Chris Wilson is grateful for support from the University of Liverpool and the Proudman Oceanography Laboratory. This study also received support from NERC RAPID Grant NER/T/S/2002/00439. The authors thank two anonymous reviewers for their insightful comments, as well as N. Maximenko and P. P. Niiler for the use of their mean dynamic height dataset. The altimeter products were produced by the CLS Space Oceanography Division (EVK2-CT2001-00117) and with support from CNES; the ERA-40 products were obtained from ECMWF; and the AVHRR Oceans Pathfinder SST data were obtained from the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA (more information is available online at http://podaac.jpl.nasa.gov).
Blackmon, M. L., , J. M. Wallace, , N-C. Lau, , and S. L. Mullen, 1977: An observational study of the Northern Hemisphere wintertime circulation. J. Atmos. Sci., 34 , 1040–1053.
Broccoli, A., , and S. Manabe, 1992: The effects of orography on midlatitude Northern Hemisphere dry climates. J. Climate, 5 , 1181–1201.
Chelton, D. B., , R. A. deSzoeke, , M. G. Schlax, , K. E. I. Naggar, , and N. Siwertz, 1998: Geographical variability of the first baroclinic Rossby radius of deformation. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 28 , 433–460.
Ducet, N., , P-Y. Le Traon, , and G. Reverdin, 2000: Global high-resolution mapping of ocean circulation from TOPEX/Poseidon and ERS-1 and -2. J. Geophys. Res., 105 , 19477–19498.
Gill, A. E., , J. S. A. Green, , and A. J. Simmons, 1974: Energy partition in the large-scale ocean circulation and the production of mid-ocean eddies. Deep-Sea Res., 21 , 499–528.
Gille, S. T., 1997: The Southern Ocean momentum balance: Evidence for topographic effects from numerical model output and altimeter data. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 27 , 2219–2232.
Hallberg, R., 1997: Localized coupling between surface and bottom intensified flow over topography. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 27 , 911–988.
Holopainen, E. O., , and A. H. Oort, 1981: On the role of large-scale transient eddies in the maintenance of the vorticity and enstrophy of the time-mean atmospheric flow. J. Atmos. Sci., 38 , 270–280.
Hoskins, B. J., 1983: Modelling of transient eddies and their feedback on the mean flow. Large-Scale Dynamical Processes in the Atmosphere, B. J. Hoskins and R. P. Pearce, Eds., Academic Press, 169–199.
Hoskins, B. J., , and K. I. Hodges, 2002: New perspectives on the Northern Hemisphere winter storm tracks. J. Atmos. Sci., 59 , 1041–1061.
Hoskins, B. J., , I. N. James, , and G. H. White, 1983: The shape, propagation and mean-flow interaction of large-scale weather systems. J. Atmos. Sci., 40 , 1595–1612.
Hughes, C. W., 2005: The nonlinear vorticity balance of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current. J. Geophys. Res., 110 .C11008, doi:10.1029/2004JC002753.
Illari, L., , and J. C. Marshall, 1983: On the interpretation of eddy fluxes during a blocking episode. J. Atmos. Sci., 40 , 2232–2242.
Inatsu, M., , and B. J. Hoskins, 2004: The zonal asymmetry of the Southern Hemisphere winter storm track. J. Climate, 17 , 4882–4892.
Johnson, T. J., , R. H. Stewart, , C. K. Shum, , and B. D. Tapley, 1992: Distribution of Reynolds stress carried by mesoscale variability in the Antarctic Circumpolar Current. Geophys. Res. Lett., 19 , 1201–1204.
Lau, N-C., 1979: The observed structure of tropospheric stationary waves and the local balances of vorticity and heat. J. Atmos. Sci., 36 , 996–1016.
Levitus, S., , and T. P. Boyer, 1994: Temperature. Vol. 4, World Ocean Atlas 1994, NOAA Atlas NESDIS 4, 117 pp.
Levitus, S., , R. Burgett, , and T. P. Boyer, 1994: Salinity. Vol. 3, World Ocean Atlas 1994, NOAA Atlas NESDIS 3, 99 pp.
Lindzen, R. S., , and B. Farrell, 1980: A simple approximate result for the maximum growth rate of baroclinic instabilities. J. Atmos. Sci., 37 , 1648–1654.
Maximenko, N. A., , and P. P. Niiler, 2005: Hybrid decade-mean global sea level with mesoscale resolution. Recent Advances in Marine Science and Technology, N. Saxena, Ed., PACON International, 55–59.
Nakamura, M., , and Y. Chao, 2000: Characteristics of three-dimensional quasi-geostrophic transient eddy propagation in the vicinity of a simulated Gulf Stream. J. Geophys. Res., 105 , 11385–11406.
Panetta, R. L., 1993: Zonal jets in wide baroclinically unstable regions: Persistence and scale selection. J. Atmos. Sci., 50 , 2073–2106.
Primeau, F., , and P. Cessi, 2001: Coupling between wind-driven currents and midlatitude storm tracks. J. Climate, 14 , 1243–1261.
Qiu, B., 2000: Interannual variability of the Kuroshio Extension System and its impact on the wintertime SST field. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 30 , 1486–1502.
Rhines, P. B., 1977: The dynamics of unsteady currents. The Sea, E. D. Goldberg, Ed., Marine Modeling, Vol. 6, John Wiley and Sons, 189–318.
Shutts, G. J., 1983: The propagation of eddies in diffluent jetstreams: Eddy vorticity forcing of blocking flow fields. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 109 , 737–761.
Straub, D. N., 1994: Dispersion of Rossby waves in the presence of zonally-varying topography. Geophys. Astrophys. Fluid Dyn., 75 , 107–130.
Tapley, B. D., , D. P. Chambers, , S. Bettadpur, , and J. C. Ries, 2003: Large scale ocean circulation from the GRACE GGM01 Geoid. Geophys. Res. Lett., 30 .2163, doi:10.1029/2003GL018622.
Watts, D. R., , and W. E. Johns, 1982: Gulf Stream meanders: Observations on propagation and growth. J. Geophys. Res., 87 , 9467–9476.