Nares Strait is a major pathway along which multi-year sea ice leaves the Arctic, an ice class that seen a recent dramatic reduction in extent. The winds that blow along the strait play an important role in modulating this ice export as well as in establishing the Arctic’s largest and most productive polynya, the North Water, that forms at its southern terminus. However, its remote location has limited knowledge of the winds along the strait. Here we use automatic weather station from Hans Island, in the middle of the strait, to assess the ability of a set of atmospheric analyses with a common lineage but with varying horizontal resolution to represent the variability in the wind field. We find that the flow is highly bidirectional, consistent with topographic channeling, with the highest wind speeds from the north and that a model resolution of ~9km is required to capture the observed variability. The wind field at Hans Island is also found to be representative of variability in the flow along much of Nares Strait.