2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

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2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#1 Postby cycloneye » Fri Jan 01, 2021 8:06 am

Here is our annual thread for the indicators topic this time the 2021 North Atlantic one. Is important to have this thread early to see how things are evolving in the important factor of the steering as we will see based on that which areas in the basin may have visits of tropical systems. Also,it will be important to see how the pressures will be,how the shear is doing,how are the MSLP forecasts going to be and how the waters are in terms of being more warm or not. And also we have to follow how things are evolving in the Saharan air Layer and in the Vertical Instability factor. If anyone wants to comment about ENSO,you can do it here. Post away your take folks.

Note=This thread is not to post forecast numbers but to discuss about how things are going in the factors this thread is enlisting. There will be our annual poll for that starting on April 1rst. As a matter of fact,this thread will help you a bit to decide about the numbers game with all the information that will be posted.

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https://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/ ... /nao.shtml

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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#2 Postby CyclonicFury » Fri Jan 01, 2021 11:32 am

It's VERY early, but early indicators suggest the Atlantic could have yet another above-average season. However, it seems like a safe bet to be less active than 2020 in numbers.

This current La Niña is near its peak and will likely weaken soon, but ENSO climatology suggests it is unlikely a La Niña this strong will be directly followed by an El Niño. Unlike 2006, which followed the previous record-breaking season, the La Niña is significantly stronger.

Right now the MDR is warmer than normal, but the Atlantic hurricane season is five months away. The NAO has been more negative than recent winters, which would also favor the MDR remaining warmer than normal over the coming weeks.

As far as ENSO goes, some potential analogs for this season are 1996, 1999, 2000, 2008, and 2011. Some second-year Niña seasons for the Atlantic have been quite active. It remains to seen if we get a double-dip Niña, but history suggests there is a strong chance of it happening.

The CanSIPS especially appears to look very favorable for ASO 2021, but it is way too early to take long range climate models seriously.
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#3 Postby CyclonicFury » Fri Jan 01, 2021 12:35 pm

The January CanSIPS is about as favorable of a look as you can get. Thankfully, it's only New Year's Day, so this likely won't verify. Hopefully it trends to a less favorable look over the coming months.

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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#4 Postby MarioProtVI » Fri Jan 01, 2021 2:11 pm

I think 2021 will be quite a bit less active then some on here think. The La Niña right now is only really supported by the surface and the atmosphere, with hardly any type of support from the subsurface (more fragmented then 2017-18 even) and a lack of EWB to support the -SSTAs.

 https://twitter.com/cyclonicwx/status/1342226833727696896




This means it would not take much to significantly weaken the La Niña to the point it is non-existent before the start of the season. It is also quite possible a quick shift to warm neutral or even El Niño could occur and significantly cut down on the amount of storms. 2006 is a good example, everyone expected the cool neutral / weak La Niña to persist based on several signs and a considerably active season, only for the ENSO to rapidly shift to an El Niño by the fall and result in a slightly below average season. As of right now the atmosphere does not really seem to be behaving like a true La Niña.

My expected numbers right now range from about 10-13 / 4-6 / 2-3 with around 92-105 ACE. Partially because the Atlantic can only have so many active seasons in a row before needing a refuel (see 1998-01 and 2010-12 for example, each year had diminishing quality before an El Niño occurred or things just completely busted). So the chance of a lower quality season is also there. Once we get past the spring predicability barrier in April/May we should have a clearer picture, but this is my thoughts based on what I see right now.
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#5 Postby ClarCari » Fri Jan 01, 2021 3:30 pm

MarioProtVI wrote:My expected numbers right now range from about 10-13 / 4-6 / 2-3 with around 92-105 ACE. Partially because the Atlantic can only have so many active seasons in a row before needing a refuel (see 1998-01 and 2010-12 for example, each year had diminishing quality before an El Niño occurred or things just completely busted). So the chance of a lower quality season is also there. Once we get past the spring predicability barrier in April/May we should have a clearer picture, but this is my thoughts based on what I see right now.


No...That’s not how the atmosphere and weather works. The Atlantic ocean isn’t just some car that needs to be “refueled”. The atmospheric conditions are what contributes to ocean temperatures and the Atlantic could theoretically stay warm forever. As long as the sun stills burns, you will never run out of “fuel” for active hurricane seasons.

You had an interesting discussion about the depth of the ENSO, but unfortunately, you left out the rest of that twitter thread where they then point out how this La Niña event is in other ways stronger than 2017’s and more persistent and in the end explains that this La Niña is showing zero signs of slowing down to a warmer phase compared to 2017’s at the same points in time.
The past few weeks there has been some upwelling of the warmer waters in the equatorial pacific that subsequently cool back down when exposed to the persistent trades that aren’t seeming to really slow down. That’s leading to the La Niña to gradually deepen into the ENSO regions so that question of the depth of the ENSO is changing.

