Department of Energy Argonne National Laboratory Office of Science NEWTON's Homepage NEWTON's Homepage
NEWTON, Ask A Scientist!
NEWTON Home Page NEWTON Teachers Visit Our Archives Ask A Question How To Ask A Question Question of the Week Our Expert Scientists Volunteer at NEWTON! Frequently Asked Questions Referencing NEWTON About NEWTON About Ask A Scientist Education At Argonne Mt. Washington Winds
Name: Bruce
Status: N/A
Age: N/A
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: N/A 

Why are the winds so intense atop Mt. Washington at the White Mountains in Vermont?


The high winds on Mt. Washington are the result of it's high altitude, 6288 feet, the highest in the northeastern USA (although high winds are common on many mountain tops), local topography, and storm system tracks.

Mt. Washington is part of the Presidential Range of mountains (including Mt. Adams, Mt. Washington, and Mt. Eisenhower in the northern part of the eastern edge of the White Mountains) that extend from north to south, presenting a barrier to the normal westerly winds. Air is forced over the mountains, thereby increasing the wind speed over that which occurs in the valleys below.

Mt. Washington is also near or within several common storm tracks (with accompanying higher wind speeds), including low pressure systems moving east from the Great Lakes and northeasters that drive northward along the eastern seaboard.

David R. Cook
Climate Research Section
Environmental Science Division
Argonne National Laboratory

Click here to return to the Weather Archives

NEWTON is an electronic community for Science, Math, and Computer Science K-12 Educators, sponsored and operated by Argonne National Laboratory's Educational Programs, Andrew Skipor, Ph.D., Head of Educational Programs.

For assistance with NEWTON contact a System Operator (, or at Argonne's Educational Programs

Educational Programs
Building 360
9700 S. Cass Ave.
Argonne, Illinois
60439-4845, USA
Update: June 2012
Weclome To Newton

Argonne National Laboratory