This post will probably be updated every hour or so, so keep checking back, OK? I'll highlight the time in bold to help orient you a little.
There's a tiny bit of good news about Ike (at least as of 7 am) ... his pressure has increased again. It's now at 956 millibars, up from 953. Although the NHC is still holding steady with his winds (105 mph), at this time it doesn't appear as tho he will be strengthening further.
It's almost a certainty that he will hit Galveston almost head on, the eye traveling up I-45 through Houston and then rapidly continuing north. He is still approximately 200 miles southeast of Galveston, but the waves down there are already crashing over the sea wall (which is about 16' high).
Now, if those projections hold true, the eye will pass 20+ miles east of my house. That's a good thing.
Current projected maximum sustained wind speeds at my house (zip code 77099 ... southwest side of Houston, very near the intersection of Beltway 8 and Highway 59) still show 75mph on this site. Even though the NHC's latest revised advisory came out over half an hour ago, their figures have still not been updated.
[I checked just a few minutes ago. Let me check it again, hitting the 'refresh' button, of course. ... ... Nope. Still showing the 4am figures.]
That's kind of a neat site. If you hover over any zip code for a fraction of a second, it will give you more info. Looks like they're updating every three hours.
Have sheets and clothes in the dryer. Did the dishes. Made some more ice cubes. Now, I have to get out in the backyard and tackle the grass. More later ... ...
10 am ... Latest info ... pressure has dropped again -- just a couple of millibars ... windspeed about the same (105 mph).
It looks like there's going to be just a humongous storm surge all along the upper Texas coast and throughout Galveston Bay. Altho the eye of the storm is not supposed to cross the coastline until 1 or 2 am tomorrow morning, the force of Ike's winds will be felt for 100 miles out from the center. He's huge!! I think I heard someone say that he covered 80% of the Gulf of Mexico at one point.
I know this is probably going to sound really silly to some of you, but it still is not certain where, exactly, he is going to make landfall. A definite turn to the north needs to begin pretty quickly if my house is going to be on the western side of this storm.
The best projections continue to be a direct hit on Galveston with the storm proceeding to the northwest, but as I said, he's still moving west.
That's it for now. I'll probably do another post at 1pm, after the next official update. Think I'll start #5 with that one. So, bye for now!