How to Measure the Windspeed With no Gadgets

Last time we hit the trail we reviewed the Nallo 2 tent. During one of the evenings the wind was blowing like a beast and we estimated the wind speed to be about 30MPH. Perhaps we needed one of these bad boys to be accurate…

Image

The Vaavud connects to your mobile phone and when used in-conjunction with an app (available on iOS or Android) it can measure wind speed. It’s on sale now for about £30 and seems very useful if you are the type of person that wants to go camping and measure wind speed accurately. If you’d rather save £30 and put it towards something actually useful like a pair of merino wool pants, several bags of jelly babies, or the entire collection of  Rocky movies, use the following scale to estimate wind speed instead:

Beaufort scale

Specifications and equivalent speeds
Beaufort wind scale Mean Wind Speed Limits of wind speed Wind descriptive terms Probable wave height in metres* Probable maximum wave height in metres* Seastate Sea descriptive terms
Knots ms-1 Knots ms-1
0 0 0 <1 <1 Calm (smoke rises vertically) 0 Calm (glassy)
1 2 1 1–3 1-2 Light air (smoke moves slightly with the breeze) 0.1 0.1 1 Calm (rippled)
2 5 3 4–6 2-3 Light breeze (you can feel it on your face) 0.2 0.3 2 Smooth (wavelets)
3 9 5 7–10 4-5 Gentle breeze (small branches sway) 0.6 1.0 3 Slight
4 13 7 11–16 6-8 Moderate breeze (loose dust/sand will move on the ground) 1.0 1.5 3–4 Slight–Moderate
5 19 10 17–21 9-11 Fresh breeze (small trees sway) 2.0 2.5 4 Moderate
6 24 12 22–27 11-14 Strong breeze (trees begin to bend) 3.0 4.0 5 Rough
7 30 15 28–33 14-17 Near gale (large trees bend) 4.0 5.5 5–6 Rough–Very rough
8 37 19 34–40 17-21 Gale (twigs on trees will break off) 5.5 7.5 6–7 Very rough–High
9 44 23 41–47 21-24 Severe gale (branches will break off) 7.0 10.0 7 High
10 52 27 48–55 25-28 Storm (trees uprooted) 9.0 12.5 8 Very High
11 60 31 56–63 29-32 Violent storm (widespread damage) 11.5 16.0 8 Very High
12 64+ 33+ Hurricane (structural damage)
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