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What would make the perfect winter


stewfox

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Posted
  • Location: Napton on the Hill Warwickshire 500ft
  • Weather Preferences: Snow and heatwave
  • Location: Napton on the Hill Warwickshire 500ft

    I was wondering given the general forum wish for a cold snowy winter what would be the perfect set up ?

    Say from November to late March

    Are raw easterlies always the best ?

    1947 saw a lot of snow but 1963 was colder?

    If you could write your own charts what would you do?

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, convective precipitation, snow, thunderstorms, "episodic" months.
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire

    Different setups favour different areas, so there is no "right" answer here, but in general, for most of central and eastern England, easterlies are the most reliable source of significant snowfalls. Conversely, northerlies tend to be the most reliable source over Scotland and coastal NE England, while for many western areas, NW'lys and Atlantic vs. continental frontal battlegrounds tend to bring the most snow.

    So perhaps an illustration of the "ultimate" of each setup might be in order:

    An easterly:

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119910208.gif

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00219910208.gif

    A dumping for many, especially eastern England (Durham 40cm)

    Northerly:

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119550217.gif

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00219550217.gif

    Scotland, Operation Snowdrop.

    NW'ly:

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119550117.gif

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00219550117.gif

    Blackpool, 5 ft drifts, significant snow even in the southeast.

    and frontal battleground:

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119960206.gif

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00219960206.gif

    a huge dumping for much of the west.

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    Posted
  • Location: Western Isles
  • Location: Western Isles

    I was wondering given the general forum wish for a cold snowy winter what would be the perfect set up ?

    I wouldn't say everyone wants a cold winter

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    Posted
  • Location: Newbury Berkshire
  • Location: Newbury Berkshire

    The perfect winter for CS England would be predominantly mild with average rainfall and above average sunshine levels. After all the cost of energy is ridiculously high and we wouldn't want a prolonged cold spell lasting 3 or more months!

    I would ideally like a couple of weeks of cold weather from around the 23rd of December through to about the 6th January. This would be with a channel low pressure straddling a southerly tracking jet stream pulling in really cold SE winds and giving about a foot of snow for the Thames Valley. I would then be happy for the odd isolated spell of cold weather interspersed with Atlantic dominated SW winds, but nothing too stormy or wet.

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, convective precipitation, snow, thunderstorms, "episodic" months.
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire

    Well, I'm pretty sure what would be the "ideal" weather from an economist/business/practical point of view- and it would make very boring reading:

    Winter- dry, mild and sunny, some frontal rain at times overnight, brief snow event on Christmas Eve through Boxing Day but otherwise snowless

    Spring- dry, warm and sunny, frontal rain at times overnight, no convective rain

    Summer- dry, warm and sunny, no thunderstorms, no convective rain, but some frontal rain at times overnight

    Autumn- dry, warm and sunny, but some frontal rain at times overnight, no convective rain

    I for one am pleased that we don't have that kind of climate!

    My "ideal" winter, incidentally, would be episodic, with several cold snowy outbreaks from a combination of NW, N, NE and E (so that all parts of the country got their favoured setup), characterised by sunshine and snow showers plus some widespread dumpings from troughs/polar lows. These cold snaps would last 3-6 days at a time and be separated by spells of much milder weather. Mild spells would feature a mix of showery westerlies and south-westerlies, warm sunny southerlies, and anticyclonic spells with frosty nights, with the odd transitional N/NW'ly blast. Sunshine would be well above average everywhere.

    I would be interested in experiencing a winter like 1979 but it wouldn't be an "ideal" winter for me as I find that snow is best in 3-6 day bursts and becomes much more trouble than it's worth if it sticks around for weeks on end.

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    Posted
  • Location: Napton on the Hill Warwickshire 500ft
  • Weather Preferences: Snow and heatwave
  • Location: Napton on the Hill Warwickshire 500ft
    I wouldn't say everyone wants a cold winter

    Didn't suggest everyone does , just got the gut feeling based on the forum that a fair few would want a 'decent winter like the old days'

    Ps how do you get maps from 1955 ??

