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Tropical Storm Andres, season's first, eyed by surfers, anglers in Baja Sur

June 22, 2009 |  8:51 am


**Updated with swell information from Surfline

The first tropical storm of  the season in the eastern Pacific might become a hurricane briefly Tuesday, with sustained winds of 73 mph or stronger, but later in the week, as it skirts Cabo San Lucas and tracks westward, it is expected to diminish and ultimately will dissipate in cooler water northwest of Baja California's tip.

That's the forecast, anyway.

Regardless, Tropical Storm Andres will make its presence known in Baja California Sur. Surfers, however, are likely to benefit only farther up the Sea of Cortez, reports Sean Collins of Surfline.

"There might be some swell opportunities up inside the gulf farther away from the storm, but most of southernmost Baja, like Cabo and the East Cape, will likely have poor, stormy and onshore wind conditions," Collins said via email. "As Andres tries to move farther west off Baja it will run into cooler water and will lose strength very quickly, so it’s very unlikely it will hold its strength to send any waves up along the Pacific coast of Baja or Southern California.

Collins added: "On the good side, Andres will help to push warmer water up closer to Baja, which will help future tropical storms to hold better strength within Baja and Southern California’s swell window. Right now we have a very cold wall of ocean water off the Pacific coast of Baja that will literally shut down any tropical storms or hurricanes from sending any swell father north.

"Once that water warms up over the next month or so storms will be able to maintain their strength within the swell windows to send swell farther north. Currently our only possibility for tropical swell is if the storms stay very far to the south about 500 miles south of Baja over warmer water, but most storms prefer to move farther north at this stage."

Andres might also affect fishing opportunities by forcing the closure of Cabo San Lucas marina and other ports.

Above is a National Hurricane Center graphic that plots the predicted path and development of Andres. Stay tuned for updates.

-- Pete Thomas

Graphic courtesy of the National Hurricane Center