Tropical Depression Paul Just Offshore Mexico

October 25, 2006
Tropical Storm Paul Nears Mexico's Baja
Weaker Hurricane Paul Maintains Path to Baja

(11:25 p.m.) -- Tropical Depression Paul is just offshore the west coast of mainland Mexico; it passed south of Cabo San Lucas on the Baja California peninsula as a tropical storm early this morning. The storm is expected to strike land sometime overnight -- but further weakning is expected.

At this point, we're awaiting word from our contacts on the extent of damage to Cabo San Lucas, where streets were flooded with ankle-deep water yesterday; the port was shut down, according to media outlets. Cabo hotel owner Sandra Scandiber told the AP: "It looks as though the storm is dissipating and we're not going to get much of anything at all. I don't think today is going to be a beach day, but tomorrow just may be."

After reaching winds of 110 miles per hour and Category Two hurricane status on Monday, Paul weakened to a tropical storm, easing potential threat to coastal areas; maximum sustained winds are now clocking in around 30 miles per hour, and additional weakening is expected overnight.

Tropical storm warnings for Baja California and Mexico's west coast have been called off -- but heavy rainfall is still expected. Several cruise lines have altered Mexican Riviera itineraries due to the path of the storm:

Carnival Pride will call at Ensenada today in place of Puerto Vallarta; remain at sea on Thursday in lieu of a call at Mazatlan; skip Cabo San Lucas on Friday and instead head to San Diego; and replace a sea day Saturday with a call at Catalina.

Carnival Spirit will remain at sea today instead of calling at Manzanillo.

Holland America
Oosterdam missed a call at Mazatlan yesterday but will otherwise sail as scheduled.

Zaandam is scheduled to call at Mazatlan on Thursday; a spokesman for the line tells us they will subtitute a port or add a sea day if necessary, but nothing is set in stone.

Royal Caribbean
Vision of the Seas will not call at Mazatlan today. Instead, the ship will make a port call in Manzanillo, and continue from there with its scheduled itinerary.