Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Too Windy to Drive on the Tehuantepec Isthmus, Mexico

As we traveled along the coast of Oaxaca, we anticipated driving across the Isthmus of Tehuantepec.  This is the narrowest part of land between the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific Ocean in Mexico (see map at the bottom).  The geography of this area lends itself to some crazy winds.  During the winter, gusts are so strong they can knock over semi-trucks.  We had read about this happening, but hoped we would not be toppled as we drove through the area.

Unfortunately, the winds were so strong and gusty that we decided to stop driving and hang out in the nearby city of Tehuantepec.  As windsurfers and kitersurfers, we have chased wind in the Columbia River Gorge, Baja California, Western Australia, and in New Zealand's roaring 40's, but we'd never experienced anything like this. It was truly scary.

There wasn't much for us to see or do in Tehuantepec.  Although, interestingly, it has a reputation for being a matriarchal society, hence this cool statue (below) at the entrance to town.

Statue of La Tehuana in Tehuantepec, Mexico

Tehuantepec, Oaxaca and "the isthmus"

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