank you for your website and insights! I found you from twitter links from another weather site. I must say your information and presentation of your analysis is a breath of fresh air. Thanks and keep it up! Fantastic. Thank you.

  • Fran Becker says:

    As always Levi, we thank you for keeping it real. There have been countless times where we get blindsided by various forecasts and you bring us back to the reality of long term tropical forecasting.

  • Duane says:

    Good discussion–thanks for your update.

  • harrycane says:

    Thank You Levi !! Fantastic explaination

  • cj38 says:

    Thank you, Levi. I appreciate the way you explain the systems and interactions at hand. You speak without causing fear, your information is most helpful; honest and sincere. Thanks!

  • Margaret says:

    I just discovered your site Levi, and as a Floridian, I wish I had known about you a long time ago. Your videos are insightful and enlightening. Thank you so much for putting in the time to make these.

  • Michael Sphar says:

    Thanks again Levi. You have such a gift. This one is very concerning. I’ll be flying down to San Juan on Sunday, just in case I can do something to better prepare my boat down there.

    Your analysis is a wonderful compliment in my mind to NHC and satellites info.


  • JK says:

    Really Terrific stuff. You are calm and that is most appreciative.

  • FEMA Floodguy says:

    Day 5 NHC forecast location of a large 140mph cyclone just east of the Lesser Antilles is very worrisome.

  • Greg goodman says:

    Thankyou levi you are very smart hurricane explained things were people can understand it.

  • Brian says:

    Levi, I really appreciate your help in parsing the information embedded in models. I feel like you help me peek behind the veil of the NHC forecasts and discussions. Specifically, I appreciate you stressing that we have little certainty about the position of Hurricane Irma (and the atmospheric conditions steering her) past five days. Thanks for your measured words and analysis.

  • FishOutofWater aka George says:

    Note that Irma has tracked south of NHC’s expected track and the track predicted by the GFS. It’s not taking the tracks that would be expected based on historical data. The subtropical ridging is very strong right now in the Atlantic. This is bad news because historically storms in this location are likely to stay out to sea. The strong subtropical ridge is making landfall in the U.S. or Canada more likely.

  • Reid says:

    Conservative is fair on this one, but some discussion on the unusual position and strength would be nice.

  • stan chaz says:

    Interesting that some forecast models also should a smaller storm to the southeast of Irma approaching the Antilles just as Irma possibly threatens the Bahamas and beyond.
    Might they both influence each other, or at least cause the storm to the south to be perhaps weaker than otherwise if it tracks through the same waters? Or …an unusual double threat?

  • Christian Kamrath says:

    Great analysis and summary. Thanks!!

  • Adrian says:

    Thanks y’all. The best EASY to understand videos!

  • Nick says:

    Only recently discovered this site – very impressed with the format and sensible presentation after the increasingly unhelpful comments on Dr Masters blog. Excellent job – sadly I shall be following closely because I am sitting in the northern Leewards with a house , boat and business all at risk in the event of a close pass.

  • Doug Hammer says:

    Thank you, we are scheduled to fly tomorrow morning to Saint John and it looks like the European model is telling us not to BUT we want to believe the GFS!! AHHHHH, decisions to make. We will continue to monitor your site and make a sound decision. Not looking good for us! Thank you for such a great site.

  • Robert says:

    The problem I am having, and maybe other posters too, is a clear cut or better screen that shows exactly where, if any, wind sheer is or could be out there! The ones I’ve seen all seem to be either ambiguous or almost impossible to read! I guess what I’m saying is we need a better “wind sheer” map that shows us if some or any wind sheer is going to affect these systems that are coming through!

  • Robert says:

    Also, what is considered a “fast moving” hurricane? Harvey was bad, very bad, because it practically stalled or was moving at 1 or 2 miles per hour! So in you expert opinion, what is classified or considered to be a fast moving hurricane…..10, 15 or 20 miles an hour?

  • Jason Crockett says:

    Hi Levi, great analysis as always! I am wondering if the above normal sea surface temperatures in the Atlantic basin often create greater pressure heights on the Bermuda High ridge than the global models typically forecast and often push tropical systems further west. I remember you touched on this last year. Would like to hear you touch on that again if you think that may be an influencing factor this year.

