It seems that Darwin has been spared the worst. After reaching absolutely amazing power as one of the most powerful storms ever recorded, Monica took a job to the south and made landfall along a sparesely populated area of the Northern Territory. Monica came ashore with a solid double eyewall, but was unfortunately out of range of any weather radars. Below is the visible satellite shot from landfall and the current infrared image.
Here is the latest from the Bureau of Meteorology:
Details of SEVERE TROPICAL CYCLONE Monica at 10 pm CST [8:30 pm WST]:
. Centre located near...... 12.0 degrees South 133.7 degrees East
. Location accuracy........ within 30 kilometres
. Recent movement.......... towards the west southwest at 14 km/h
. Wind gusts near centre... 260 kilometres per hour
. Intensity................ CATEGORY 4
. Central pressure......... 935 hectoPascals
REPEATING: A CYCLONE WARNING is now current between MILINGIMBI and PORT KEATS, including DARWIN, TIWI ISLANDS, COBOURG PENINSULA and JABIRU. A CYCLONE WATCH extends southwest to KALUMBURU in Western Australia.
This turn to the south was not at all expected in the models, but did not come as a complete surprise. In fact, I did mention on the messageboard that my gut was thinking it would happen. This just proves that there is no substitute for a human forecaster.