As of 11:00 a.m. AST on Sunday, September 4, 2011 (NHC Advisory #26): Hurricane Katia has intensified to a Cateogry 2 hurricane, with maximum sustained winds of 100 mph. Katia is currently moving NW (305°) at 12 mph, with additional strengthening forecast for the next few days. It is possible that Katia could reach major hurricane strength by Monday.
Katia passed just south of Buoy 41044 this morning, which reported gusts of 93 knots (107 mph) at 9:50 a.m. AST. Significant wave heights of 32.5 feet were also reported at the station an hour earlier.
Looking at the Wavewatch models, the Cape Canaveral forecast shows a moderate-period ESE (108°) swell building throughout the week, with the swell direction turning east, then east-northeast by next weekend. Swell wave heights are forecast to peak on Thursday afternoon, with swell conditions of 8 feet at 15 seconds (East, 84°).
Further north, the forecast for Buoy 44025 (33 NM South of Islip, NY) shows a southeast swell building throughout the week, with solid moderate-period swell conditions on Thursday and Friday (7-8 feet at 13-14 seconds), good news for the 2011 Quiksilver Pro New York, which is already underway. In the event trials, Asher Nolan persevered in challenging conditions to move into the main event, where he will face Kelly Slater in the first round.