Hurricane Nate 2017


Jun 12, 2004
Sunrise, Florida
Good day all,

Kinda the "forgotten hurricane" of 2017 despite it being small but significant as it struck the Biloxi, Mississippi area on October 7, 2017. Below are the details of my hurricane intercept on this storm...

Summary: This area shows pictures taken from the interception and observation of category-one hurricane Nate in southern Mississippi near Ocean Springs and Biloxi (Harrison County) along Highway 90 late on October 7, 2017. This hurricane was a small and compact storm, and came in with winds weakening from 90 to 85 MPH. Nate was a storm that intensified in the SW Caribbean around October 5, crossing near Nicaragua and Honduras at that time. After getting away from land, it intensified SE of the Yucatan Peninsula early on the 6th, and became a hurricane in the southern Gulf of Mexico. Moving quickly north, hurricane Nate slowly strengthened up to its first USA landfall at the mouth of the Mississippi River during the early evening of October 7. Continuing north, and then recurving northeast, the storm came ashore a second and final time, near Biloxi, Mississippi as a category one hurricane. The storm packed a storm surge from 5-8 feet, mainly ahead and to the right of where the eye came in. A brief period of hurricane forced wind gusts and horizontal rain was encountered in this area, followed by the calm eye. A significant storm surge was also documented affecting the Golden Nugget Casino in Biloxi, with Highway 90 severely flooded. The storm passed on by midnight and early morning of October 8, and quickly weakened to a tropical storm over Alabama, then dissipated a day later over the Ohio Valley area of the United States on October 9. Damage was mainly powerlines, trees, and signs - But storm surge flooding along the path of Nates core was significant. At least 45 people were killed by Nate (mainly in Central America) and damages amounted to almost 3 billion dollars. The total mileage for this portion of the chase was 1638 miles.


A powerful and raging storm surge - Driven ahead of the eye of hurricane Nate - Moves ashore during the late night of October 7 on the east side of Biloxi, Mississippi at the Golden Nugget Casino. The water level here is about 7 feet above normal, and is flooding the first floor of the resort, and making Highway 90 impassible through the area. Storm surge like this, even in a weaker storm, can be deadly along the Gulf of Mexico coast, because the shoaling continental shelf and shallow water extending off the coast.


These are two annotated images of the visible satellite (to the left) during the afternoon of October 7, and the base-reflectivity radar image (to the right) of the storm making landfall around 11 PM later that same day. The main area of wind energy was confined to where and to the right of where the center made landfall. The primary energy cell (or "convective chimney" / hot towers) is the red area on the forward-right side of the eyewall. Storm surge, winds, and rainfall were highest in this area. Inside the eye was calm with foggy / drizzle conditions. Birds can be seen flying overhead in the eye as well. The second half of the storm was not as bad as the first.

Full video of Hurricane Nate is below...

Pictures are below...


Above: The "calm before the storm" at the beach between Biloxi and Gulfport during the afternoon of October 7. Hurricane Nate is lurking no more than 200 miles to our south, and rapidly approaching. With light ENE winds and nearly calm conditions, the only sign a storm is coming is the tides slightly above normal and the grey skies / light rain.


Above: Here is a flooded marina near Ocean Springs, Mississippi on the east side of Biloxi Bay as storm surge rises.


Above: Power flashes visible while crossing Biloxi Bay via the causeway back into Biloxi. Most likely the eyewall winds knocking out power, or flooding from storm surge causing an electrical short.


Above: Storm surge flooding covering the west side of Biloxi Bay across Highway 90 just before the eye of hurricane Nate arrives.


Above: Chaser Derek Sibley standing on a crosswalk barrier with Highway 90 flooded in the calm eye of Hurricane Nate.