As the weekend storm moved out of Northern California on Monday, it left with it quite a mark. The Tahoe mountains had received a bulky foot of snow over the storm’s cycle, but it was the wind that would be widely discussed by weather enthusiasts in the area.
At 4:15 pm atop Ward Peak in Alpine Meadows, wind sensors reported winds of 191 mph, just below the California record. The record of 199 mph was recorded at that exact location on February 20, 2017.
The Summit (Ward Mt) station atop Alpine Meadows Ski Resort just reported a 191 mph wind gust at 4:15 PM which if verified would be one of the highest wind speeds ever recorded in California. @NWSReno @TahoeWeather #CAwx https://t.co/I4JqF7yIN5 pic.twitter.com/yVa3KYtm6J— US StormWatch (@GreatWinter2017) January 5, 2021
While the snow was fresh, the wind gusts created a problem for skiers and snowboarders on the mountain that day. Not only was the wind uncomfortable, it also forced the resort to close the Summit lift around 10 am. Other lifts would close throughout the afternoon as the wind picked up.
Winter storm was ripping today at Alpine Meadows ❄️ ⛷ pic.twitter.com/LYNJ7PsJfc— Ricardo Cortes (@RicardoDCortes) January 4, 2021
Although the officials record sits at 199 mph, that number is actually disputed. On February 9, 2020, a sensor atop Kirkwood recorded winds of 209 mph, but that number was questioned by the National Weather Service, claiming a faulty sensor. According to the NWS, the records remains at 199 mph.
Northern California’s Outdoor Digital Newsmagazine