The grammar introduced below lets us say things like, “A is not as good as B”. The noun ほど can directly follow other nouns and verbs. You can think of ほど as the opposite of より. Both let us say the same thing if we reverse the logic.

Today is warmer than yesterday.
Today is not as cold as yesterday.
There is nothing as important as family.
Today I have a ton of things to do [as much as a mountain].

It often helps to think of ほど as meaning “to the extent”.

Himeji Castle is so beautiful you will be surprised.

A more literally translation: “To the extent that you will be surprised, Himeji Castle is beautiful”.

In fact, ぐらい and ほど can often be used interchangeably. Grammatically they require the same treatment, but in terms of nuance ほど is more emphatic.

I’ve put on about 10kg this year.
I’ve put on as much as 10kg this year.
He has so much money that he could even buy a Ferrari without deliberation.
It’s a situation that could even mean the bankruptcy of the company.
There were more people than you can count.
It hurt so much I thought I was going to die.
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