Winds at Baikal
The wind regime of the lake is also very interesting. The air torrents over Baikal are influenced by the location of the surrounding mountain ranges. It is a stormy lake, in the autumn there are 19 stormy days a month. There is a great verity of winds here, their names are very specific and usually reflect their geographical origin or character: Verkhovik (blowing from above), Gornaya (mountainous), etc.
Some of them possess a great destructive power tearing off the roofs of houses, splashing huge waves, making the lake dark, turning over boats and ships. In 1907 over 200 people became victims of Sarma - a north-western wind that is the strongest of all the winds. It begins to blow in the early autumn from the river valley of the same name and reaches the hurricane strength – up to 40 meters per second (89.5 miles per hour) and more. A very peculiar feature of this wind is its suddenness.
The Barguzin wind glorified in the famous Russian folk song comes blowing from Barguzin valley across the lake and it was that wind that had helped the legendary swimmer cross Baikal in an omul fish barrel.
Fogs are quite frequent on the lake too. The air over Lake Baikal consists of several layers. The layer closest to the water surface is the coolest, while the lighter layers in summers are warmer. Streams of warm air flow into the basins at the shores that are better warmed by the sun. The warm air is mixing with the cold humid surface streams and results in fogs and winds. In early summer the land is well warmed while the lake’s surface is still cold. Because of the warm air brought up to the lake's cold surface fogs appear.