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Old April 16th 07, 06:33 PM posted to rec.boats,rec.boats.cruising
Joe Joe is offline
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Default Video footage - USCG assists capsized catamaran in Gulf of Mexico

On Apr 16, 11:55 am, thunder wrote:
On Mon, 16 Apr 2007 06:46:08 -0700, Joe wrote:
I'm just north of Galveston, sail the Gulf of Mexico mostly. Williwaw is
a term I've heard from an engineer from Michigan who wroked for me on
the supply boats, not a term used here much. I figured it might be a
term someone from the NE would understand. Here in the gulf we call them
fronts, microburst's and t storms.


Different phenomenon. A true williwaw is associated with mountains.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Katabatic_wind


Got ya, thanks.

Also found this
Location: Strait of Magellan and Aleutian Islands

Williwaw is the name for a sudden violent, cold, katabatic gust of
wind descending from a mountainous coast of high latitudes to the sea
and are most common n the Strait of Magellan or the Aleutian Islands.

The term williwaw is of Native American origin which refers to a
strong erratic gust of wind and the effects of a williwaw gust are a
constant danger for any vessel trying to sail around Cape Horn:

Then there are those famous katabatic winds or "williwaws," which can
wreak havoc in short order. If you feel sudden rises in temperature -
beware. This is an air parcel coming down from the mountains and is in
compression. In its most violent manifestation ( a williwaw) it can
dump over high land spilling out onto the water at well over 120 knots
whipping up the water into a white frenzy.

They are also known as the Alskan winds. However, similar gusts with
many local names do occur at many high latitude coasts from Siberia to
Patagonia.

Joe