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Estelle in Eastern Pacific forecast to become major hurricane before weakening

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                                Hurricane Estelle’s 5-day forecast track.


    Hurricane Estelle’s 5-day forecast track.

Hurricane Estelle is expected to strengthen into a major hurricane in the Eastern Pacific, with little change as of this morning, according to the National Hurricane Center of Miami.

As of 11 a.m., the center of Hurricane Estelle was about 365 miles south-southwest of the southern tip of Baja, Calif., with maximum sustained winds of 80 mph and higher gusts.

Estelle is moving west-northwest near 14 mph, with the general motion expected to continue for the next few days.

NHC said little change in strength is expected through Tuesday, but a steady weakening is then expected to follow for the next few days.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 25 miles from the center, while tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 105 miles.

Swells generated by Estelle are affecting portions of the coast of southwestern Mexico, west-central Mexico, and the southern Baja, Calif. peninsula. These are likely to continue for another day or so and could cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions.

Forecasters from the National Weather Service in Honolulu said some longer period energy from what will then be Tropical Cyclone Estelle in the far Eastern Pacific may affect east shores Thursday night through Saturday.

A steady weakening trend is expected to begin in a day or so and Estelle is forecast to become a post-tropical cyclone within a few days, well before it reaches the Central Pacific, the National Hurricane Center said.

The south shores of all Hawaiian isles, meanwhile, are under high-surf warning due to a very large south swell in the wake of former Tropical Storm Darby through 6 p.m. today.

Hawaii’s south shores experienced historic swells, which kept lifeguards busy over the weekend. This morning, the swell is expected to bring surf of 15 to 20 feet before decreasing to 14 to 18 feet this afternoon.

Officials warn of dangerous, breaking surf and rip currents, and ocean water occasionally sweeping across portions of beaches, along with inundation of low-lying sections of south shores through tonight

Anyone entering the water in these areas could face significant injury or death, officials warned.

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