Sahara Dust Plume: The skies are dark in the Caribbean and the historic dust plume will soon spread to the US. USA

Over the weekend, the Saharan dust moved to the Caribbean. By Monday, it had changed the tropical blue skies to a misty brown-gray color.

On Tuesday, this tropical dust plume that increases the sunset, limits the blue sky and reduces the tropical threat continues its journey of 5,000 miles towards the United States.

But before you do, you are leaving these unspoiled islands with a few more days with one of the most important dust events seen in the Caribbean.

“It is definitely historical,” Olga Mayol-Bracero, a researcher at the University of Puerto Rico told CNN Weather. “We knew we were going to be in an extraordinary situation.”

Many of his colleagues across the Caribbean said they have not seen such poor air quality conditions in their entire careers.

A vast cloud of dust from the Sahara darkened the skies of San Juan, Puerto Rico, on Monday.

Aerosols, measured in PM10, at the Mayol-Bracero research station in northeast Puerto Rico, have never reached the levels they have seen in recent days. The records at this station date back 15 years.

It is unusual for dust to be forecast to travel over Central America and the US. USA With such high concentrations, Claire Ryder, a NERC independent research researcher at the University of Reading, told CNN Weather.

“Generally, by the time the Sahara dust has traveled so far, much of it has dispersed and / or deposited in the ocean, so this long-range transport to the Americas would imply much lower concentrations,” Ryder said.

The initial dust outbreak was fueled by a few smaller storm systems over central and western Africa. Several of these thunderstorms caused large-scale downdrafts and haboobs (dust storms) to develop. This led to a large amount of dust rising into the atmosphere from the Sahara, according to Ryder.

At the same time, these little dust storms were occurring. The African Easterly Jet, strong winds in the atmosphere that generally carry dust westward, was abnormally weak in June.

Which means that more dust could accumulate than usual near the west coast of Africa. She was able to be transported westward in a very dense cloud when the plane accelerated again.

This increase in dust thickness has led to the dirty-looking skies seen throughout the Caribbean and poor air quality.

The Caribbean areas known for their crystal clear waters and blue skies turned brownish gray in Puerto Rico on Monday.

“It is without a doubt the most intense large-scale dust event I have ever seen,” Ryder said.

The dust layer is so thick that it can be seen on weather satellites. Astronauts have also seen it from the international space station.

“We flew over this Saharan dust plume in the west central Atlantic Atlantic today,” astronaut Doug Hurly tweeted Sunday. “The area it covers is amazing!”

“Cloudy skies and low visibility will continue today as a major Sahara dust event continues on the islands,” the National Weather Service in San Juan said Tuesday morning.

Dust from the Sahara will arrive in the United States on Thursday morning.

On Wednesday, the dust is forecast to move through the Gulf of Mexico to Texas.

This dust forecast shows the conditions forecast for Thursday.  Darker browns are an indication of where the thickest layer of dust will be found.

On Thursday morning, people in places like Brownsville in Texas and Houston will probably wake up to a beautiful sunrise and a more dangerous than normal sky.

Forecast models do not show the thickest concentration covering most of Central America and Mexico on Thursday.

This dust forecast shows the conditions forecast for Sunday.  Darker browns are an indication of where the thickest layer of dust will be found.

This thicker layer is likely to arrive in Texas on Friday and then turn east. If the forecast model is correct, it will move over most of the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic states over the weekend.

Once you get here, these are the top 3 ways you’ll notice next week’s Saharan dust in the United States, wrote CNN meteorologist Tyler Mauldin.

A difference in heaven

One of the first things you will notice when the Saharan dust layer arrives is that your typical blue sky will have a milky haze.

That milky haze is Saharan dust. Those tiny dust particles raised to tens of thousands of feet in the air do an excellent job scattering the sun’s rays at dusk and dawn, giving way to stunning sunrises and sunsets.

So take those cameras!

Less tropical activity in the Atlantic

Saharan dust from a hurricane is nothing but extremely dry air. Hurricanes hate dry air. A hurricane needs a warm, humid, and calm environment.

As long as the dust from the Sahara is nearby … you will likely see the National Hurricane Center observing fewer areas in the tropics.

Dust cloud allergies

The tiny dust particles that make way for beautiful sunrises and sunsets and help suppress hurricane development don’t always stay within 30,000 feet. Sometimes the particles can reach the surface, greatly affecting people with sensitive allergies.

If you find yourself looking for a scarf this week, or your iPhone to post another incredible photo at sunset on Instagram, thanks to the Saharan dust.