Hurricane Brushes Puerto Vallarta, Heads Up Mexico Coast

MEXICO CITY (AP) -- Hurricane Nora is churning northward up Mexico's Pacific Coast toward the narrow Gulf of California, after making a sweep past the Puerto Vallarta area.

Authorities in Mexico's Jalisco state, where Nora made a brief landfall Saturday night crossing the cape south of Puerto Vallarta, said there were no early reports of serious damage. But forecasters warned that people along Mexico's central and northern Pacific Coast should be alert to the dangers of flooding, mudslides and perilous surf.

Nora had maximum sustained winds of 75 mph (120 kph) on Sunday morning, with tropical storm force winds extending out 105 miles (165 kilometers). It was centered about 30 miles (50 kilometers) southeast of Mazatlan, and heading north-northwest at 12 mph (19 kph).

The U.S. National Hurricane Center said Nora was likely to keep dragging along the coast and gradually weaken to a tropical storm by Sunday night before entering the Gulf of California.

The storm was predicted to keep moving north up the gulf, before weakening further to a tropical depression and heading inland toward the Arizona border region. The storm's remnants could bring heavy rains by midweek to the U.S. Southwest and central Rockies, the hurricane center said.

The center said some areas along the west coast of Mexico could see rainfall totals from 8 to 12 inches (20 to 30 centimeters) with even more in isolated spots.