Great Falls: How Windy?

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Another very windy day in Great Falls! It sure seems like this has been the windiest, non-snowiest, warmest December I’ve ever had in Great Falls. So how windy is Great Falls overall?

The Tribune says we are the 4th-windiest city in the nation.

FunTrivia – citing NOAA – says that Great Falls ranks at #7. This site also reports that Great Falls is #7.

City-Data reports that Great Falls is #12, although there’s no cite.

WindEnergy ranks Great Falls at #13.

And no formal ranking, but some wind info from the experts at NOAA:

Recorded wind data started in 1942 at Great Falls. The wind direction has a profound impact on temperatures and precipitation in the area, especially during the winter months. While the prevailing winds at Great Falls are from the southwest to west-southwest, occasional north to northeasterly winds during the late winter and early spring contribute to significant upslope precipitation events. The greatest variability in wind direction in the Great Falls area results from thunderstorm outflow winds, primarily during spring and summer afternoons.

The average wind speed recorded at Great Falls between 1942 and 2002 is 12.5 miles per hour (mph). Winds averaged on a monthly basis are at a maximum (15.4 mph) during December and are lowest (9.9 mph) in July. The highest daily average wind speed recorded at Great Falls was 44.0 mph on January 29, 1974.

Daily peak wind gusts recorded between 1942-2002 average out to 28.8 mph. Monthly averaged peak wind gusts top out at 31.6 mph in December and are at a minimum of 27.6 mph in August. The peak wind gust recorded at the Great Falls International Airport was 92 mph on June 27, 1970.


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