Monday, January 23, 2006


Sofa Ridge
Originally uploaded by cgoble72.
Everyone knows that Waterton can get rather windy. Kayakers tend to think the Gap is the windiest place around, climbers usually think Drywood gets this honour. While definitive answers don't exist one way or another, all I know is last night was windy!

In Waterton, I usually gage the wind by how noisy the Park office flag is. If you can hear it down the block, you know you are in a windstorm. Another popular method for gauging the wind is by counting the number of shingles that get blown off the Waterton Lodge. Last night I only found one, and I think that was from some time ago.

Perhaps due to the sadism engendered through ranching, locals love to have their own wind gauges to measure storms. Last night things were clocked at 122km/h. This makes it a weak category one hurricane. (However, the lake surge was probably no more than 2 feet)

The highest record I have heard about in the area is 175km/h. I guess that means we still have a ways to go. Who knows how strong the wind was back in the 1920's when the unfinished Prince of Whales Hotel was pushed off it's foundation by a wind storm. Locals often gauge the wind speed by whether or not spray from the lake makes it up the 150ft hill to hit the hotel windows.


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