Cold And Windy Ahead
2015-01-04 21:23:25.000 – Ryan Knapp, Weather Observer/Meteorologist
It’s about to get windy and cold, not just for the summits but for the whole of New Hampshire. The summits and low lands of NH will see temperatures falling tonight, during the day Monday and right into Monday night. By the time things bottom out, lowlands of northern NH will be seeing ambient air temperatures ranging between 10 below and 20 below. In southern NH the plunge will bottom out in the single digits above, even along the coast. At the same time, winds will be on the increase with sustained winds some 10 to 20 mph and gusts around the state as high as 40 mph. That means by Monday night, wind chills will feel like they are between 20 below and 30 below in the north and between 0 and 10 below for the south. So remember to bundle up and pack some extra layers especially if waiting outdoors for a bus, train, etc on Tuesday morning.
But, if you think that all sounds cold, let’s bring the focus up to the higher summits of NH. Sunday night through Tuesday morning, we are expecting sustained winds of 80 to 100+mph with gusts possibly reaching upwards of 140 mph by Monday afternoon and evening. This number could potentially go higher as each model run continues to show a steeper and steeper pressure gradient setting up. And just like the lowlands of NH, summits will see their temperatures freefalling to a low of 20 below to 30 below by Monday night/Tuesday morning. So when you factor these together, that means wind chills will make it feel like it is 70 below to 80 below – not actual temperatures, just what it will feel like on exposed skin. But if you do have skin exposed and are feeling these wind chills, it also means frostbite can set in in less than 5 minutes. So factoring winds, temperatures, and wind chills, the next 36 hours will be an extremely risky time to be above tree line. With that being said, with conditions that are expected, MWO summit staff will not be able to assist in search and rescues. Therefore, if help is needed it will need to come from below and it will likely be slow going or postponed until conditions are safer for rescue parties to find you. So please take extreme precautions tomorrow or consider postponing your trip by a day; the mountain will always be here on another day.
Ryan Knapp, Weather Observer/Meteorologist