Hurricane Larry's Incredible Journey

Jason Lock

by on

Updated 80d ago

We've been all Hurricane Larry for some time now. Rightfully so, because ol' Lazza was one heck of a storm -- the likes of which we may never get again.

Larry faded away earlier this week after it was done with the UK and Ireland. We'll be raising a glass in its honour this evening. But just look at Larry's path. From West Africa, all the way up to Greeland. If the term 'boomeranging' didn't mean anything to you, maybe it will now thanks to this handy graphic. (the technical term is recurve, but it just sounds so dry, no?)

Related: Hurricane Larry Blitzes UK and Ireland

West Africa, to the Caribbean, to the US north east, to Greenland and sending swell straight to the UK and Ireland. Boom.

West Africa, to the Caribbean, to the US north east, to Greenland and sending swell straight to the UK and Ireland. Boom.

And of course, there's the fact Larry sent swell to the UK and Ireland when it was a hurricane. Not the dregs of one, like they usually get, but a full-on, wind-laden, gusty bad boy. That's what created the surf on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week.

Anyway, to really get into how spectacular Larry was, MSW forecaster Tony Butt broke it all down: "Larry started off as a tropical wave depression that moved off the coast of West Africa around 29th August. It quickly intensified, becoming a tropical depression on 31st August, a tropical storm on 1st September and a hurricane by 2nd September, reaching Category-3 on the Saffir-Simpson Scale.

"Over the next few days it tracked westwards, gradually arcing around to the west-northwest and expanding into a large system covering a wide area. Around Friday 10th September it turned towards the northeast and accelerated, crossing Newfoundland on Saturday 11th and then moving out into the open Atlantic as a post-tropical storm.

Here's the swell period where you can see that 20seconds was sent straight to the UK when Larry was still a hurricane.

Here's the swell period where you can see that 20seconds was sent straight to the UK when Larry was still a hurricane.

"The westerly movement of the system between 4th and 9th September, combined with the unusually large area of hurricane-force winds on its northern flank generated a pulse of large, long-period swell that produced several days of good surf on the East Coast of the U.S. and Canada. The storm itself arced around to the northeast a considerable distance from the coast, so it didn’t directly affect local conditions.

"Then, around 10th September, while it was just south of Newfoundland, Larry was still a Category-1 hurricane, with a large area of extremely strong winds on its southern flank. This spat out a pulse of swell that spread out across the Atlantic, hitting westerly exposures on Monday 13th with unusually long periods of well over 20 secs."

And there we have it, we may not see a Larry for some time, so join us in saluting him out.