Well, it’s all but official to most people now.
Hurricane IKE will not be turning north and coming ashore on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
That landfall honor will fall, unfortunately, to the Texas Gulf Coast, in the Galveston-Houston area, where Kathryn, of ThisCouldGetUglier, lives.
Mandatory evacuation orders have been issued by Texas area authorities south of Houston today for persons living near the coast and in low-lying areas south of Houston, and hopefully, the thousands of residents there, living in harm’s way, are heeding the call to evacuate from there. As of yet, Houston city residents have not been requested to evacuate.
Several swimmers splash around in the high waves from Hurricane Ike, on the beach in Long beach, Mississippi.
Hurricane IKE is currently classified as a Category 2 hurricane, with hurricane winds OF 100 MILES PER HOUR, ranging out 110 miles from the eye, and tropical storm strength winds ranging out 200+ miles from the eye. It is a monster storm, some 450-500 miles across, and is predicted to make landfall between Galveston and Houston Friday evening or Saturday morning.
Cars traveling on Hwy 90 this evening on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, and get a blasting from wind-blown sand caused by strong winds of Hurricane Ike.
Here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, we are approximately 275-300 miles north of the eye, currently under a Tropical Storm Warning, and we are presently experiencing sustained winds in the 30-40 mile per hour range, with gusts up into the 50s. There is some flooding in low-lying coastal areas and the storm surge is predicted to continue to rise during the night, and coincides with a morning high tide.
Hurricane Ike strong sustained winds move high waves ashore in Pass Christian Thursday evening along Hwy 90.
KATHRYN, of THIS COULD GET UGLIER.
When she was deciding on a name for her blog, I don’t know if Kathryn really suspected how appropriate the name would become, when a massive hurricane bore down on her home on Sept. 11, 2008. There isn’t a shadow of a doubt that living where she is living in Houston, is going to get uglier, real quick!
The newly rebuilt Pass Christian Yacht Club building towers above the waves Thursday afternoon generated by Hurricane Ike.
In an email I received from her this morning, Kathryn said that she and her family plan to ride out IKE and will hunker down in their home, and have prepared accordingly, by filling the two bath tubs up with water, laying in an extra supply of batteries, bottled water, a cooler full of food, two radios, and ice.
Shaggy’s Cafe on the Beach in Pass Christian, has water to the ground floor, and the nearby piers are also almost underwater Thursday afternoon, caused by IKE.
That said, with the huge size that IKE is, I worry and fret for Kathryn and her family’s safety, as Kathryn, Quin, , Maggie, Mandy, Dawn, Melissa, Melissa, Carissa, Cathy, Christine, Witchypoo, Jesse, Warriorwitch, Shania, Christina, Kim, Sarah, Pam, Nutmeg, and so many others expressed that they fretted for my safety and that of my fellow Mississippi Gulf Coast residents as Hurricane GUSTAV approached us two weeks ago.
That fret is even more pronounced if IKE should strengthen to a high Category 3 or 4 prior to landfall. At this point, weather forecasters don’t know if it will increase in intensity.
Strong waves generated by winds from Hurricane Ike pound ashore along Beach Boulevard in Bay St. Louis Thursday evening.
This morning, the first outer band winds were felt here in Long beach, and we had several quick, hard showers, as an outer rain band or two came by.
The sustained winds from the outer bands of IKE continued to strengthen during today, and parts of Hwy 90 along the beach in Pass Christian, and Beach Boulevard in Bay St. Louis, started to flood.
Beach Boulevard in Bay St. Louis.
This evening, I took a little ride over to 90 and over to Bay St. Louis to see what kind of wave action and wind were coming ashore, as IKE passed some 275-300 miles to our south.
I found that Hwy 90 in Long Beach and Pass Christian along the beach have become virtual sand blasting tunnels, as the strong sustained winds from offshore flow in to the beach, picking up the sand and blasting it towards the west.
Large waves pound the St. Stanislaus School pier on Beach Boulevard in Bay St. Louis, with the CSX rail bridge and the new, $266.8 million, high-rise Bay Bridge in the background.
Waves in Long beach and Pass Christian were increasing in size, and crashing heavily against the shore and piers located there.
Huge piles of shore debris from Hurricane GUSTAV were evident in many areas along the beach and Hwy 90, having been recently pushed into piles for removal. Hopefully, IKE won’t add too much debris to what GUSTAV washed ashore.
Over in Bay St. Louis, the waves hitting the Beach Boulevard are growing steadily, and this evening are estimated to be as high as 5′-6′. I stopped at the St. Stanislaus School Campus in the Bay, and walked out on their newly rebuilt pier to take some pics of the massive waves coming ashore.
The 20-30 of us who were out there, were told to evacuate from the pier, as school officials felt that with the heavy wave action coming in, the pier might not be safe.
The newly rebuilt St. Stanislaus School pier gets pounded by heavy waves Thursday evening, caused by strong winds from Hurricane Ike.
During the hour or so that I was along the beach over in The Bay, the waves coming in became noticeably deeper, from when I first starting watching them, and left water and spray cascading high into the air as the waves thundered into the beach and the piers.
Those folks on the Texas coast between Galveston and Houston, right now have sustained winds of 100 miles per hour and huge amounts of storm surge heading their way. Not a good scenario!
Please join me in extending our thoughts and prayers to them as they face this deadly threat called Hurricane IKE.
I will try to maintain contact with Kathryn during and after the hurricane, to learn what has happened there with her family.
Kathryn and family, and all of your fellow Texas Gulf Coast residents,
PLEASE STAY SAFE!
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