At 700 PM CDT (0000 UTC), the center of Tropical Storm Nate was located by NOAA and Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter planes near latitude 21.4 North, longitude 85.9 West. Nate is moving toward the north-northwest near 22 mph (35 km/h), and this motion is expected to continue through Saturday, with a turn toward the north and northeast expected Saturday night and Sunday. On the forecast track, the center of Nate will move near the northeastern coast of the Yucatan peninsula this evening. Nate will then move into the southern Gulf of Mexico tonight, approach the northern Gulf coast Saturday, and then make landfall over the northern Gulf coast Saturday night or Sunday.
Reports from the reconnaissance planes indicate that maximum sustained winds have increased to near 65 mph (100 km/h) with higher gusts. Additional strengthening is forecast during the next 36 hours, and Nate is expected to become a hurricane by the time it reaches the northern Gulf of Mexico.
Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 125 miles (205 km) mainly to the east of the center.
SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT:
A Hurricane Warning is in effect for... * Grand Isle Louisiana to the Alabama/Florida border * Metropolitan New Orleans and Lake Pontchartrain
A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for... * Morgan City Louisiana to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line Florida * Northern and western shores of Lake Pontchartrain
A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for... * Punta Herrero to Rio Lagartos Mexico * Pinar del Rio Cuba * Lake Maurepas * West of Grand Isle to Morgan City Louisiana * East of the Alabama/Florida border to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line.
A Hurricane Watch is in effect for... * Punta Herrero to Rio Lagartos Mexico * Lake Maurepas * East of the Alabama/Florida border to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line * West of Grand Isle to Morgan City Louisiana
A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for... * East of the the Okaloosa/Walton County Line to Indian Pass Florida
A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for... * East of the Okaloosa/Walton County Line to Indian Pass Florida * West of Morgan City to Intracoastal City Louisiana * Isle of Youth Cuba