We are starting off with a very nice weekend, with sunny skies and warm temperatures on Saturday. Light morning winds will give way to some afternoon breezes and we should reach 70 degrees at the airport. High clouds will start to move in throughout Saturday night and thicken up Sunday ahead of the next cold front, kicking up some strong Sunday afternoon winds and bringing a chance of late day rain showers. The cold front moves in Sunday night dropping snow levels back to the valley floor by sunrise Monday morning, and a light dusting of snow could have moderate impacts on the commute, but the mountains are likely to see significant snow. An additional storm mid-week will keep temperatures cool throughout.
So how strong a wind at sea level would equal the force of a 100 mph wind at our elevation?
The formula for force of a wind is: Force (lbs/square foot) = (wind speed)2 X (.0027). The .0027 is a fudge factor that works at sea level. The .0027 factor has to be reduced to 15% less at our altitude (.002295). Plugged in, that makes a 100 mph wind here equal to a 92 mph wind at sea level. This can work for any elevation, but you need to adjust the .0027 fudge factor by the percentage of atmosphere you have left. At 10,000’ elevation you have 30% less air, which when plugged back into the equation makes the force of a 100 mph wind equivalent to 83 mph at sea level.