Though it’s mid-May, warmer, milder weather has yet to make its way up to the 6,288-foot peak of New Hampshire’s Mount Washington, as a pair of weather observers can attest.
Mike Dorfman and Tom Padham braved the 109-mph gusts at the top of a tower at the Mount Washington Observatory to record the hourly weather conditions. Dorfman wrote about the experience in a blog post and posted a video to go along with it.
This is how Dorfman described the experience:
“The Sherman Adams building has 3 foot thick concrete walls and 3 layers of bullet-resistant glass windows. Even with this protection, the constant, dull roar of the wind is ever-present in the Observatory’s Weather Room. Heading up to the tower to deice every hour is an adventure; the enclosed parapet-like tower roars like the sound of a jet engine as a plane is taking off, and exiting the top door of the parapet is like opening up the window of that ascending jet.”
In the video posted Monday, the weather observer fights to stay upright as the winds buffet him atop the snowy mountain. At one point, he launches himself into the howling wind and is briefly airborne before tumbling to the ground and sliding across the icy ground.
The powerful winds are something to behold, but they’re nothing compared with the record 231-mph winds recorded on the mountain in 1934.
Known for its extreme weather, the observatory says “winter is Mount Washington’s most alluring season,” when “the peak’s extreme conditions rival those of Mount Everest and the Polar regions.”