03 August 2012
Ernesto enters Caribbean, threatens Mexico's Yucatan.

Well... It's not the most beautiful cyclone we've ever seen, but Tropical Storm Ernesto has entered the Caribbean and it seems to be rebounding this afternoon, with convection really firing up again. Despite wind shear and fast forward speed, the system somehow survives. Ernesto is tenacious!

The latest National Hurricane Center forecast still suggests a strong threat to Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, with a Category 1 hurricane crossing the coast near Cozumel sometime Wednesday.  But it's important to emphasize that this forecast is highly uncertain. Particularly disturbing is the lack of support from the two most-reliable models, the Euro and the GFS—both of which keep the system very weak or kill it  altogether.

iCyclone forecaster Jorge González observes, "Any gain in strength the following 48-72 hours will almost assure a hurricane in the NW Caribbean, since the Euro and GFS slowly weaken and keep Ernesto embedded in the low-level flow toward Central America, whereas a stronger system would gain some latitude."

It's enough of a threat that we've started planning for a possible Yucatan chase.  

Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula is iCyclone's favorite place to chase hurricanes:  the coastline is straight, the roads are good, the hurricanes are powerful, and the people are always welcoming.  In 2007, iCyclone founder Josh Morgerman chased Category 5 Hurricane Dean in Chetumal—a truly unforgettable experience.  Check out the video (above), or read the chase account.

Perhaps we'll be there next week to meet Ernesto!

More later...