ORLANDO, Fla. – Say it ain’t snow!
The tropics are about to meet winter in the north Atlantic.
Hurricane Sam became one of the longest-lasting major hurricanes on record in the Atlantic as the powerful storm churned safely over open waters.
Tuesday, Sam officially became post tropical, meaning the storm had lost most of its tropical characteristics.
Tropical systems get their energy from warm ocean water and have thunderstorms wrapped tightly around the center. Now, the storm is getting its energy from temperature differences in the atmosphere, like a Nor’easter or a winter-like storm, rather than a hurricane.
These storms can still be extremely intense even though not officially classified as a tropical system. In this case, Sam received a shot in the arm after weakening over the cooler waters of the north Atlantic by merging with another non-tropical system. Watch the explosion in the video below as the two systems combine.
COOL! Check out Hurricane Sam's transition from a tropical system into a non-tropical system. The non-tropical system picks up and #Sam and the two dance around each other as they combine to form one powerful storm in the North Atlantic pic.twitter.com/neSnBJdOyC— Jonathan Kegges (@JonathanKegges) October 6, 2021
The storm is expected to move near Greenland and Iceland by the end of the week, bringing tropical moisture to the colder air of the north Atlantic. This will produce widespread snow and wind to the islands. In addition to several inches of snow, 50-60 mph wind gusts will accompany the storm.
Former tropical systems bringing snow to colder areas isn’t anything new. Hurricane Larry brought snow to parts of Greenland just last month.
Superstorm Sandy, which was a storm much like Sam has become, merged with a non-tropical storm in 2012 and brought heavy snow and blizzard conditions to part of the Appalachian mountains.