Caldwell’s New Wind Meter
Dr. John Woods 04.22.14
Big game hunters know that wind is perhaps the number one environmental factor that can impact hunting tactics and strategies. Hunters can tell from what direction a wind is blowing by tossing a milkweed in the air, but the speed of that breeze can also be a critical piece of information to have.
Deer hunters have always used wind direction and speed to govern their choices on where to hunt, when to hunt, and how to hunt. A lot of their decision making was obviously based on observations of wind in the hunting area. Like me, a lot of hunters walk outside on the porch, wet a finger, or watch the leaves in the trees moving to determine the direction. From that we can make choices about the best hunting stands to use and how to approach them.
But determining wind speed and its potential impact on hunting success is a little more challenging than just determining direction. Like judging antlers from a distance, it is a difficult task and only becomes easier after many years of experience. It is easy to make mistakes.
Now, with the introduction of Caldwell Shooting Supply’s new Crosswind Professional Wind Meter, hunters, campers, hikers, anglers, and anybody playing or working outdoors can have a definite read on exact wind speed plus other environmental readings.
The new, extremely lightweight Crosswind Meter is capable of assessing (1) wind speed in three different settings, (2) station or barometric pressure, (3) temperature, (4) altitude, and (5) density altitude. There is also a Data Hold feature that will retain all the measurements on the LCD screen so the unit can be put down and still keep the data readings.
The unit also comes with a backlight feature in the screen. Function control is done with three simple buttons on the bottom of the face of the meter to turn it on or change its various features. The Caldwell Meter also has a built in automatic five minute power turn off feature to save the battery life. Speaking of which, the meter is powered by a single CR2032, 3.0 volt battery installed into a battery compartment on the backside of the unit that is unlocked using a coin to turn the door to the open position.
The wind speed reading “fan” on top can also be rotated so that the user can turn the screen away from the sun to make reading the screen easier. This feature is also used to measure a crosswind while facing down range or 90 degrees to the crosswind. This reading can help hunters and shooters assess crosswind speed blowing to or across the terminal target.
The Caldwell Meter also comes with a handy holster case and a lanyard that can be threaded through the bottom of the unit. The nylon case has a Velcro closure as well as a belt loop, but fits easily into a shirt or coat pocket. The lanyard can be used coming out either through the top or bottom of the case.
One final feature of this meter is a 1/4-20 UNC threaded insert on the bottom of the unit that can allow the meter to be mounted on any regular camera or utility tripod.
In practical use, the Caldwell Crosswind Meter is easier to use than it is for me to explain how to use it. Just turn it on and face the wind fan (anemometer) head into the prevailing breeze. The wind speed and temperature will be shown immediately on the screen.
The temperature feature can be rotated via the control buttons to read the other measurement options, including barometric pressure, altitude, or density altitude. I only wish it had a time of day feature, too. The meter retails for under $40.