So far other climate experts and hurricane specialists have not at all brought up the possibility of a warm phase next year, if they thought there was a possibility of a 2006 switch or something like that they would have discussed that. All confidence generally leads to a tinyy chance of a warm phase next year.

I also think it’s wise for everyone to avoid the 2006 ENSO switch comparison. Just because 2020 dipped into the greeks like 2005 did doesn’t mean this year has everything in common with 2005. In fact Gulf activity and number of named storms were the ONLY things 2020 and 2005 really have in common.
The ENSO in both years are veryyy different and the hopes for a 2006 last second El Niño repeat for 2021 are just not realistic.
Last edited by ClarCari on Fri Jan 01, 2021 4:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#6 Postby Weather Dude » Fri Jan 01, 2021 3:33 pm

My early thoughts are that 2021 will be active, but it won't "feel" active since we are coming off a 30 named storm season. 15-16 NS seems like a solid guess at this point. It's kind of weird to think that 2021 could end up with half of the storms that 2020 had, yet still potentially be above average...
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#7 Postby Kingarabian » Sat Jan 02, 2021 2:24 am

MarioProtVI wrote:I think 2021 will be quite a bit less active then some on here think. The La Niña right now is only really supported by the surface and the atmosphere, with hardly any type of support from the subsurface (more fragmented then 2017-18 even) and a lack of EWB to support the -SSTAs.

https://twitter.com/cyclonicwx/status/1342226833727696896/photo/1

This means it would not take much to significantly weaken the La Niña to the point it is non-existent before the start of the season. It is also quite possible a quick shift to warm neutral or even El Niño could occur and significantly cut down on the amount of storms. 2006 is a good example, everyone expected the cool neutral / weak La Niña to persist based on several signs and a considerably active season, only for the ENSO to rapidly shift to an El Niño by the fall and result in a slightly below average season. As of right now the atmosphere does not really seem to be behaving like a true La Niña.

My expected numbers right now range from about 10-13 / 4-6 / 2-3 with around 92-105 ACE. Partially because the Atlantic can only have so many active seasons in a row before needing a refuel (see 1998-01 and 2010-12 for example, each year had diminishing quality before an El Niño occurred or things just completely busted). So the chance of a lower quality season is also there. Once we get past the spring predicability barrier in April/May we should have a clearer picture, but this is my thoughts based on what I see right now.


This is normal. December through February, weaker trades are favored so it will be theoretically easier to get a downwelling KW from the WPAC to the CPAC. Forcing at this time leans towards the warm phase of ENSO. And despite that, this La Nina is in full control. So unless we see some serious changes, La Nina for the 2021 hurricane season will be favored because by the end of spring, this background forcing will start to favor more of the cooler ENSO phase and it could snowball once July kicks in.
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#8 Postby Shell Mound » Sat Jan 02, 2021 11:11 am

Weather Dude wrote:My early thoughts are that 2021 will be active, but it won't "feel" active since we are coming off a 30 named storm season. 15-16 NS seems like a solid guess at this point. It's kind of weird to think that 2021 could end up with half of the storms that 2020 had, yet still potentially be above average...

It will be interesting to see whether 2021 ends up featuring much lower numbers than 2020 yet ends up with similar or even higher seasonal ACE. A number of hyperactive seasons have come in pairs or even triplets: 1886–7, 1932–3, 1995–6, 1998–9, and 2003–5 come to mind. On the other hand, there have also been many “isolated” hyperactive years, including 1878, 1893, 1906, 1926, 1950, 1955, 1961, 1964, 1969, 2010, and 2017. Obviously, 2020 was heavily weighted toward “quantity” vs. “quality,” whereas 2017, like 1996 and 1999, was vice versa. Given that we have seen a lot of unusual oceanic-atmospheric patterns recently—including the ongoing, robust surface La Niña coupled with +PDO and lacklustre subsurface—I would surmise that we may see yet another odd combination of factors in ‘21. SSTs may be closer to neutral or even warm neutral ENSO but we might end up with a -PDO, for instance. Maybe the tropical Atlantic will be a bit cooler and the African monsoon less active, yet we may still end up with a more intense season in the MDR than we saw in 2020. 2018–19 were not particularly impressive in terms of ACE and/or long-lived major hurricanes; 2020 produced numerous intense storms, yet these were mainly short-lived. Perhaps ‘21 will feature more long-trackers despite featuring cooler SSTs and a weaker African monsoon, given that there may be more room for smaller, more discrete circulations to “spin up,” so to speak. Possibly an Edouard ‘96 or Floyd/Gert ‘99 (or two) might find sufficient conditions under which to develop.
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#9 Postby CyclonicFury » Sat Jan 02, 2021 1:53 pm

Shell Mound wrote:
Weather Dude wrote:My early thoughts are that 2021 will be active, but it won't "feel" active since we are coming off a 30 named storm season. 15-16 NS seems like a solid guess at this point. It's kind of weird to think that 2021 could end up with half of the storms that 2020 had, yet still potentially be above average...