    Good day Sir!

    • Levi says:

      SSTs can indeed impact steering currents averaged over a long period of time, and it’s possible that the Bermuda ridge has extended farther west so far this year in part due to the warm west Atlantic. But hurricane season steering currents depend on many things, and it’s hard to draw any solid conclusions.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi Levi, thanks for the excellent website and informative explanations. I`m in Puerto Rico, looking very closely the track on Hurricane Irma. Hoping will not reach the Islands!!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m in Puerto Rico too! I guess it all comes down to monitoring the low pressure area right above us and its impact on Irma’s west-southeast route. Levi could you brief us on the historical odds that Irma could be pushed further south? Or is it too early to tell?

  • Bug says:

    Will be visiting more often, esp. now that the Cape Verde season has ramped up. I’ve always respected your acumen re: ‘cane watching.

  • carey says:

    Thank you very much, Levi! Your site is great – just the information I was looking for as I track the storm from the Virgin Islands. I very much appreciate you providing a full explanation. It’s so much better when the “why” is provided.

  • BRIN says:

    It’s best hurricane info I read TKS to do that this can save live if every one trake care and don’t play with mother nature.Give us all you can to see the right way to take for a major like IRMA.

  • Thomas Rumsey says:

    Keep up your great work.

  • Ryan in CFL says:

    Awesome info as always Levi! We just returned home to Florida from the BVI’s and were concerned for Harvey prior to leaving. Now home and Irma has our full attention. We lived by your forecasts, with hurricane Matthew last year, all the way up until he made the turn away from Cape Canaveral, and we were spared just as the power went out!

    Keep up the great work, I send everyone I know in Florida, the link to your site.

  • harrycane says:

    Levi, If the storm grows stronger, is it more likely to curve northward? I have heard in the past of storms that if they remain weak it is more likely to have a greater westward component while the stronger ones curve north. Fact or fiction? Thank You !!

    • Levi says:

      That’s a rule of thumb which is often true, but not always. This is one of those times that it probably doesn’t work very well. Irma’s current strength may actually be helping it to move farther south, because the southward-directed steering flow is found higher up in the atmosphere right now.

  • Sam says:

    Hi Levi,

    As always, thanks for a well-detailed forecast. I understand it’s incredibly uncertain to predict 5+ days in anticipation, but as a resident in the Dominican Republic, I am hoping this go far north away from us. Based on the current forecast, do you think there’s a reasonable amount of chance this doesn’t hit us?


    • Levi says:

      A reasonable chance? Absolutely, since all models are currently north of Hispaniola. Of course, that could change, but it’s an encouraging forecast for you at the moment.

  • Erin says:

    What are the chances this will impact FL? Looks like the Euro models have it going towards FL and as we know, that model has always been spot on in predicting landfall.

  • Sam says:

    Hopefully, that doesn’t change much!

    Thanks for the reply

  • Chris says:

    Thank you Levi,, I also live in the Dominican Republic and your information is an outstanding help here.. I am at the tip of the spear in Punta Cana and have been preparing for 2 days.

  • Scott76 says:


    Looking at the models it appears the trough is lifting out by next Thursday. Is it possible for an fairly weak upper level low in the Ohio valley to pull this storm poleward?

  • Joey B. says:

    If anyone is interested these are Hurricane Harvey souvenirs. I’m trying to help family in a small way who lost vehicles, and all their furniture, along with the flood damage cleanup,& repairs.

  • PinkFreud says:

    From back in the WU days gone by. So proud of you! You are one of my go to people when the tropics are acting up.
    formerly Nola2005

  • Anonymous says:

    Thank you Levi!!! Gosh, always trusted your forecasts on WU, and now that WU is filled with so many trolls I’m thankful for this site!!

  • Abel soares says:

    Levi a wonderful forecast and very easy to follow. How often do you issue your forecasts?

  • Sharon says:

    Love your site. Just found out about it and now look every day. Thanks for your hard work. Praying this hurricane dies. Have so much family in east Texas. So sad. Now live in Midwest and hoping East coast isn’t hurt. ?

  • nana jan says:

    What are the chances of a hurricane hitting Florida or the Bahamas the week of 10/01/17? Is it to early to predict.

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