The Tropical Atlantic Basin is quiet and expected to stay that way for the coming week, which is nothing unusual at this point in the season. Typically, only one storm forms during the month of July and Chantal may have been “the one”. Upper-level conditions may become slightly more favorable for a storm to develop by the end of the month, but until then no tropical cyclone activity is anticipated.
CARIBBEAN & GULF
Unsettled weather continues in the Gulf of Mexico thanks to a large upper-level trough of low pressure. This feature is forecast to drift north and leave the Gulf over the weekend, allowing the weather to calm down a bit over the water and the peninsula of Florida. A new weather system in New England will be sending a weak cold front into the Southeast next week, likely triggering more numerous thunderstorms for parts of Florida by the middle of next week. Much of the Caribbean remains quiet due to lower-than-normal atmospheric moisture and faster winds aloft keeping thunderstorm development to a minimum.
A strong ridge of high pressure, often referred to as the “Bermuda High”, continues to dominate the central and western Atlantic, suppressing any wave of lower pressure that would move west toward the Caribbean. Faster winds aloft are transporting some very dry air in from the deserts of North Africa and this will also likely keep strong thunderstorm activity from developing. Nonetheless, there will likely continue to be a parade of tropical waves over the next 10 days, each one fighting for its life on the journey across the Atlantic.
A shift in the upper-level wind pattern is projected by several of the trusted long-range forecast models at or around July 28th. The strong Bermuda High is forecast to weaken a bit and move further north, closer to the island of Bermuda. As a result, conditions are forecast to become slightly more favorable for a tropical depression or storm to form at the tail end of this forecast period. At this time, there is a low chance of development in the eastern Atlantic during the period July 28-30.
THE BOTTOM LINE
- Upper low exits Florida this weekend with improving weather expected early next week
- Bermuda high is unusually strong and displaced to the south, suppressing tropical waves as they move west
- A shift in the upper-air pattern is expected by the end of the month, possibly making conditions slightly more favorable for development