It will be interesting to see whether 2021 ends up featuring much lower numbers than 2020 yet ends up with similar or even higher seasonal ACE. A number of hyperactive seasons have come in pairs or even triplets: 1886–7, 1932–3, 1995–6, 1998–9, and 2003–5 come to mind. On the other hand, there have also been many “isolated” hyperactive years, including 1878, 1893, 1906, 1926, 1950, 1955, 1961, 1964, 1969, 2010, and 2017. Obviously, 2020 was heavily weighted toward “quantity” vs. “quality,” whereas 2017, like 1996 and 1999, was vice versa. Given that we have seen a lot of unusual oceanic-atmospheric patterns recently—including the ongoing, robust surface La Niña coupled with +PDO and lacklustre subsurface—I would surmise that we may see yet another odd combination of factors in ‘21. SSTs may be closer to neutral or even warm neutral ENSO but we might end up with a -PDO, for instance. Maybe the tropical Atlantic will be a bit cooler and the African monsoon less active, yet we may still end up with a more intense season in the MDR than we saw in 2020. 2018–19 were not particularly impressive in terms of ACE and/or long-lived major hurricanes; 2020 produced numerous intense storms, yet these were mainly short-lived. Perhaps ‘21 will feature more long-trackers despite featuring cooler SSTs and a weaker African monsoon, given that there may be more room for smaller, more discrete circulations to “spin up,” so to speak. Possibly an Edouard ‘96 or Floyd/Gert ‘99 (or two) might find sufficient conditions under which to develop.

I've always felt like the ratio of hurricanes/major hurricanes to named storms is a bit misleading. 2020 had 13 hurricanes (second most on record, could even be 14 if Gamma is upgraded) and 6 major hurricanes (second most on record, could be a record tying 7 if Zeta is upgraded). After August 20, 11 of 18 named storms became hurricanes, and 6 of those 11 became major hurricanes. I don't really consider 2020 a low quality season after the intense late season.
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#10 Postby Shell Mound » Sat Jan 02, 2021 2:08 pm

CyclonicFury wrote:
Shell Mound wrote:
Weather Dude wrote:My early thoughts are that 2021 will be active, but it won't "feel" active since we are coming off a 30 named storm season. 15-16 NS seems like a solid guess at this point. It's kind of weird to think that 2021 could end up with half of the storms that 2020 had, yet still potentially be above average...

It will be interesting to see whether 2021 ends up featuring much lower numbers than 2020 yet ends up with similar or even higher seasonal ACE. A number of hyperactive seasons have come in pairs or even triplets: 1886–7, 1932–3, 1995–6, 1998–9, and 2003–5 come to mind. On the other hand, there have also been many “isolated” hyperactive years, including 1878, 1893, 1906, 1926, 1950, 1955, 1961, 1964, 1969, 2010, and 2017. Obviously, 2020 was heavily weighted toward “quantity” vs. “quality,” whereas 2017, like 1996 and 1999, was vice versa. Given that we have seen a lot of unusual oceanic-atmospheric patterns recently—including the ongoing, robust surface La Niña coupled with +PDO and lacklustre subsurface—I would surmise that we may see yet another odd combination of factors in ‘21. SSTs may be closer to neutral or even warm neutral ENSO but we might end up with a -PDO, for instance. Maybe the tropical Atlantic will be a bit cooler and the African monsoon less active, yet we may still end up with a more intense season in the MDR than we saw in 2020. 2018–19 were not particularly impressive in terms of ACE and/or long-lived major hurricanes; 2020 produced numerous intense storms, yet these were mainly short-lived. Perhaps ‘21 will feature more long-trackers despite featuring cooler SSTs and a weaker African monsoon, given that there may be more room for smaller, more discrete circulations to “spin up,” so to speak. Possibly an Edouard ‘96 or Floyd/Gert ‘99 (or two) might find sufficient conditions under which to develop.

I've always felt like the ratio of hurricanes/major hurricanes to named storms is a bit misleading. 2020 had 13 hurricanes (second most on record, could even be 14 if Gamma is upgraded) and 6 major hurricanes (second most on record, could be a record tying 7 if Zeta is upgraded). After August 20, 11 of 18 named storms became hurricanes, and 6 of those 11 became major hurricanes. I don't really consider 2020 a low quality season after the intense late season.

