The windward slopes of the Sierra Madre Oriental receive the greater part of the rainfall, and the winds, deprived of their moisture, pass over the northern plateau without further precipitation.
Where the line of elevated land runs east and west, as in Asia, the desert belt tends to be displaced into higher latitudes, and where the line runs north and south, as in Africa, America and Australia, the desert zone is cut through on the windward side of the elevation and the arid conditions intensified on the lee side.
On the 17th of June 1896 the dramatic meeting of Jackson and Nansen took place, and in the same year the "Windward" revisited "Elmwood" and brought Nansen home, the work of the Jackson-Harmsworth expedition being continued for another year.
A first meridian, separating a leeward from a windward region, passed through Ras Kumhari (Comorin) and was thus nearly identical with the first meridian of the Indian astronomers which passed through the sacred city of Ujjain (Ozere of Ptolemy) or the meridian of Azin of the Arabs.
At first the English were to windward and they bore down with Rear-Admiral John Lawson in command of the van.