HURRICANE HISTORY: Here’s a reminder that hurricanes can take some odd-ball tracks with twists and turns. Fifty-three years ago on Friday, Hurricane Inez plowed across the Florida Keys after a destructive romp through the Greater Antilles. Inez came up from the Caribbean and followed the southern coast of Cuba until it made a hard right turn to the north-northeast into the northwestern Bahamas. After that it stalled, then made another turn toward the west-southwest and walloped the Keys with gusts of up to 110 mph. At its peak, Inez was a strong Category 4 hurricane with winds of 150 mph. (Image credit: NWS-Key West)
RELENTLESS: The high in Tallahassee on Thursday reached a scorching 97 degrees — the warmest temperature ever recorded in the city in October.
What was the previous record high for October? That was set the day before on Wednesday, 96 degrees. The long-standing all-time October record of 95 — set in 1941 — was tied on October 1.
To the west just off I-10, Crestview reached 101 degrees.
Down the coast, Naples tied a record high Thursday with 94. That was set in 1990.
WET WEEK? An approaching front resulting in southwest winds next week could bring heavy rain to South Florida, the National Weather Service says.
“A conditional risk for flooding could eventually materialize in the Monday night to Wednesday time frame across South Florida,” forecasters said in their Friday discussion in Miami.
In Central Florida, rain chances remain at around 20-30 percent through Tuesday before jumping to 50 percent on Wednesday and Thursday.
Tampa’s rain chances range from 50-60 percent all of next week.
HERE’S A COOL ULTRA-LONG-RANGE FORECAST: It could turn out to be in weather fantasy-land, but the GFS is showing a cold front that means business sliding down the entire Florida peninsula around Friday, October 18, pushing temperatures into the high 40s in the western panhandle and below 60 as far south as Orlando.
Under this scenario, temperatures the next morning, on Saturday October 19 would dip into the low- to mid-60s in parts of South Florida, with highs topping out in the 70s around Lake Okeechobee.
Nothing to hang your hat on at this point, but a reminder that, yes, Virginia, autumn really does come to Florida — you just gotta have some patience. It looks a little different from northern climates but is nonetheless spectacular.
METEOROLOGICAL BLAST FROM THE PAST: The National Weather Service office in Melbourne is celebrating the 30th anniversary of its opening this month. Things started out small and quiet but have gotten busy! (Image credit: NWS-Melbourne)