Mt. Rainier Clocks Category 3 Hurricane Wind Gust at Camp Muir
Camp Muir is located at about the 10,100 ft. level of Mt. Rainier and for 14 consecutive hours on Sunday a wind gauge registered gusts topping 100 mph with a jaw-dropping reading of 143 mph recorded in the early afternoon.
It was part of 14 consecutive hours of the gauge recording a gust of 100 mph or more. The 143-mph gust came amid a sustained wind report of 119 mph which would put it squarely on par with a Category 3 hurricane. Accessed through the Paradise Entrance to Mt. Rainier, Camp Muir is named for naturalist John Muir and is the most used base camp for those attempting to climb to the mountain's summit. Camp Muir is between the Nisqually and Paradise Glaciers.
Gusts were reported up to 94 mph at Chinook Pass, and around 70 mph in lower levels in the mountains, including Crystal Mountain and Sunrise camp on Mt. Rainier; both around 6,800 feet. Snoqualmie Pass amid an early Spring heavy snowstorm hit a gust of 64 mph.
Click here to see the hour-by-hour wind statistics breakdown from the Tri-Cities Airport in Pasco regarding Sunday afternoon's chaos.
At 2:53 p.m. the wind gauge at the PSC recorded a 55 mph gust with sustained winds to 35 mph. Then, at 5:53 p.m. with sustained winds to 39 mph a gust of 56 mph was recorded. Finally, at 6:53 p.m. the biggest of the day, sustained winds to 41 mph and gust that topped out at 61 mph. I believe it was during this time frame a huge gust knocked down a tree in my backyard that had stood for 40+ years. You can read about that here.