165: WRI on Hurricane Matthew

Weather Routing Inc. provides all of the forecasting for the passages Mia & I run aboard Isbjorn. I consult with them to plan the best departure window before a passage, and once offshore can get updates on-demand when I feel I need them. Jeremy Davis & Amanda Delaney, meteorologists for WRI, came by Isbjorn during last week’s Annapolis Boat Show to talk weather, namely, Hurricane Matthew, which we spent the majority of the episode discussing.

Hurricane Matthew is the subject of most of today’s episode. It’s with a heavy heart that I report that one of our best friends lost their boat in the storm literally only hours after we recorded this, on the Friday of Annapolis Boat Show. It’s a long story, but they were forced to leave the boat, an Ericsson 35, in Daytona after having to replace their engine following a winter cruising in the Bahamas. It was a chain of events that started all the way back in April, culminating in the worst news you’d ever want to hear as a boat owner. They’d owned the boat for nearly 30 years.

I’m in Connecticut as I record this, at my producer Liz’ apartment. Big thanks to Liz for setting up our first university lecture at her school at UConn Avery Point, definitely one of the more beautiful campus’ I’ve visited. And thanks to all of you who came out to hear us talk ocean sailing! We had a blast! And if there’s anyone out there listening who wants to set up a talk at their school, please reach out! Mia & I would love to come and chat and hang out on campus!

Additional voices on the podcast:


Topics discussed in the podcast including links:

  • The latest updates on Hurricane Matthew & Hurricane Nicole
  • National Hurricane Center NOAA
  • At the time of recording the podcast, Matthew was just east of Cape Canaveral.
  • WRI are predicting a lot of fresh and salt water flooding during the current hurricanes
  • Beyond 5 days the forecast can pretty much only be used as guidance.
  • Andy and WRI discussed previous Hurricanes and Tropical Storms,  such as Hurricane Gordon in the 90th that hit Florida multiple times, Katrina in the Gulf of Mexico
  • Jeff Masters blog on Weatherunderground.com
  • The difference between the GFS and the European model, they are much better than before but you still need to interpret them.
  • Between Amanda and Jeremy they have done about 80 000 forecasts.
  • The drama created by weather.com and other media.
  • Where the responsibility lays when it comes to weather decision.
  • WRI are consultants and the ultimate responsibility lays with the master of the vessel.
  • The exceptionally warm water in the Altantic this year
  • The challenge of sailing to a schedule with crew and weather. Bottom line -  oat and weather first!
  • Hurricane Sean who popped up in the Sub-tropics during Andy’s first C1500 rally.
  • Wrong-way Lenny in 1999
  • The climate change vs patternes repeating themselves
  • What is Windshear?
  • NOAA "Hurricane Hunters" flights
  • 90 penetrations of the eye of Matthew by "Hurricane Hunters"
  • Hurricane center has gone back all the way to 1849ish and looking at tracks from ship reports and telegraph reports when weather reports was logged that way. A lot of storms was then missed or inaccurate information because there was no satellite images and you could then not tell if they were tropical or non-tropical lows.
  • Future prediction of weather
  • WRI forecast worldwide which is very unique. 

Books mentioned in the podcast



Read more about WRI and the services they provide on their website wriwx.com