A mass of tropical moisture associated with a tropical disturbance over the Bahamas will push through South Florida late today and tomorrow. Cloudiness and thunderstorm coverage will increase as the moisture surge moves through.
A strong high-pressure system spans the Atlantic Ocean. The flow on the south side of the high is responsible for the nice ocean breeze that has blown over the Florida peninsula since late last week. Embedded in that flow are minor disturbances of increased moisture, drier patches, and eventually another round of Saharan Dust.
When tomorrow’s disturbance reaches the Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday and Thursday, the atmospheric pattern is forecast to become a bit favorable for tropical development. The odds are low that the disturbance would have time to organize before it reached the Texas coast, but it’s not impossible that a tropical depression could form.
There is already a separate small disturbance in the extreme northwestern Gulf, which is producing a cluster of thunderstorms. Sometimes these clusters can quickly develop an organized circulation, but most likely this system will move onshore, bringing tropical downpours to the Louisiana and upper Texas coast.
Elsewhere in the Atlantic, about midway between Africa and the Caribbean islands there is another disturbance – a tropical wave that originated over Africa. This one also has a slight chance of organizing somewhat before it reaches the islands or the coast of South America. After that, the upper-level winds are forecast to become unfavorable for development.
The strong high-pressure system over the Atlantic is creating a storm track that is too far south for the disturbances moving off Africa to turn into much more than a moisture surge when they reach the islands. When the storm track migrates farther north, which is likely to happen next month, these are the types of disturbances that we’ll watch closely.
Long-range computer forecast models indicate that another dense plume of Saharan Dust will get caught in the flow and move across the Atlantic this week. On the current schedule, the next round of Saharan Dust will reach Florida over the weekend or early next week.
The combination of the dust and the strength of the Atlantic high should keep the tropical Atlantic quiet through this week, at least.