Hurricane Noel 2001

Preliminary Report
Hurricane Noel
04 - 06 November 2001


Tropical Storm Allison (TS)
Tropical Storm Barry (TS)
Tropical Storm Chantal (TS)
Tropical Storm Dean (TS)
Hurricane Erin (3)
Hurricane Felix (3)
Hurricane Gabrielle (1)
Hurricane Humberto (2)
Hurricane Iris (4)
Tropical Storm Jerry (TS)
Hurricane Karen (1)
Tropical Storm Lorenzo (TS)
Hurricane Michelle (4)
Hurricane Noel (1)
Hurricane Olga (1)

Hurricane Noel was a short-lived hurricane of subtropical origin.


a. Synoptic History

Noel developed from a non-tropical occluded low that gradually lost its frontal structure. The first appearance of the frontal low in surface synoptic maps was at 0000 UTC 2 November, when a 1002-mb low was analyzed near 32N, 42W. The low deepened and occluded while it moved slowly west-northwestward over the next 48 h. The official "best track" of Noel begins at 0000 UTC 4 November when the system, then 775 nautical miles south of Cape Race, Newfoundland, was being classified as a subtropical cyclone by both the Tropical Analysis and Forecast Branch (TAFB) and the Satellite Analysis Branch (SAB).

The subtropical cyclone drifted northward initially, its speed increasing to about 12 mph by late on 4 November. Convection, which had been limited to the northern semicircle, became more symmetric as it formed a ring around the center with a radius of about 60 nautical miles. The system developed a weak mid-level warm core early on 5 November, strengthened and became a hurricane with 75 mph winds at 1200 UTC that day, about 535 nautical miles south-southeast of Cape Race. By 0000 UTC 6 November, westerly wind shear began to displace and limit convection near the center, and Noel weakened to a tropical storm. Noel then accelerated to the north, and had lost all its convection by 1200 UTC that day, when it became extratropical about 285 nautical miles southeast of Cape Race. The extratropical low was absorbed into a larger extratropical system later that day.

b. Meteorological Statistics

Initial subtropical classifications of 52-58 mph are consistent with a QuikSCAT pass near 0800 UTC 4 November showing peak winds of 52 mph. Although satellite intensity estimates remained constant over the next 30 h, a report from the ship Tellus (call sign WRYG) of 75 mph at 1400 UTC 5 November indicates the system had strengthened. This ship report is the basis for the peak intensity estimate of 75 mph. Microwave sounding data suggested that a weak warm core near 550 mb had developed by about 1000 UTC on the 5th.

c. Casualty and Damage Statistics

There were no reports of damage or casualties associated with Noel.

Maximum Intensity For Hurricane Noel
04 - 06 November, 2001

Position Pressure
Wind Speed
Lat. (°N) Lon. (°W)
05/1200 37.8 50.3 986 75 Category 1 Hurricane