Hurricane Season – All Bets are Off

| July 31, 2011

Summer came a month early to Texas. Imagine that.

That doesn’t mean fall will be here a month early though. No, what it means is we are being set up for the mother of all hurricane seasons. Water temperatures in the Gulf of Mexico are downright amazing. Hurricane seasons are pretty long for scientific reasons, but prime-time hurricane threat expands inside the season calendar when it’s this hot this early.

Growing up on the Texas Gulf Coast at the southern tip of Texas meant keeping ample supplies of duct tape to tape windows and for the serious stuff, plywood was at the ready from the local lumber yard. Storm prediction for landfall location ran twenty-four to forty-eight hours in advance. Black-and-white flickering radar images on a black-and-white TV were what we had, and we all walked uphill to school – and home! Seriously, there was an element of suspense attached to a hurricane. Where would it really hit, and how bad would it really be? Most of the time we left the tape on the windows for months on end. The variables, compared to today, were many and large.

The facts are:
– There are twenty-one names for hurricanes of 2011, and they are:
Arlene
Bret
Cindy
Don
Emily
Franklin
Gert
Harvey
Irene
Jose
Katia
Lee
Maria
Nate
Ophelia
Philippe
Rina
Sean
Tammy
Vince
Whitney

– Today, off the coast of Texas, northeast of Freeport the water temperature is 87-degrees fahrenheit. If you are interested in the latest information from NOAA, you can find the Atlantic Hurricane information here.

With the latest Don, dissipating upon landfall at my old home shore, it makes me wonder what it’s going to take to relieve the state of what my newfound local friends call “the worst drought they’ve ever seen.” These guys are pushing seventy, and the weathermen have moved this summer into second place all-time, and a serious contender to the summer of 1980 – number one all-time for consecutive days over 100-degrees, and number of days over 100-degrees.

All I can say is be careful what you wish for, you just might get it. All this talk of “we need a hurricane” to relieve this drought can be taken all wrong by the powers that be. I have been through a couple of them, and this really is one force of nature that we don’t want to conjure. Mother nature just doesn’t bring all the good and leave out the bad.

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Category: Science and Environmental

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I write. I photograph. I fish, and I live.

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  1. shannon says:

    I may be able to dig up images from Beulah, and I remember seeing images of my Grandfather living in a camp working as a young teen, to clean up the 1933 hurricane that hit the Valley. Maybe I can find those as well.