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, convective precipitation, snow, thunderstorms, "episodic" months.
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire

    Archive maps from Wetterzentrale are available here:

    http://www.netweather.tv/index.cgi?action=gfs;sess=

    For the record, there was a decent easterly at the beginning of January 1955 as well.

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    Posted
  • Location: Solihull, West Midlands. UK
  • Location: Solihull, West Midlands. UK

    Lots of snow. ;)

    A Scandinavian high pressure with winds blowing directly from the East. At the same time, a shallow low pressure with an occluded front over the south of the UK and plenty of moisture behind it. Cold air sinks underneath the PPN and snowflakes galore, then stalls and retreats back south. (First week of January 1982 I think this did actually happen as I had to go to and come back from school in a foot of the white stuff!)

    Or an alternative would be a polar low and its associated front moving south south west from Denmark, another low over the German Bight meet up. Wind being ENE and spread several hours of heavy snow over mainland Britain. (Early February 1987. It happened! And again, another foot of snow.)

    OR!

    9th December 1991. (It was a Saturday anyway!)

    After a day of heavy rain on the Friday, cold air undercuts the front coming down from Scotland which then stalls over the Midlands, Wales and East Anglia and, I remember this only too well. a foot of snow which must have fell between midnight and 9am that Saturday morning and the snow being so heavy, even in a powdery form was like a very dense fog.

    Have never seen anything like it since, apart from the 2 minute wintry shower. :)

    Phil.

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    • 3 weeks later...
    Posted
  • Location: Redhill, Surrey
  • Weather Preferences: Southerly tracking LPs, heavy snow. Also 25c and calm
  • Location: Redhill, Surrey

    The Great Feb 1986...it was sheer perfection. It started at the endo of January with LP almost moving N to S after splitting just west of the UK due to huge area of HP to our east over Russia. Th LP then anchored itself over France and so an easterly started to feed in which initially and quickly brought day time temps to +4c. Bill Giles then quoted 'If you think its cold now you wait until 2 or 3 days time....the rest is history. CET of -1.1

    Rrea00119860128.gif

    Rrea00119860129.gif

    Rrea00119860130.gif

    Rrea00119860131.gif

    BFTP

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    Posted
  • Location: Beccles, Suffolk.
  • Weather Preferences: Thunder, snow, heat, sunshine...
  • Location: Beccles, Suffolk.

    I would opt for a December 1981 setup: really cold with loads of snow. I've more chance of scooping the Euromillions, I'm afraid. :lol:

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    Posted
  • Location: Canmore, Canada [4296ft] & North Kent [350ft]
  • Location: Canmore, Canada [4296ft] & North Kent [350ft]

    My question would be would you want months of cold weather or just a once in a life time week event with tonnes of snow? I would go with the latter, in which case Jan 1987 for the south east was a pretty much perfect, once in a lifetime event. Easterly/north easterly winds and stremers of the sea, with sea effect snow and extreme cold. Amazing

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    Posted
  • Location: Norton, Stockton-on-Tees
  • Weather Preferences: Snow and cold in winter, warm and sunny in summer
  • Location: Norton, Stockton-on-Tees

    I posted elsewhere on the forum that I would love a winter comprised of December 1981 (CET of 0.3c), January 1987 (0.8c) and February 1986 (-1.1c).

    On reflection, perhaps 3 months of cold and snowy would be a bit much! Even then, I'm sure that before global cooling takes hold ;) , the best we can expect is probably December 1995 (2.3c), January 1997 (2.7c) and February 1991 (1.1c).

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, convective precipitation, snow, thunderstorms, "episodic" months.
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire

    If I could choose three months to comprise a winter, I'd probably go for December 1938 (that famous wintry spell around Christmas), January 1958 (variety) and February would be a difficult choice- perhaps 1970 or 1996 for cold bright snowy weather and some variety.

    Other Decembers that spring to mind include 1950, 1981 and 1995, but perhaps the former two in particular were a little extreme! I also like the look of January/February 1955 but again perhaps a little extreme in the north. January 1984 also appeals to me from the Midlands northwards with plenty of exciting weather, but not further south unfortunately.

