The primary wind direction produced by the surface gradient is northerly from September through March, and southerly from April through August. Wind speed is usually less than 20 knots due to the normal gradient. However, certain synoptic situations will produce sustained winds that require small craft warnings for periods of 24-36 hours. Direction, if west of south, gradually veers from the sea breeze resultant direction to the land breeze direction. If east of south, the wind backs to the land breeze direction. Hence, the primary influence on the surface wind from May through September is the land and sea breeze effect.

  a. Gusty winds are fairly common and can be expected with frontal passages, thunderstorms, southerly gradient winds intensified by the sea breeze, and occasional tropical storms or hurricanes.  The topography of the surrounding terrain is such that there is no effective up-slope motion or variations such as the venture or foehn effects.

  b. Sea and Land Breeze regimes.  Considering a no-force gradient, when the land warms to 7-10 degrees F above local bay and gulf temperatures, a sea breeze will develop in any season, but is more pronounced in the summer months June to early September.

Concept Mapping Toolkit
Insitute for Human and Machine Cognition
The University of West Florida