Wait 5 Minutes

If you don’t like the weather in Ol’ Montana wait 5 minutes. This old saying around these parts holds true as long as my memory serves me. One minute it can be 100 degrees, the next the wind and the hail can come and the thermometer reads 50.

Winter Scene in Montana

Winter in Montana

You can have a bright sunshiny day in the middle of the winter and a North wind will start blowing and the temperature can drop from a balmy 20 above to 10 below or worse. All of this can be accompanied with blowing snow and blizzard conditions. Then the Wind Chill, what should I say about that. When I was a kid no one knew anything about Wind Chill except my Dad would say , “That’s a damn cold wind.” No kidding Doris it was. You just had brains enough to bundle up when you walked to school. I didn’t walk 5 miles to school when I was young like my folks and others, but I sure didn’t get a ride the 5 or 6 blocks I walked. You had sense enough if the wind was blowing in your face to turn around, duh…

Pat Crites in Montana Winter

My Beautiful Mother had sense to have her coat on

Russ Crites, Winter in Montana

Ready for Winter

Another wonderful feature of Northern Montana in the middle of the winter is the phenomenon known as the “Chinook”, more precisely it is the “Chinook Wind”, which is a warm southwesterly wind. The word Chinook means “Snow Eater” in the Indian language. This is just what it does. You can have 6 to 8 inches of snow and it can be below zero and the Chinook wind comes and it’s above freezing with the snow melting away.

You gotta love this country. You gotta love it. They say variety is the spice of life, here it is. They say there isn’t really 4 seasons in Montana there is only Winter and Road Construction. I don’t care, I love her.

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  1. Arla says:

    I can remember the wind blowing a semi off the interstate by
    Sunburst, and another time there it blew a barbed wire fence over 2 lanes of the interstate Southbound) at about the same place.

  2. Slim says:

    yep there is a book which tells the History of Hill County in Northern Montana called “Always the Wind” and boy that’s for sure.

  3. Tim Mack says:

    You can wait 10 minutes or drive down the road 20 miles. There was a time when living in Monarch the temp was in the +40’s drove down the mountain to Belt and hit a different kind of inversion the temperature dropped to the teens. Just did not seem right to me, but that is the way the weather goes in Montana.

  4. Elena says:

    This one reminds me of your book “The Awakening”. Excellently written I might add! And Tim you are spot on! Started in Great Falls one day beautiful and sunny, storm blew in as we were leaving town, torrential rains, like a curtain you could see it comming. In the blink of an eye, it dissapated. 20 miles down the road we were blessed with sleet which 5 minutes later turned to hail. Blue skies the rest of our trip. But like I say our winters keep our fairer weathered friends from populating the our beautiful state, maybe the wind and changing weather conditions do as well!

  5. Slim says:

    Both Tim’s and Elena’s stories ring true. A trip to Billings one summer day and hit with hail in one stretch, then torrential rain down the road that actually washed the road out between Billing and Roundup. A lady tried to drive across the water over the road and was drowned. Tough day to travel.

  6. jody says:

    brings back such great memories, Russ. thanks

    • Slim says:

      Thanks for takin the time Jody, sure is nice to bring a memory or two back for people.

  7. Susan Bliss says:

    I can remember when I was still living in Havre – 70’s maybe? – the temperature was 50 in the afternoon and a cold front came down out of Canada and it was 40 below before bedtime. 90 degree difference! Love MT weather!!! Thanks for the memories!

  8. Slim says:

    Thanks for coming by Susan, yep Montana weather you never can tell…

  9. Maggie says:

    Gotta love the weather in Montana. I spent all my summers in Great Falls and Flowree for harvest of spring wheat. Many afternoons turned stormy and cool only to blow through and be hot and sunny 1/2 hour later. Wish I was there now in my older age. Someday!!!! Thanks for the flood of memories.

  10. Slim says:

    Thank you for stopping by Maggie, I like to think back and remember, glad a memory or two floated by. Keep comin back. I appreciate your time.

  11. Michelle says:

    I have these great memories about Montana, too! I love Montana. .it will always be home. . Thankyou again so much for sharing!!!

  12. Slim says:

    Thanks Michelle.. Keep coming back…

  13. Michelle says:

    Holds true to this day-Hot and smoky today..snow and rain by Thursday and Friday (Just in time for me to drive back to Washington. .)

    • Slim says:

      Just as everything changes, everything stays the same.. Thanks for coming by..

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