Hurricane Jose remains a 75-mph Category 1 hurricane far east of the Bahamas that is forecast to do an unusual loop before taking a northerly route.
The storm, which followed Irma through the tropical Atlantic, was expected to spin back on itself, leaving some experts to believe the cooler water it had turned up previously would keep it weak for the short term, even dipping below hurricane-force over the next couple of days.
As of the 5 p.m. advisory, Jose is expected to remain at roughly 75 mph – still a Category 1 hurricane.
The National Hurricane Center called Jose an “amorphous blob of deep convection,” in its 11 a.m. advisory, and into more of a “comma-type pattern” at 5 p.m.
“The models aren’t great with resolving cold wakes,” said Phil Klotzbach, a hurricane researcher at Colorado State University. “Jose was almost up to a Cat 5 at one point, so that brought up some pretty cool water and I’m all for storms double backing and weakening.”
Jeff Masters, co-founder of Weather Underground, said while forecast models show Jose moving north with the U.S. an unlikely target, it could still come within a few hundred miles of the mid-Atlantic U.S. coast.
“Canada appears more like than the U.S. to receive a hit from Jose at this point, but it is too early to be a believer in these long-range model forecasts,” Masters wrote in his Cat 6 blog on Weather Underground.
While hurricanes doing clockwise loops are rare, they are not unheard of.
Masters said Hurricane Ivan did a similar loop that resulted in two U.S. landfalls in 2004.
“It could be flirting with the Outer Banks, but that wouldn’t happen until next week,” said Jonathan Erdman, an digital meteorologist with Weather.com. “But for now, the majority of guidance says it’s not something to be immediately concerned about.”