Have you noticed a hint of color in area trees lately? I have on my travels across Minnesota, Iowa, and Wisconsin lately. Yep, it’s that time of year across the northern tier of states and the mountains out west, when our cool nights and diminishing daylight lead to a changing of the leaves. It starts in the maples, and eventually the colorful pallet spreads across the landscape. I’m not sure about you, but I think of football, apple orchards and pumpkin patches, as well as big piles of leaves to jump on this time of year. I’ve found a great site for you to follow the change and find the average color peak! It encompasses color hot spots across the country: http://www.fs.fed.us/news/fallcolors/
Activity in the tropics is really heating up during the climatological peak of hurricane season, with three areas of disturbed weather of concern right now. Hurricane Igor continues strengthening in the central Atlantic, and is forecast to make major hurricane status tonight. At this point, it looks as if Igor may attain category 4 status, with winds over 131 mph. Behind Igor, Julia will be named today. A very well defined circulation came off the coast of Africa yesterday, and has strengthened into tropical depression #12. Our third area of concern is a concentrated area of thunderstorms to the south of Puerto Rico. The National Hurricane Center has dropped the chances of this storm gaining a name to around 50%, down from 60% yesterday. Eventually, this circulation will make its way to the Yucatan Peninsula, bringing heavy rain to Caribbean islands along its path. A small circulation near Bermuda is being monitored, but this system is not forecast to become a tropical cyclone. Hurricane Igor will gobble this storm up as it begins a trek toward the northwest early this week.
Are you ready for some football?! Although the Vikings and Saints kicked off the NFL season last Thursday, the rest of the league kicks off today. Most of the nation is quiet weather-wise, thanks to a large ridge of high pressure in the central U.S. Those of you along the eastern seaboard(south of Delaware)can expect a few showers and thunderstorms. This area of disturbed weather will stretch down toward Florida, then run along the Gulf Coast and back into central Texas, New Mexico, and southeast Arizona. Storms developing with a weak disturbance in the Great Lakes region today may produce tiny hail, as cold air spills in aloft.
Have a wonderful week ahead!
Meteorologist Bryan Karrick, WeatherNation LLC