NEW ORLEANS — Currently, there are no tropical threats to the United States, but it's May and hurricane season 2022 will be here in less than a month. The official start of the season is June 1st, but that doesn't mean things can't form before that date. Since 2015, at least one storm has formed before the official start of the season.
By the end of this week all eyes will be on the western Caribbean and Central America and Eastern Pacific. We're seeing model guidance that suggest lower pressure will develop near these areas by this weekend. The big question right now is where does the lowest pressure try to consolidate and how much does it organize.
We currently have two vastly different outcomes if you view our global models. The GFS is aggressive with development, while the European model is more modest and much weaker. The difference between these two models show that we still aren't quite sure at this point.
One possible reason for difference between the model outcomes is how they are depicting steering currents for anything that does try to develop. The GFS has a weaker high, while the European has a stronger high pressure. In reality it's hard to say which model is handling this accurately this far out, but I would say the GFS is probably being too aggressive and the trend will be toward the European model and a system moving over Central America or the Eastern Pacific. It's also possible the eventual outcome is somewhere between the models. This is normal when we're this far out (5+ days) from something potentially developing.
When you look at both scenarios it's possible that moisture from Central America/Yucatan is pulled north early next week. Now if this was August we'd be much more concerned, but the Gulf still has plenty of shear and dry air this time of year. And looking at the pattern next week, if something tries to move into the Gulf it would probably be weak. As always things change and we have plenty of time to watch things...maybe nothing forms at all!
The National Hurricane Center began tropical weather outlooks every six hours on May 15th.