El Niño: Turkey Day tropical storms and tuna

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While tropical storms in the Eastern Pacific (you know, the West Coast of the Americas) are not uncommon late in October, it is now late November and honing in fast on Thanksgiving and Tropical Depression Twenty-Two E could be a named tropical storm by the time you read this. Ever heard of El Niño? Well the budding storm is forming right on top of a blob of 29- to 30-degree Centigrade (84- to 86-degree Fahrenheit) water brewed by this year’s El Niño event. This is basically the same area of water that earlier this fall gave birth to Hurricane Patricia — the strongest hurricane on record for this part of the world.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) sees nothing but more robust days in the short term for Twenty-Two E:

“Strengthening seems likely during the next few days…in an environment of less than 10 kt of shear. The intensity models respond to these conducive conditions in showing steady intensification, and the NHC intensity forecast lies near the upper end of the guidance envelope given the expected favorable conditions.”

Although the system could run into unfavorable conditions after three days or so (Thanksgiving Day), at that point the extreme forecasts have the storm packing winds up to 90 knots and heading in the general direction of Cabo and the East Cape, home to some of the best kayak fishing in the world at locations like Rancho Leonero Resort. The entire cape complex got hammered last season during the peak of the usual hurricane season and needs no holiday surprises.

Meanwhile Southern California has missed the brunt of northern storms that brought wind and lower water temperatures. Still every time a system passed striped marlin and even blue marlin were caught and the weekend before Thanksgiving brought air temperatures pushing 90 degrees and yellowfin tuna just 20 miles offshore.

It’s been a crazy year and nothing indicates that is going to change anytime soon.