How do the 3 island protect Mazatlan from hurricanes

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The oceanographer Armando Villalobos Loera explains the function of the Three Islands of Mazatlan, although they are rather two of them.

MAZATLAN.- The Three Islands of Mazatlan are an icon, a landmark of the coastal walk and in the memory of Mazatlecos, and ultimately the view of the Pacific Ocean would not be the same without them, but their function is not merely aesthetic, but rather in the event of a hurricane, it serves as a barrier. Here we explain what it is.

These islands are part of the more than 900 islands in the Gulf of California, and they joined the Decree Zone of Reserve and Refuge for Migratory Birds and Wild Fauna.

According to the oceanographer Armando Villalobos Loera, two of the three islands that are located off the coast of Mazatlan, to be exact the “Isla Pajaros” and the “Isla Venados” serve as protection of the Golden Zone.


And surely you are wondering how it protects it? The two islands prevent the waves in the Golden Zone from being greater than in the rest of the beaches of Mazatlán, for example, if the waves reach 2 meters on the beach that is located in front of the Mazatlán Aquarium, in the Golden Zone, it is only 80 centimeters.

“The two islands amortize the energy of the waves and the onslaught of that energy on the waves.”

Right now you may be thinking “Ah Oc”, protect the Golden Zone, but what about the rest of the Mazatlán coast? The waves are higher on other beaches, but the advantage that the buildings and hotels that are located on Del Mar Avenue have is that there is a boardwalk, which was built 6 meters high, but for the Golden Zone it is different, there there is no boardwalk or other barrier to protect the buildings, so if the Three Islands did not exist, the hotels would have a constant problem with waves and tides.

Here we leave you an example so that you understand it better, in the words of the oceanographer, Mazatlan has never gone through a hurricane as strong as the iconic ‘Olivia’, which hit in 1975, and which produced waves of up to 8 meters high, so if a hurricane of that category were to hit, the islands could reduce the size of those waves and cause less material damage to the hotel strip located in the Golden Zone, as it did with “Olivia.”

happens to know

Isla Venados protects during the summer, when the waves come from the south-southwest, while Isla Pajaros protects during the winter, when the waves come from the north.

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