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    Posted
  • Location: Solihull, West Midlands. UK
  • Location: Solihull, West Midlands. UK

    Just realised, I've already added my bit to this post. Why can't I delete this one?

    Suppose it keeps the post count ticking over. :lol:

    But yep. Perfect Winter... Snow and more snow. 1947 and 1963 respectively.

    But highly unlikely.

    Phil.

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    Posted
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
    Different setups favour different areas, so there is no "right" answer here, but in general, for most of central and eastern England, easterlies are the most reliable source of significant snowfalls. Conversely, northerlies tend to be the most reliable source over Scotland and coastal NE England, while for many western areas, NW'lys and Atlantic vs. continental frontal battlegrounds tend to bring the most snow.

    So perhaps an illustration of the "ultimate" of each setup might be in order:

    An easterly:

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119910208.gif

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00219910208.gif

    A dumping for many, especially eastern England (Durham 40cm)

    Northerly:

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119550217.gif

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00219550217.gif

    Scotland, Operation Snowdrop.

    NW'ly:

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119550117.gif

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00219550117.gif

    Blackpool, 5 ft drifts, significant snow even in the southeast.

    and frontal battleground:

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119960206.gif

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00219960206.gif

    a huge dumping for much of the west.

    The frontal battleground example you have shown, gave me the deepest fall of snow i've experienced in my lifetime (i'm only 30 mind!) Remember it well, I was in sixth form and the snow started about 11am on the Monday 5th and didn't relent until about 4pm on the 6th. At the end of it we had a depth of near 18 inches. School was closed for the week and Windermere was effectively cut off for two days. To get another event like that would be good.

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    My Idea of a perfect winter would be a repeat of the great frost of 1863/84 the coldest of the 17th Century or 1607/08 or 1740 or 1813/14. All these winters gave severe cold with long lasting snows and severe frosts cold enough to even freeze the sea. 1683/84 would be the best winter. it began mid December 1683 with a great frost and blinding snow storms. Jan 1684 had a central England mean of -3 and feb of -1. It was the best winter ever in temp record. another good one would have been 1813/14. which was almost as cold as 1683/84 and gave dense fog very severe snow and a long frost. Who knows may be such winters will return in the near future.

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    Posted
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District 290 mts. Wind speed 340 mts
  • Weather Preferences: Rain/snow, fog, gales and cold in every season
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District 290 mts. Wind speed 340 mts

    I'll have the cold of January 1795 amalgamated with the snow of February/March 1947 from the second week in November until the second week in April followed by a slow, cold thaw until about late May.

    Only the absolute hardest of hardcore snow and cold lovers will be posting positive thoughts on here towards the end of a winter like that and I will be the last to crack.

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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    sometimes TM I think you are nuts.

    having experienced both 74 and 63 never again thank you.

    2 weeks max of either type and I would be happy apart from trying to pay my bloody heating bill!

    always assuming that this country could cope with either type for 2 weeks, I suspect after 2 days we would be having very very serious problem replenishing the various commodities we all rely on these days.

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    Posted
  • Location: Broadmayne, West Dorset
  • Weather Preferences: Snowfall in particular but most aspects of weather, hate hot and humid.
  • Location: Broadmayne, West Dorset

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119780219

    Sheer perfection for the south west.

    Blizzard lasting up to 30 hours in places. 12- 15 inches on the low ground in Dorset with drifts 20-30 feet.

    Level snow 36 inches deep on top of Exmoor.

    Does it get any better.

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    Posted
  • Location: Norton, Stockton-on-Tees
  • Weather Preferences: Snow and cold in winter, warm and sunny in summer
  • Location: Norton, Stockton-on-Tees
    Only the absolute hardest of hardcore snow and cold lovers will be posting positive thoughts on here towards the end of a winter like that and I will be the last to crack.

    That sounds like a challenge :) !!

    If we ever had anything like that I'm sure that the government would declare a state of emergency! It certainly wouldn't help the economy either, although it would be a great time to buy shares in Calor gas!!

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    Posted
  • Location: Peterborough N.Cambridgeshire
  • Location: Peterborough N.Cambridgeshire
    sometimes TM I think you are nuts.

    having experienced both 74 and 63 never again thank you.

