Friday, May 24, 2013

On best beaches, hurricanes, and Memorial Day in Fairbanks

A little on various topics, heading into the Memorial Day weekend ... 

If you're reading this blog, you're probably a weather follower, and you also probably heard the forecast Thursday from the National Hurricane Center about the coming season in the Atlantic basin and the Gulf of Mexico.

There were no surprises.  Government meteorologists see the same data that their counterparts in private business see.  Surface water temperatures in the tropical Atlantic are warmer than usual, and there's no El Nino in the eastern Pacific to send a disruptive west-to-east wind across the southern United States.

So the Hurricane Center's forecast is for above-average activity this year.

The forecast always concerns me, because we can have a busy season of hurricanes without a single storm making landfall in the United States.  Meanwhile, a relatively quiet season can become memorable if a couple of stronger hurricanes hit the mainland.

But I've read a couple of forecasts that tie this season to 2004, and that's worrisome. That was the year where a seemingly endless string of hurricanes smashed into Florida and then curved inland across Georgia and the western Carolinas.

The Hurricane Center also released the list of names to be used for storms in 2013. It starts with Andrea, and is followed by Barry and Chantal, and then on through the alphabet.  I noticed the ominous name of Jerry lurking in the list.

Emergency responders in Charlotte who were here in the late 1970s might remember a Tropical Storm Jerry that dumped record rainfall on the city, causing devastating floods.

Hurricane Sandy Money for N.C.:  Officials in the state announced last week that North Carolina is getting another $17.3 million from the federal government to fix parks and refuges damaged last year by Hurricane Sandy.

Best Beaches?  The Weather Channel's annual reader poll on the best beaches around the country has been released.  The winner for the Southeast is Myrtle Beach.  I'm not knocking the choice, because I enjoy the attractions that Myrtle Beach has to offer.  And I'm sure it's No. 1 with many readers across the nation.

But I wonder what would happen if a poll were taken among Carolinas residents?  My preference is Sunset Beach, and I'll bet many of you have a No. 1 pick that isn't in Horry County.

The other No. 1 choices from around the country were Sanibel Island, Fla. (Gulf Coast); Ocean City, Md. (Mid-Atlantic); Hampton Beach, N.H. (New England); Sleeping Bear Dunes, Mich. (Great Lakes); and Laguna Beach, Calif. (West Coast).

You can read the survey results here.

Memorial Day in Alaska.  I was wondering earlier today about Memorial Day weather in Alaska.  We make a lot about this being the first holiday weekend of the summer season, and I was curious if it really felt like summer in the land of the midnight sun.

The forecast in Fairbanks for Monday is sunny with highs in the middle 70s. That's close to as warm as we'll be.

Have a great holiday weekend.


Chief Rolp said...

"Me like-em heap big nice on mem-oriole day! Good man is Steve Weather Man!"

Chief Rolp Wambamba

Brent said...

Shhhh. Of course Sunset Beach is the best beach on the Carolina Coast but you don't have to announce it. First the bridge, now favorable press in the Observer. I fear for our little paradise...

Biden in 2016 and 2020 said...

Blast those blabber mouths. They cannot leave these undiscovered places alone. Granted, the riff-raff probably do not read the sources that advertise these nooks, and there is likely not enough junk entertainment there to attract them otherwise.