Published May 31, 2022

Enough with the Wind

Written by
Kim Fundingsland
| The Dakotan
[Photo: Kim Fundingsland/The Dakotan]
[Photo: Kim Fundingsland/The Dakotan]

MINOT — Persistent wind seems to be the norm throughout the region, almost to the point of getting used to it. Almost.

Howling winds reached gusts of more than 50 miles per hour in the Minot region Tuesday morning. A peak gust of 54 miles per hour was recorded at the Minot International Airport prior to 8 a.m., with winds gusting in the mid to upper 40s for several hours to follow.

Some say it is what is to be expected in North Dakota. Others disagree, saying so many days of windy weather is beyond normal.

[Video: Kim Fundingsland/The Dakotan]

Okay. What does the National Weather say when asked if the state has been experiencing more wind than usual, for a long period of time?

“We don’t keep wind records,” said Matt Johnson, Bismarck NWS. “But I wouldn’t doubt it if we were.”

To many it sure seems so. This week won’t do much to change any minds either. Winds are forecast to gust up to 31 mph Wednesday and closer to 40 mph Thursday. The explanation is “wrap around winds due to a bunch of low-pressure systems the last few weeks.”

Sounds reasonable, but when will the wind subside so that garbage containers stay put and lakes settle down enough to permit a nice visit?

“Right now, the models have the low pressure moving into Canada and slowly out of the area,” said Johnson Tuesday afternoon. “The northwest flow patterns say it will be kind of breezy through the weekend, a pattern that isn’t really conducive to winds calming down.”

The wind will let up somewhat though, at least that’s the analysis of the NWS. Not exactly calm, but not 50 mph either. Friday and Saturday wind gusts are expected to be about 20 mph, which will seem like a big relief compared to Tuesday’s relentless wind.

Sunday and Monday look for peak wind gusts back in the mid-20s. Beyond that, take it a few days at a time. Forecasting wind isn’t nearly as easy as forecasting temperatures or moisture systems.

“It’s a little difficult with the quirkiness of long-range models, for wind especially,” said Johnson.

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