Nate to Make Landfall as a Category 1 Hurricane
Nate is currently a Category 1 Hurricane with winds sustained at 90 mph in the Gulf of Mexico. The latest GOES-16 satellite data and NOAA Hurricane Hunter data show increased organization as the central pressure has dropped.
— WeatherNation (@WeatherNation) October 7, 2017
With very warm Gulf of Mexico waters and little shear (change in wind speed/direction with height), there isn’t much working against Nate on its way to the Gulf Coast. Models are also trending toward a higher intensity before landfall.
As far as timing, with an increased forward speed of 26 mph, landfall is expected between Saturday night.
As with many land-falling tropical systems, severe weather is possible with the outer bands of rainfall coming ashore. The Storm Prediction Center has issued a slight risk of severe weather for Saturday in anticipation of isolated tornadoes within strong thunderstorms.
Once it makes land fall, the storm will begin to weaken rapidly. However, a cold front pushing Nate to the east will tap into its moisture and create heavy rainfall for much of the eastern US. Flash flood watches are expected to expand north in the coming days.