Wind gusts to 200 mph in mountains

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Wind gusts to 200 mph in mountains

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Workers at Grandfather Mountain described "an unreal" scene early Wednesday when record wind gusts of at least 200 mph battered the North Carolina tourist attraction in the northwest mountains.

"Our workers who were inside the Visitor Center said it was like a tornado -- a whirlwind -- inside the building after the windows broke," said Crae Morton, president of Grandfather Mountain and grandson of Hugh Morton, who developed the tourist site.

Morton said staff members don't know exactly how strong the northwest winds really blew late Tuesday night and early Wednesday.

The National Weather Service-approved anenometer measures only up to 200 mph. Morton said gusts reached that level several times. He said the staff assumes winds exceeded that mark.

It broke the Grandfather Mountain wind record of 195.5 mph, set April 18, 1997. Those winds are believed to be the strongest ever measured in the Carolinas.

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We see 200 mph winds occassionally in the US. Lately their seems to be more then usual.

The temperatures this winter have been very strange. For the last 4-5 weeks the temps go from 20' and 30's one day or two and then back up to the 40's and 50's the rest of the week. Windy too
By YCON: posted on 1-2-2006

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