I was applying the standards I enumerated herein, which utilised the ratio of major hurricane days—not the number of (major) hurricanes—to total named storms. I listed all of the seasons on record that met the official criteria for hyperactivity: ACE > 152.5 + at least two of the three criteria for above-normal activity (≥ 13 NS, ≥ 7 H, and ≥ 3 MH). While 2020 featured a large number of major hurricanes, the ratio of MH days to total NS was the lowest of all hyperactive seasons on record, so conditions were generally unfavourable for intense storms to remain strong for more than a short period of time. Of course, proximity to land played a role as well, given that majors in ‘20 tended to deepen close to land.
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#11 Postby toad strangler » Sat Jan 02, 2021 2:41 pm

Here we go again. La Nina looks to be still present this season and we all know that isn't the best of news in general for Atlantic Basin activity. Neutral ENSO wouldn't be much better. BUCKLE UP...
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#12 Postby cycloneye » Tue Jan 05, 2021 8:12 am

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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#13 Postby tolakram » Tue Jan 05, 2021 11:34 am



That tweet thread is worth reading. Last time this big event happened was 2013. :)
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#14 Postby Category5Kaiju » Tue Jan 05, 2021 2:45 pm

tolakram wrote:


That tweet thread is worth reading. Last time this big event happened was 2013. :)


Apparently though the atmospheric and oceanic evolution is more akin to 2010 than it is to 2013 according to Eric Webb, and obviously 2010 became a highly active season that nearly went Greek. 2013 if I am not mistaken was simply an extremely rare and hurricane-hostile case of the subtropics warming much more than expected, the THC collapsing (causing a lot of shear), above average drought conditions in Brazil as well as SAL, and a -AMO-like phase returning. As a result I'm personally not expecting anything like a repeat of 2013 to occur this season unfortunately, although I would love to be wrong because having a sixth potentially above average season is simply terrifying (unless most of the storms recurve like they did in 2010).
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#15 Postby SFLcane » Wed Jan 06, 2021 8:20 am

Wow! It’s way early but those indicators scream huge season again this year. :eek:
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#16 Postby Shell Mound » Wed Jan 06, 2021 8:45 am

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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#17 Postby Shell Mound » Thu Jan 07, 2021 12:26 pm

SFLcane wrote:Wow! It’s way early but those indicators scream huge season again this year. :eek:

The long-range ECMWF, as of January ‘21, suggests the coolest SSTs in the equatorial Pacific will be weighted toward NINO 4 during MJJ. Perhaps that could induce more shear and/or sinking air over the Caribbean and western MDR, despite the January forecast showing a considerably wetter MDR than it did for the same period last year. So we’ll have to factor in a warming ENSO over time set against a warmer +AMO during the same timeframe. Notably, the ECMWF also shows a much stronger -PDO during MJJ than it did at this time in 2020.
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#18 Postby Category5Kaiju » Sat Jan 09, 2021 12:39 am

Shell Mound wrote:
SFLcane wrote:Wow! It’s way early but those indicators scream huge season again this year. :eek:

The long-range ECMWF, as of January ‘21, suggests the coolest SSTs in the equatorial Pacific will be weighted toward NINO 4 during MJJ. Perhaps that could induce more shear and/or sinking air over the Caribbean and western MDR, despite the January forecast showing a considerably wetter MDR than it did for the same period last year. So we’ll have to factor in a warming ENSO over time set against a warmer +AMO during the same timeframe. Notably, the ECMWF also shows a much stronger -PDO during MJJ than it did at this time in 2020.


At least according to some old OSPO NOAA maps of past hurricane seasons, 1998, 2005, 2008, 2011, and 2017 at one point during the main season seemed to have a Modoki La Nina feature to them where the Nino 1,2 region was anomalously warm and the Nino 3-4 regions much cooler than normal. *If* a similar feature happens in 2021, I'm personally not sure if that would necessarily mean the Caribbean and W MDR would necessary have high shear and subsidence (and therefore be unfavorable for powerful WCAR storms) as Mitch, Emily, Wilma, Gustav, and Paloma all occurred during such times in their respective seasons where the Nino 1,2 region was like orange or red on the sst color code scale and the Nino 3-4 regions blue or purple.
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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#19 Postby weeniepatrol » Sat Jan 09, 2021 10:51 am

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Re: 2021 Indicators: SST's / SAL / MSLP / Shear / Steering / Instability / Sat Images

#20 Postby cycloneye » Sat Jan 09, 2021 11:58 am



As Adrian brings the open eyes I also do so. :eek: :eek: :eek:
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