Jul. 7th, 2005

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The WTF Action News Storm Team is rearin' and ready to have a go at another hurricane season! We're off to an early start this year, with Hurricane Dennis already the fourth named storm of the year, and it is only early in July yet! Unprecedented, and very dangerous. Let's take a look at Dennis. Except we're going to use the French version of the name, Denis, since we like it better.

Denis is a particularly well-endowed storm for this time of year, already a Category 3 as it grows and surges while parting the untamed tropical bush of Jamaica and Cuba. Satellite imagery shows the growing storm to be bulging with enthusiasm and desire, and Denis appears poised to bury himself to the hilt in the hot and moist conditions of the Gulf of Mexico. Following this initial penetration of the Gulf, Denis is expected to undergo a series of small expansions and contractions in intensity. We here at the WTF Action News Storm Team pride ourselves on educating the public, so here is your Weather Word™ for the day: the official term for this fluctuation of intensity is "throbbing".

The throbbing will continue as Denis moves with ever-greater intensity and rapidity through the warm and juicy Gulf, until he makes landfall and blows his gargantuan sloshing load onto the northern Gulf coast, likely near the spring break hotspot of Panama City Beach, FL. On satellite imagery, this explosion of cloudiness and precipitation will appear as a big white blob. After Denis comes deep inside the Florida panhandle, he will rapidly dissipate and become flaccid over the southeastern US, probably losing tropical characteristics, or as we in the business say, "go to sleep", somewhere over the mid-Atlantic states.

Below the cut is our forecast map for Denis. The pink shaft indicates the likely path of Denis, with a more intense red color used to indicate the area of greatest likelihood of penetration of the storm center.

Take a look at Denis! )

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