With climbers enjoying excellent weather while in the Western Cwm, meteorologists are seeing a strange phenomenon – a missing jet stream.
These high winds aloft are the key for summiting Everest in particular. When the jet is off the summit, the winds drop below 30 mph, the maximum most guides will let their clients climb in. When on top of the peak, which is almost all year long, the summit is too dangerous. Climbers have been known to be blown off mountain tops.
This quiet jet could foretell good luck for the crowded mountain. In 2018 there were 11 consecutive days of low winds that allowed crowds to spread out. Of course, the nightmare scenario occurred in 2019 when there were only three suitable days of low winds thus hundreds of climbers were squeezed into those few days creating massive lines high on the peak.
I spoke with meteorologist Chris Tomer about the Jet Stream and other elements of mountain weather and forecasting for Everest climbers. Chris forecasts the weather for KDVR FOX-31 and KWGN Channel 2 in Denver. He also provides weather forecasts for climbers throughout the world.
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