Snow tornado, more Snow willy Willy.

snowgum

A Local
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May 4, 1999
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cant say I have ever seen this phenomenon in Australia, though it sounds like something that could happen regularly.

Good footage. Fascinating!

I’ve see them, several of them on one day at Mt Hutt in Aug 2004. We were experiencing near-gale force conditions in the morning and early afternoon. The chairs were both closed. The gusts were stopping the TBars. I’m guessing NW gusts were hitting 100 km/h and the snownados were forming high on the front slope and then gradually advancing down to the day shelter. It certainly made for some exciting waits halfway up the TBar line! :oops:

As a BTW: In the end, the ensuing Blizzard shut (or shutt) the resort and road at 4pm, with all visitors holding up in the day shelter. In the end, we were allowed down at 10pm, with chains being fitted and removed by chain teams - incredible to watch! We had snow in Methven that morning and light flakes accumulating on the aircraft windows as we departed Christchurch. (Our visit winter NZ visit too!)

Given Hutt’s notoriety for wild weather, I’d be surprised if this doesn’t happen a few times per winter.
Maybe the Canterbury regulars lurking here know more about this phenomena?
 

skifree

A disciple of the blessed avi giraffe
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Jul 13, 1998
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I have actually seen this on the BHP, standard thermal picking up snow rather than dust.

Also a common occurrence on a smaller different scale on windy days at Eyre / Perisher. Those these rarely last more than 90 seconds or so.

Note, no where near tornado scale.
 
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Legs Akimbo

Grumblebum
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Mar 3, 1999
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3201696521_84cb3da891.jpg
 

LMB

Old but definitely not Crusty!
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May 6, 2010
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I have actually seen this on the BHP, standard thermal picking up snow rather than dust.

Also a common occurrence on a smaller different scale on windy days at Eyre / Perisher. Those these rarely last more than 90 seconds or so.

Note, no where near tornado scale.
Ive seen quite a few of the smaller Willy-willys, same same but much smaller, much shorter lasting.

Had one on Friday Flat this season that I was lucky enough to point out to my students.

Biggest one I’ve seen was in Niseko Jan 2019. Had the presence of the one in the video but probably 1/5 of the size and 1/5 of the duration, left the group of us that sat and watched it quite silent and stunned for a bit..
 
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