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Old Grandfather, New Weather Stations

Article Published: Sep. 8, 2011 | Modified: Sep. 8, 2011

Grandfather Mountain, known for its winds and extreme weather, has been reporting weather data from the top of the mountain since August 1955.

During the past four years, Grandfather, in partnership with Appalachian State University, has upgraded technology and added two automatic weather stations on its Mile High Swinging Bridge.

In its monthly summaries, Grandfather Mountain will now begin reporting the data collected by the automatic weather station located on the Swinging Bridge.

The average high temperature for August was 68.2 degrees and the average low temperature was 57.1 degrees. These numbers read just a bit higher than the State Climate Office data from Mt. Mitchell State Park The average high temperature at Mt. Mitchell was 66.2 degrees and the average low temperature was 54.1 degrees.

Grandfather Mountain measures precipitation at multiple locations on the mountain. The equipment used to collect the data previously reported in the monthly summaries collected 2.17 inches of rain in August.

This recording was 3.61 inches (62 percent) below the 56-year average rainfall total for the month of 5.78 inches.

Rain for the year-to-date totals 37 inches, which is 6.41 inches (15 percent) below the 56-year norm of 43.41 inches.

An automatic weighing precipitation gauge on the corner of the Top Shop parking lot recorded 2.31 inches of rain this month and a manual gauge at the mountain’s entrance gate recorded 2.66 inches.

Wind gusts more than 60 mph were recorded five times.

The highest three-second gust during the month was 79.1 mph recorded Aug. 10.

For more information on Grandfather Mountain’s weather data or to access current conditions, visit

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