Mediterranean Winds

Westerly Winds

These winds flow through the Strait of Gibraltar, but in a direction opposite to the Levante. There are two types of Westerly winds: 

  • Vendaval - strong southwesterlies ahead of cold fronts that occur with a low advancing from the west, often accompanied by thunderstorms and violent squalls, and

  • Poniente - northwesterlies behind cold fronts flowing off the southeast coast of Spain and into the Alboran Channel, as well as through the Strait of Gibraltar. 

Both types of Westerly winds are associated with 500 mb trough passages through the Strait of Gibraltar. Note: MEDEX forecasts for gale-force Westerly make no distinction between either wind type.



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This page compliments of Marisa Ciceran

Created: Thursday, June 20, 2002; Last updated: Tuesday, October 16, 2012
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