Hurricane Bud expected to weaken as it heads for Baja

Hurricane Bud strengthened into a Category 3 storm off Mexico's Pacific coast and could gain some more power during the early hours of Tuesday, though forecasters predicted it would soon begin weakening as it moved over cooler waters on a path toward the resorts of the southern Baja California peninsula.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center said Bud's maximum sustained winds had risen to 125 mph (205 kph) late Monday. Its center was about 395 miles (635 kilometers) south-southeast of the tip of the Baja peninsula and it was moving northwest at 7 mph (11 kph).

Forecasters said Bud could strengthen some more but predicted a slow weakening trend would set in later Tuesday and likely reduce it to a tropical storm by Wednesday night. The forecast called for Bud to approach southern Baja as a tropical storm late Thursday.

The center said the hurricane's core was moving farther from Mexico's southwestern coast but still could generate dangerous heavy surf and rip currents over the coming days. Rainfall of 3 to 6 inches (75 to 150 millimeters), with isolated patches of 10 inches (250 millimeters), was possible over much of that region into Tuesday afternoon.

Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Aletta weakened into remnant low pressure system in the Pacific, far from the Mexican coast. The storm had been a Category 4 hurricane Friday, with winds of 140 mph (220 kph).