Volunteer Comments

2013-02-27 00:21:51.000 – Bill Ofsiany,  Summit Volunteer

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Meteorology, like most of the sciences deals with numbers; things that can be made into graphs. Wind speed in miles per hour or meters per second, millibars, visibility in miles, temperature in degrees, dew points and relative humidity, rainfall and snowfall in inches or feet, are all objective. These are the things that can be measured. That is the realm of science. But there is something else up here, that only those who have been here can experience; the subjective parts of weather. When the wind speed gets up in the 70 mile per hour range or higher, you feel the wind not as a gas that is moving very fast, the wind takes on a fluid quality. You are trying to stand in swift moving liquid that is attempting to push you downstream. It is like trying cross a fast flowing river with water that comes up to your waist or chest. The higher the wind speed, the stronger the force trying to wash you away. Wind is not a liquid though, and while that feeling can be measured in pounds of pressure per square inch, it is more a feeling, and that is what subjectively is.

This week we got to experience that feeling when the wind reached a peak gust of 102 miles per hour. We also had a bluebird day, with light wind and clear sky and undercast; like the snow and ice capped high peaks were the only parts of the world. These are all feelings, subjective things. These are the things that attract people here, and why we keep coming back.

 

Bill Ofsiany,  Summit Volunteer

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