Hurricane Bret

Hurricane Bret began as a poorly-organized tropical depression in the southern Bay of Campeche on August 18, 1999 (21Z). He meandered for over 36 hours in the warm Gulf waters... and eventually achieved hurricane status (the first of the season).

Once he headed north at a higher speed, his intensity also increased. The Category 1, 2, 3, and 4 'checkpoints' were all achieved in a 22-hour period (from 03Z on 8/21 to 01Z on 8/22). During this rapid intensification period, his pressure fell 28 millibars.

By the afternoon of the 21st, it became clear that Bret was no longer targeting Mexico... instead, the south Texas coast. As the hours ticked by, the "ground zero", or point of landfall, was being narrowed down.

At about 23Z on 8/22, Bret made landfall on Padre Island (about 45 miles south of Corpus Christi) as a Category 4 hurricane. Maximum sustained winds were reported to be 140mph and the pressure had fallen to 945mb.

A GOES 8 image (visible, 1km res) of Bret as he makes landfall in Kenedy County, TX.
The same image, but with a wild color enhancement added, just for fun.
A 3-channel composite image from GOES 8 over Bret a couple of hours before landfall.
A GOES 8 visible loop over Bret from 1200Z through 2345Z on 22AUG. (The loop is in MPG format, so unfortunately, the frame quality leaves something to be desired. An improved loop can be found here.)
Brownsville's NEXRAD picked up Bret very well (likewise for Corpus Christi) as he marched inland on the afternoon of August 22.
Bret's track across the Bay of Campeche and the Gulf of Mexico. (You will need a PostScript viewer to view the track image after you unzip it.)

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