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Williwaw is the name for a sudden violent, cold, Katabatic gust of wind descending from a mountainous coast of high latitudes to the sea and are most common n the Strait of Magellan or the Aleutian Islands.

The term williwaw is of Native American origin which refers to a strong erratic gust of wind and the effects of a williwaw gust are a constant danger for any vessel trying to sail around Cape Horn:

Then there are those famous Katabatic winds or "Williwaws," which can wreak havoc in short order. If you feel sudden rises in temperature - beware. This is an air parcel coming down from the mountains and is in compression. In its most violent manifestation ( a williwaw) it can dump over high land spilling out onto the water at well over 120 knots whipping up the water into a white frenzy.

They are also known as the Alskan winds. However, similar gusts with many local names do occur at many high latitude coasts from Siberia to Patagonia.

Williwaw wb241002 0.gif

Source: WeatherOnline