CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Up front, I want to make clear that regardless of what this storm is named, the forecast is going to be similar. I also want to stay ahead of a possible naming nuance with this system. Ok...
Tropical Depression 3 is in the Bay of Campeche and sitting fairly stationary this morning - winds just below tropical storm strength. The forecast for TD3 is to strengthen to a Tropical Storm, becoming Cristobal today. It's possible that because of its interaction with Mexico (staying stationary in the Bay of Campeche for a few days), it weakens and falls apart. If..IF..that happens, a new low pressure center would likely develop in the same spot of the Bay of Campeche, becoming Tropical Depression 4 and eventually Dolly on its movement north through the western Gulf of Mexico. If Tropical Depression 3 stays together, it'll be Cristobal. That's the naming nuance.
So, whether it's Tropical Storm Cristobal or Dolly, the forecast for this storm remains the same - a tropical storm moving north through the western Gulf of Mexico. Beyond the forecast cone, I overlayed the spaghetti plot with models suggesting a landfall between Southeastern Texas and Louisiana Monday morning. Below is that image plus a plausible solution from the European model showing a tropical storm making landfall near the TX/LA border.
Per usual, as more data becomes available, the forecast will evolve and we will be here to adjust as needed. At this point, it is something to watch intently, but not worry about.