Reported by Don Thompson at location in Belmopan 17'15" N, 88'47" W
Tuesday, December 31, 2013
A massive area of very dry air is fighting its way westward towards Belize. But at the moment there is some low level moisture wandering around the coast of Belize causing some outbreaks of showers. What is complicating the weather situation is an area of very cold Arctic air that was supposed to plunge southward but has somehow stalled over the Great Lakes region. The movement of weather at the moment continues to be restricted. This same restriction is what caused the severe flooding in the West Indies the middle of last week.
A weather blocking pattern has been set up. The Low Pressure that was moving westward from the eastern Caribbean has suddenly froze in position and in fact has been pushed back to the east a few hundred kilometres. So Belize is now under the influence of stable dry air. Not sure how long this block is going to last.
There is a forecast for rain tonight but not quite sure were it is coming from. There is a cold front approaching the Yucatan which could trigger some rain. However, approaching from the east is an area of strong subsidence, so any rain is likely to be just brief showers. Will have to see what things look like in the morning.
There is a storm cell developing off the southern coast of Belize that looks like it might be a threat. Will issue an update on this if required. The cell is situated in a frontal trough so there is potential for intensification.
There was a break in the rainy weather yesterday with sunshine most of the day. But rain moved in again this morning before sunrise and at 9 AM have measured about 20 mm. The total rain fall since last Tuesday is now 4.7 inches or 120 mm. The ground is now even more saturated than previously. Evaporation has been low over the past month due to lack of sun and light winds. The upper air at the moment is streaming up from the SSW while at the same time a cold front is pushing down from the north. Not sure what is going to happen next.
After several weeks of no significant weather except for a few light showers, a change is about to occur. There is a narrow band of very dry air to the east of Belize and encroaching into this is an area of active weather. Entering into the northern Gulf of Mexico is a very cold air mass which is pushing south. Looks like there is going to be a collision between these weather systems and this could result in some heavy rainfall over the next few days. To complicate things, a large coronal hole is opening up on the sun which should cause a strong solar wind to hit the Earth towards the end of the week.