MEXICO (KXAN) — A definite sign of a changing climate is noted by the rapid increase in strength from the major Hurricane Orlene. Winds at 7 a.m. our time Saturday were tropical storm-strength at 65 miles per hour. Three hours later, those wind speeds increased to 75 miles per hour, making Orlene a Category 1 hurricane.

The winds continued to get stronger Saturday afternoon, reaching 105 miles per hour by 6:15 p.m. and upgrading Orlene to a Category 2 hurricane.

A large part of what made this storm increase in strength, in addition to the warm waters of the eastern Pacific Ocean, is that it was moving so slowly. One advisory after another on Saturday through Sunday morning showed the hurricane moving to the north between 5-7 miles per hour, slow enough to increase in strength.

A well-defined eye of major Hurricane Orlene

By 10 p.m. Saturday night, those winds reached 110 miles per hour, just shy of Category 3-level strength (classified as 111-129 miles per hour). It eventually became a Category 3 hurricane by 1 a.m. when winds reached 115 miles per hour — still moving almost at a snail’s pace.

Within the next three hours, Orlene became a Category 4 hurricane, with winds reaching 130 miles per hour. That is where Orlene stayed after sunrise Sunday morning. The 7 a.m. CDT advisory from the National Hurricane Center indicated that same north movement at 7 miles per hour.

The 10 a.m. update showed the winds had dropped to 125 miles per hour, with a slight increase in speed — up to 8 miles per hour moving to the north.

Hurricane Orlene to weaken after being a Category 4

Doing the math on this is easy. Between 7 a.m. Saturday and 4 a.m. Sunday CDT, this storm doubled in strength. It went from 65 miles per hour Saturday morning to 130 miles per hour Sunday in less than 24 hours.

A turn to the right is expected today with a north-northeast track taking it to Mexico. Orlene is expected to make landfall Monday night.

Central Texas is seeing some effects of the hurricane, with an increase in clouds expected during the day. Unfortunately, there won’t be any rain.