Deceptively Lame Start to an Epic Season
|Date||16 Sep 2013|
Ingrid looked good for a brief moment—a small-but-healthy cyclone deep in the Bay of Campeche. My previous gambles on hurricanes here had paid off—with two great chases in 2010—so I went for it again. Jorge and I met in Monterrey and hurried down to Tamaulipas in a chase that almost perfectly echoed our Hurricane Alex expedition. But the similarities ended there. Shear tore Ingrid apart as it approached the coast, so that it weakened to below hurricane strength as it came ashore near La Pesca. Stuck on a washed-out portion of Highway 180 near Lavaderos, we witnessed yawn-inducing gusts to gale force and a pressure drop of 1.5 mb as Ingrid's center passed just to our N around dawn. While we penetrated the remnant S "eyewall"—thus preserving our unbroken streak of core penetrations—this chase was a bust. I returned to California feeling frustrated and washed up. Little did I know that the most epic chase season of my career was just starting...
Stuck in a childhood habit, I still plot points on paper tracking maps when chasing—despite also being a technonerd who loves radar and GPS apps (and all of the other benefits of mobile technology). Old habits die hard!
Notice I stopped tracking Ingrid when it was still a hurricane—perhaps because I sensed a bust brewing.