The Weather at Howhill

Station Information


Howhill Howhill, Garrigill, Alston, Cumbria at an altitude of approximately 1400' in the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

This location is somewhat more exposed than the local centres of habitation, Garrigill and Alston. We are noticeably colder and windier than the village or town. During the winter we will frequently have falling or lying snow but Garrigill and Alston, being 400' lower, will only have rain.


The equipment is an Oregon Scientific WM918 Electronic Weather Station system, linked to a Pentium III 700Mhz computer running SME Server [Open link in a new window] , a Linux based server/firewall package. The computer logs all the data from the WM918 system and automatically generates the web pages.

The data logging and web page generation is performed by Tim Whitham's wx200d [Open link in a new window] Linux drivers and Perl scripts. The Perl scripts have been edited to generate pages and graphs more to my liking but they are still heavily based on Tims original work. Many thanks Tim.

The sensors are not in absolutely ideal locations. The temperature/hygrometer sensors are not housed within a Stephenson screen, the wind vane and anemometer are not at the regulation 10m and are too close to the house, and the rain gauge is also too close to a building and is not a ground level. Having said all that, they do produce fairly good picture of the actual conditions up here, with the following provisos:

Temperature Suffers a °C or two over reading on hot sunny days due to hot air from the adjacent shed roof.
Wind Sheltered by trees and buildings when the wind is coming from the West round to North. This can be seen as rather more erratic direction indication than the norm.

Why WX200 instead of WM918? Because Tandy (UK) do not sell the Radio Shack (US) WX200 Weather Station. Instead Oregon Scientific market the WM918 in the UK and European markets. The two devices are nearly identical so software for the WX200 also works with the WM918.

The OEM for these units was Huger Electronics in Germany. Check the links section below for more information about the WX200 and available 3rd party software. Most platforms are supported.

WM918 Specification
WM918 consol Indoor Outdoor Indoor/Outdoor Resolution
Range Accuracy Range Accuracy
Temperature 0°C to 50° 0°C to 40°C ±1°C
>40°C to 50°C ±2°C
-40°C to 60°C -40°C to <0°C ±2°C
0°C to 40°C ±1°C
>40°C to 50°C ±2°C
>50°C to 60°C ±3°C
0.1°C (typical)
Humidity 10 to 97%RH 25 to 40%RH ±7%RH
40 to 80%RH ±5%RH
80 to 90%RH ±7%RH
10 to 97%RH 25 to 40%RH ±8%RH
40 to 80%RH ±6%RH
80 to 90%RH ±8%RH
Barometric Pressure 795 to 1050mb ±7mb 1mb
Wind Speed 0 to 56m/s
(0 to 125.3mph)
2 to <10m/s ±1m/s
10 to 56m/s ±10%
Wind Direction 0 to 359° 0 to 347° ±8°
<0° or >347° ±18°
Rainfall Daily: 0 to 9999mm <15mm 1mm ±1 digit
15 to 9999mm ±5% ±1 digit
Cumulative: 0 to 9999mm <20mm 1mm ±1 digit
20 to 9999mm ±5% ±1 digit
Rate: 0 to 998mm/hr <15mm/hr ±1mm +1 unit
15 to 998mm/hr ±7% +1 unit


Software [Open link in a new window]
For many electronic weather stations including the WX-200. Many platforms: OS/2, Linux, Mac and Windows.

WX200 Bulletin Board [Open link in a new window]
Useful Bulletin Board for hints, tips and solutions to WX200 problems.

Unofficial WX200 Support [Open link in a new window]
The Unofficial Radio Shack WX-200 Electronic Weather Station Support Page.

Sourceforge wx200d project [Open link in a new window]
Sourceforge wx200d homepage [Open link in a new window]
Where to get Tim Whitman's wx200d driver etc.

WX200 Sensor Information [Open link in a new window]
Ian Pople's WX200 sensor information, everything you wanted to know about the sensors but were to afraid to ask.

WX200 / WM918 User Manual [Open link in a new window]
A page on the Radio Shack support site with links to the WX200 (WM918) weather station quick start guide, user manual and detailed parts list.

Howhill Weather
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Sat 3 Jan 2009, 22:48 GMT