Weather and Storm Tracking Tools for Google Earth

Weather tools in Google EarthThe Hurricane season has officially begun. And the second named storm – Tropical Depression Barry – is currently providing much needed wetness to a dry southeastern US. One of Google Earth’s most powerful features is the ability to pull in real-time information from other sites and overlay the information for visualization. Weather data is one of my favorite applications of this ability. Imagine pulling in the latest satellite photos, radar animations, hurricane tracking, live web cams on the ground, sea surface temperature analysis, etc. Well, you can do all that with the set of tools I’ve bundled together into this: the weather and storm tracking tools collection . Simply drag this network link into your Places folder to keep it handy. It won’t take up space until you turn it on. It first loads several folders of weather tools you can explore. Right now it includes: a global hurricane tracking tool, global cloud maps, severe weather warning data and radar data from NOAA for the US, weather observations for the US from WeatherBonk, a real-time day/night viewing tool, and the global annual lightning flash rate map from NASA. Turn on the Hurricanes – Live Positions link to see T.D. Barry’s current position. You will see the past track, forecasted path, current position, and the red dots are nearby web cams. The position o the storm, when a hurricane, will show it’s storm strength (level 1, 2, etc.). These tools were put together by a variety of people in the Google Earth Community. I will add more storm and weather tools to the network link periodically, but if you save this network link, you will automatically see them added. Read about each here:

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was first released. He has worked with 3D computer graphics and VR for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank completed a 5.5 year circumnavigation of the earth by sailboat in June 2015 which you can read about at Tahina Expedition, and is a licensed pilot, backpacker, diver, and photographer.


  1. Jon Blower says:

    Great work! I’ve got that loaded up and will keep an eye on the real-time info. The two Cloud Maps don’t quite line up – it seems that the “Global Cloud Map by C. Parsons” puts the clouds closer to the equator than the “Global Cloud Map”. Do you know what’s going on here?
    By the way, I have been involved in creating an online community to share information about scientific uses of geobrowsing tools like Google Earth: I have linked this blog post from there (hope that’s OK!) and perhaps readers of this blog who are interested in environmental science would like to check out our community and perhaps join.

  2. Michael says:

    I am having a problem getting the weather tools for google earth set up. I opened google earth dragged the link from the blog onto the places folder but when i clik it the only thing that pops up is what looks like cloud cover across like half of the north western hemisphere and 1 location is marked which is darfur. not sure if that was the plan but if not ide love to get the tools working so i can check it out. So all i did was drag from wlog to the place where it says places in the google earth program and cliked the check box. thanx in advance

  3. I found some additional Google Earth weather content from looking through google’s mapplet ( stuff. The site is and they have real-time lightning data, radar, watches and warnings….there’s a promise of some tropical stuff coming…we’ll see.
    The radar looks really good and clean…not much clutter and has an animation. The lightning data is global too…first time I’ve seen that.

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