Wind Direction

The wind direction we use on this page is the direction the wind is coming from, given in a 16 point compass format.

For example, if the wind is shown as NNW (North-North-West), if you stand facing forward into the wind, you will be looking towards the NNW. N means the wind is coming from the North, that’s from a heading of 360 degrees.

Out of interest, Buys Ballot’s Law states that if you stand with your back to the wind in the Northern Hemisphere, then low pressure will be to your left hand side.

This generally holds true at higher latitudes but tends to break down towards the equator and is reversed in the Southern hemisphere where the low pressure will be to the right hand side.

Buys Ballot's law first appeared in early versions (prior to 1900) of Bowditchs' American Practical Navigator and other publications written to assist in passage planning and the safe conduct of ships at sea.

It is still included today both in Bowditch and in Sailing Directions (see following reference) as an item of practical reference and information.