By Jeff King
One of the busiest hurricane seasons in recent memory continues to focus on the eastern Pacific Ocean. After a parade of 10 storms marched westward, there are two currently making headlines.
Tropical Storm Karina is – as of 11 a.m. today – falling prey to the much larger storm behind her. He is Hurricane Lowell. While the systems will likely cancel each other out, Lowell has enough atmospheric tug to pull Karina off of her westbound heading, absorbing her power. Karina has made a turn to the southeast and is expected to turn – again – to the northeast – directly into the path of Lowell. Sounding a little like a soap opera, the forecast shows the two lumbering giants merging into a powerful maelstrom before dissolving harmlessly over cooler waters somewhere between Wailuku and San Diego.
Meanwhile, two storms that formed in the central Pacific but did not achieve tropical storm strength have affected Hawai’i anyway. The National Weather Service has issued a high surf advisory for south-facing shores. Waves could top nine feet today and are expected to be only slightly smaller tomorrow.
And still another weather system is forming behind Karina and Lowell. An area of heavy thunderstorms is becoming more organized south of Acapulco. The NWS predicts a very high probability (80-90 percent) that the system will develop into a tropical cyclone by tomorrow. If she achieves that strength, she would become Tropical Storm Marie.