How To Use Natural Clues To Read The Wind - NSSF Let's Go Hunting

How To Use Natural Clues To Read The Wind

As with all aspects of shooting, particularly at long range, learning to properly read the wind requires practice and familiarity with the basics.

How can you use natural environmental elements to help read the wind and make adjustments?

  • Mirage, which refers to the way light rays are bent due to the heat difference of the ground and the air, can be used, if they’re moving, to help illustrate wind direction and intensity. Read the full article to get a better understanding of how to use Mirage to assess the wind.
  • Grass, leaves, tree branches and other flora are good indicators of wind speed and direction. Read the full article to learn how to use these natural clues.
  • If you’re hunting in a foreign environment, use a windmeter to measure values and their effects on flora; then, you can estimate wind values at range based on the amount of movement of that particular plant. Read the full article for the benefits of a windmeter.

Wind is a predictable effect, assuming the values are known and things are constant. Making correct adjustments to overcome those effects — that’s the key to successful shooting.

Read the full article at for a more detailed explanation of how to use these environmental elements

Special thanks to for providing this insightful content. is a shooter’s opportunity to keep up with what’s going on in the world of the gun.

In this video, former Army Ranger sniper team leader Ryan Cleckner explains how to estimate wind speed, shares a formula for calculating wind drift, and explains how ballistic charts and empirical data gathered at the range can help hunters and target shooters properly compensate for the effects of wind.

See more videos from NSSF