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Yacht Newsletter
Brian Headshot
Baja and West Coast Surges
By: Brian Whitley, Assistant Operations Manager

This is the time of year when numerous vessels head north along the Baja and the West Coast, whether it is to avoid the threat of Hurricanes along the S'rn Baja or to explore cooler climates in the Pacific Northwest to Alaska. Unfortunately, the prevailing wind and sea along these coasts is right on the nose and this often leads to extended delays for better weather and uncomfortable conditions.

WRI's experienced team of professional marine meteorologists are quite familiar with the trouble-spots along these coasts and what to look for to make your transit as pleasant as possible. Did you know that WRI's online service SeaWeather can give you access to high-resolution computer model data that can also pin-point these same concerns?

The majority of other online services use the Global GFS model, which is freely available and adequate for larger synoptic features, but does NOT do a great job with localized effects. This is not so with WRI's in-house high-resolution data, which is run four times a day. This data can help:
  • Highlight trouble-spots, such as capes and headlands where winds funnel
  • Pick up on diurnal effects such as sea-breezes and the afternoon/evening surges that are so common for these regions
  • Pick up on Katabatic effects such as the Santa Ana winds
  • Shoaling effects of steeper waves along shallower water depths
The above image shows WRI's high resolution plot of winds barbs and sea heights in color. Note the higher winds near Cape Mendocino, Point Arena, Point Reyes and (to a lesser extent) near Point Conception. The map can be zoomed in significantly closer for greater detail.

While nothing beats having WRI's team of professionals closely monitoring you for the best window and safest/most comfortable conditions, SeaWeather (, comes in a close second! Contact us for further information or a complimentary, risk-free trial.

Chris Headshot
An Interesting Start to Atlantic Tropical Season
By Chris Iraggi, Meteorologist

The hurricane season in the Atlantic Basin doesn't begin until June 1st, though this year there was a rather unusual kick-off system. It all started on May 21st, a little over a week earlier than the official start of the season, where a stagnant area of showers/squalls developed within the W'rn Caribbean. In the days following its development, we at WRI closely monitored its progress as it moved very slowly W'ward toward the Yucatan Peninsula. It wouldn't be until May 25th where the system's overall broad circulation would move back over the Yucatan Channel, and at that point the system became better organized and was officially classified as "Subtropical Storm Alberto".

The system had been dubbed as "subtropical" due to the following reasons:
  • Organization was heavily sheared due to strong upper level winds
  • It was in an environment of substantial dry air
  • Multiple disorganized low centers had developed associated with the system
  • Highest winds/squall activity were displaced east of the above mentioned centers of circulation
Ultimately, the system continued to progress northward, and despite some slight strengthening, the system continued to lack more tropical characteristics as it made landfall over the W'rn Florida Peninsula as a 40 knot subtropical storm.

A visible satellite image, courtesy of NOAA, at the moment which Subtropical Storm Alberto made landfall (Just before 05 PM EDT on May 28th) over the W'rn Florida Panhandle.

The actions of Alberto in the next 36 hours are what makes the system so unique. As Alberto was carried N'ward across the Midwest, it maintained its strength, and was actually re-classified as a Tropical Depression over W'rn Tennessee. The environment in which Alberto had been in was so rich in moisture that the system was able to maintain relative organization and strength until reaching Lake Huron, before finally weakening into a remnant low. This is only the 11th system on record to do this, and the first before June 01st.

With this much of an interesting start to the 2018 Atlantic Hurricane Season, how will the rest of the season shape up? Be sure to follow along with WRI's daily Atlantic Tropical Summaries, or subscribe to our SeaWeather service for the latest on any development.

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