Tropical Storm Kyle - October 10-12, 2002

  Kyle formed from a non-tropical low pressure system in the central North Atlantic Ocean. A cold front moved across
Bermuda on 13 September and stalled to the southeast of the island by 15 September. The stationary front gradually
weakened and became an elongated area of low pressure by 18 September. A sharp mid-level shortwave trough
moved off the southeast coast of the United States and likely acted as the triggering mechanism for the development
of a stationary low pressure center by the morning of the 19th about 750 n mi east-southeast of Bermuda. Thunderstorms
gradually developed into narrow bands a few hundred miles away from the well-defined low-level circulation center.
Surface winds gradually increased to 25 kt early on 20 September and the overall satellite cloud pattern became much
better organized. By early afternoon, it is estimated that Subtropical Depression Twelve had developed about 715 n mi
east-southeast of Bermuda.

Later that day, the system made a clockwise loop as it became embedded in weak steering between its parent upper-
level low to the south and a mid-latitude trough to the north.  Based on satellite estimates, the cyclone intensified into
Subtropical Storm Kyle on the night of the 20th when it was about 680 n mi east of Bermuda. While making the loop,
thunderstorms developed around the low-level center and Kyle gradually acquired warm-core, tropical characteristics.
It is estimated that Kyle became a tropical storm just after noon on the 22nd about 760 n mi east of Bermuda. Still
under the influence of weak steering currents, Tropical Storm Kyle drifted erratically toward the southwest for about a
week and steadily intensified. Kyle became a hurricane on the morning of the 25th while 550 n mi east-southeast of
Bermuda.  The storm peaked, with maximum sustained winds of 85 mphm, during the morning of the 26th about 425
n mi east-southeast of Bermuda. Kyle maintained this intensity for the next 24 hours before gradually weakening under
the influence of moderate northwesterly to northerly vertical shear.

After Kyle weakened below tropical storm strength after noon on the 30th, the cyclone made a slow counter-clockwise
loop about 300 n mi west of Bermuda from 5-8 October. Afterwards, Kyle moved westward and then northwestward
before making landfall along the South Carolina coast late on the 11th. During this period, fluctuations in intensity
occurred and Kyle strengthened back into a tropical storm on 1, 6, and 11 October.

After making its first landfall near McClellanville, South Carolina just at noon on the 11th, Tropical Storm Kyle moved
northeastward and skirted the remaining upper coastline of South Carolina. Its center moved inland again a few hours
later near Long Beach, North Carolina around 5 pm EST. Kyle weakened to a tropical depression by the evening of the
11th near Surf City, North Carolina and then strengthened back into a tropical storm over Pamlico Sound six hours later.
Shortly thereafter, it exited the eastern portion of the state near Nags Head around 3 am EST. The cyclone eventually
merged with a cold front later that morning, when it was located about 280 n mi south-southwest of Nantucket,
Massachusetts.  Kyle lasted for 22 days, making it the third longest-lived Atlantic tropical cyclone, after Ginger of
1971 and Inga of 1969.  Below is the track of Kyle, provided by the National Hurricane Center.  

The storm total rainfall map below was constructed using data provided by the National Climatic Data Center.

Tropical Storm Kyle (2002) Rainfall Kyle (2002) Color Filled Rainfall on a Black Background
Kyle (2002) Rainfall on White Background

Below are the calendar for Daily Precipitation Maps.  Note that the 24-hour periods end at 12z, or 8 am EDT, that morning.

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat

10 11 12