For most people visiting Mexico, they wish to go to a warm, sunny, coastal location. Most will enjoy a nice week of consistently warm temperatures and plenty of sunlight. However, some times of the year could present weather issues. If a person travels during the monsoon season, they run the risk of experiencing a rainy vacation. However, there is another season that can affect the region more significantly, and pose a serious threat. This of course is the hurricane season.
Hurricanes are strong tropical cyclones that develop through a complicated and sometimes unpredictable process. In order for there to be tropical development, these storms need access to a fuel source: warm water. This is why coastal locations at low to mid latitudes are at a risk of being in the path of a hurricane. Depending on the strength, these storms have the potential to drop enormous amounts of rain. There is also widespread destruction as a result of sustained winds in excess of 150 MPH, and a devastating storm surge.
Mexico is interesting because it is situated in the middle of common hurricane paths, and has coasts which sit on the Gulf of Mexico, as well as the Caribbean Sea, both excellent sources of heat needed for hurricane development. The hurricane season runs from about June to November. It is during these months that the waters are the warmest, due to the temperature lag of the water. Low pressure systems that form off the coast of Africa in the mid Atlantic move west, as they are caught in the trade winds. As they continue to push towards the Americas, they grow in size and power. While some eventually dissipate into clusters of thunderstorms, others develop into monster hurricanes. It is extremely difficult to predict the path of these storms. Most storms tend to strengthen further in the very warm waters of the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico. As the storms move west, they begin to turn towards the north. This results in storms moving up the Eastern United States coast, or into the Gulf of Mexico and then turning northward. It is especially dangerous when storms reach the Gulf because they have an extreme tendency to move unpredictably. The storm could hit anywhere from Florida to Texas, or continue straight into Mexico. The Yucatan Peninsula stands an especial risk because it protrudes out into the Gulf.
There have been numerous hurricanes to make landfall on Mexico, with the most intense resulting in widespread destruction and hundreds of casualties. The unpredictable nature of hurricanes make them very dangerous, especially once they enter the Gulf of Mexico. For people living in Mexico, it is a danger they have come to live with. For the others who wish to vacation in Mexico, be aware of the hurricane dangers during the late summer and fall months.