Tuesday, August 21, 2007
Hurricane Dean emerged from the Yucatan into the Bay of Campeche as either a Category 1 or a Category 2 cyclone. Winds are at least 70 knots/81 mph/130 kmh. A USAF recon aircraft will be flying shortly to gather new data and confirm conditions.
Dean remains on a course slightly north of west at 17 knots/20 mph/31 kmh. A high pressure system just north of the Gulf of Mexico should keep the hurricane on a steady track.
The bad news is that Dean's core remains intact with deep convection in the centre. In short, the eye is reforming quickly and the cyclone is regaining strength. It is expected to make landfall, somewhere near Vera Cruz, as a Category 2 or 3 hurricane.
Computer models are relatively unchanged, although UKMET has some odd jag to the north. The other projected tracks fall within the official forecast guidelines so I would ignore that single model for now.
A point to remember is that the tracks from the computer models show the cyclone moving into the Pacific. That is highly unlikely and the tracks are there because of the 96 hour prediction. In truth, Dean should quickly lose all its significant power once it reaches the central mountains of Mexico.
Click on images to enlarge.