Tropical Cyclone Report
Tropical Storm Paul
25 -29 October 2000

Miles B. Lawrence
National Hurricane Center
18 November 2000

Paul was a tropical storm that moved mostly westward across the tropical eastern Pacific basin for several days.

a. Synoptic history

Paul developed as a disturbance in the intertropical convergence zone and was first identifiable as an area of thunderstorms on 22 October, located several hundred miles south-southeast of the Gulf of Tehuantepec. It is difficult to determine with certainty, but a wave-like area of thunderstorms located in the western Caribbean on the 21st may have moved into the vicinity of the above disturbance on the 22nd and contributed to its development. The convection moved westward and gradually consolidated. First visible satellite imagery on the 25th showed a low-level center had formed overnight and tropical depression status and the best track begins at 0600 UTC of this day.

Best track positions are plotted in Figure 1. Figure 2 and Figure 3 show plots of best-track wind speed and pressure curves as a function of time, along with the data on which they are based. Table 1 lists best track position, maximum one-minute surface wind speed, and minimum central sea-level pressure at six-hour intervals.

Paul's track was basically westward at 15 knots for the nearly four days that it was a tropical cyclone. It turned west-northwestward and slowed on the 26th while passing south of an amplifying trough along the west coast of North America, but resumed a westward motion within 24 hours.

The cyclone experienced strong mostly westerly vertical shear during its existence as the low-level center was often exposed to the west of the deep convection. Paul is estimated to have become a tropical storm at 1200 UTC on the 26 about 900 n mi south-southwest of the southern tip of Baja California, and reached its peak intensity of 40 knots six hours later. Convection occasionally flared up for the next two days, but the low-level center was lost by the 29th, and Paul dissipated on this day about 1200 n mi southwest of the southern tip of Baja California.

b. Meteorological statistics

Satellite data were the basis for all determinations concerning the best track.

c. Casualty and damage statistics

There were no reports of death or damage.

d. Forecast and warning critique

Paul was a tropical storm for only 30 hours, not long enough for verification statistics beyond 24 hours. The jog to the north on the 26th was correctly anticipated by the official forecasts as well as by a number of the guidance models.

Table 1. Best track for Tropical Storm Paul, 25 - 29 October 2000.
Position Pressure
Wind Speed
Lat. (°N)Lon. (°W)
25/060010.2108.4100725tropical depression
120010.3115.4100535tropical storm
28/000011.7122.0100630tropical depression
26/180010.3116.7100340minimum pressure

Figure 1. Best track positions for Tropical Storm Paul, 25 - 29 October 2000.

Figure 2. Best track one-min. wind speed curve for Tropical Storm Paul, 25 - 29 October 2000.

Figure 3. Best track minimum central pressure curve for Tropical Storm Paul, 25 - 29 October 2000.


Last updated January 31, 2001