The 10 windiest cities in the US

Windy cities
CC BY 2.0 Mitya Ku/flickr

Whether you're interested in a hairspray forecast or how wind energy might play out, here are America's most tempestuous towns.

Despite the video below taken at New Hampshire’s Mount Washington Observatory – which reveals not only what 109 mph winds look like, but how weather observers get their kicks – the Granite State does not play home to any of the larger windiest cities in the nation. (Even though Mount Washington did hold the world record until 1996 for the fastest wind gust ever recorded on the surface of the Earth – 231 miles per hour on April 12, 1934!)

And curiously enough, not even the Windy City (aka Chicago) is among the country’s most blustery, according to a ranking compiled by The Weather Channel. Using average annual wind speed data from NOAA's National Climatic Data Center, they listed the cities (population 100,000+) that are persistently the windiest year in and year out (rather than those with sustained wind speed or gust records).

Here’s where the skirts and neckties fly and hairspray rules the roost:

10. Buffalo, New York
Average wind speed: 11.8 mph
Average windiest month: January
Record wind gust: 82 mph, February 16, 1967

9. Abilene, Texas
Average wind speed: 11.9 mph
Average windiest month: April
Record wind gust: 78 mph, June 15, 1983

8. Corpus Christi, Texas
Average wind speed: 12 mph
Average windiest month: April
Record wind gust: 161 mph on August 3, 1970

7 (tie). Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Average wind speed: 12.2 mph
Average windiest month: March
Record wind gust: 107 mph, June 15, 1955

7 (tie). Fargo, North Dakota
Average wind speed: 12.2 mph
Average windiest month: April
Record wind gust: 115 mph on June 9, 1959

7 (tie). Wichita, Kansas
Average wind speed: 12.2 mph
Average windiest month: April
Record wind gust: 101 mph, July 11, 1993

4. Boston, Massachusetts
Average wind speed: 12.3 mph
Average windiest month: March
Record wind gust: 81 mph

3. Lubbock, Texas
Average wind speed: 12.4 mph
Average windiest month: April
Record measured peak gust: 90 mph, May 9, 1952

2. Rochester, Minnesota
Average wind speed: 12.6 mph
Average windiest months: January and April
Record wind gust: 74 mph, August 11, 2007

1: Amarillo, Texas
Average wind speed: 13.6 mph
Average windiest month: April
Record wind gust: 84 mph, May 15, 1949

As for the windiest place on the planet? The Guardian lists it as Wellington, New Zealand, where the average wind speed is a whopping 16.6 mph. Watch below, hold onto your hats.

Tags: United States | Weather | Wind Power

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