    2 weeks max of either type and I would be happy apart from trying to pay my bloody heating bill!

    always assuming that this country could cope with either type for 2 weeks, I suspect after 2 days we would be having very very serious problem replenishing the various commodities we all rely on these days.

    Everytime I read my Frozen in time book I think of you john and what a nightmare it must of been to experience 47,63.

    My ideal set up has to be the cold spells of Jan 87, Dec 78/79.

    The 87 cold spell was ideal because this wasn't your typical E,ly but an exceptionally cold, snowy E,ly. The sheer volume of snowfall via showers off the N sea was incredible and I will never forget a forecast from Francis Wilson predicting max temps of only -7C!

    The 78/79 cold spells were equally impressive but in a different way. The impressive snowstorms of Dec 31st 78 came via HP to our NW with LP tracking along the channel bringing gale force E,lys and vicious blizzards. The very best cold spell arrived in Feb 15th 79 with what I would class the most impressive set up for convective snow showers you are likely to ever see. Much of the eastern side of the UK was snowbound and here in Peterborough we were completely cut off!

    Look at these and enjoy.

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119790215.gif

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00219790215.gif

    Strong ENE,lys with a pool of -15c uppers racing across the N sea is pure heaven in my eyes.

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    Posted
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District 290 mts. Wind speed 340 mts
  • Weather Preferences: Rain/snow, fog, gales and cold in every season
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District 290 mts. Wind speed 340 mts
    sometimes TM I think you are nuts.

    having experienced both 74 and 63 never again thank you.

    2 weeks max of either type and I would be happy apart from trying to pay my bloody heating bill!

    always assuming that this country could cope with either type for 2 weeks, I suspect after 2 days we would be having very very serious problem replenishing the various commodities we all rely on these days.

    LOL, You're probably not the only one John.

    Unfortunately I wasn't even a twinkle in my parents' eyes in 1947 but I do remember 1963 and 1979, the latter was probably as severe here as most places on low ground experienced in 1947.

    I do have a perverse desire for things to be as severe as possible, just to see how society and it's fragile infrastructures would cope, I also agree with your suspicion that it probably wouldn't, initially at least, but it would be fascinating to see how we would adapt.

    I'd probably suffer as much as anyone as I work outdoors and with 5 feet of level snow and temperatures of -5c there wouldn't be alot to do.

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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
    Everytime I read my Frozen in time book I think of you john and what a nightmare it must of been to experience 47,63.

    47 I was only a kid so the snow, frost and constant power cuts were magic to me. Getting home from school, often on my Dads' shoulders if he was not at work, sitting by the coal fire with a bowl of soup after playing out on my sledge-yep, magic.

    63 well I was working but, unusually for then in the UK, most of the time in a centrally heated environment. Only the journeys home back to the Peak District on a cold double decker with an equally cold bedroom at my parents. I used to go to bed with more clothes on than during the day!

    The other winters you all quote well yes most were great for a time but begin to get a bit of a pain after a while.

    And as I've posted above and many times before, heaven help us all in our modern society if we ever get ONE month, perhaps even 1 WEEK as bad as some of the winters quoted. Our system of transporting all we need from vast storage centres to the supermarkets would certainly be hard pushed to cope in my view. Equally our dependence on gas and/or central heating of some form along with electric to drive the system let alone for lighting etc would struggle to cope after even a few days.

    3-5 days and I'd agree with TM any more no thank you.

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    Everytime I read my Frozen in time book I think of you john and what a nightmare it must of been to experience 47,63.

    My ideal set up has to be the cold spells of Jan 87, Dec 78/79.

    The 87 cold spell was ideal because this wasn't your typical E,ly but an exceptionally cold, snowy E,ly. The sheer volume of snowfall via showers off the N sea was incredible and I will never forget a forecast from Francis Wilson predicting max temps of only -7C!

    The 78/79 cold spells were equally impressive but in a different way. The impressive snowstorms of Dec 31st 78 came via HP to our NW with LP tracking along the channel bringing gale force E,lys and vicious blizzards. The very best cold spell arrived in Feb 15th 79 with what I would class the most impressive set up for convective snow showers you are likely to ever see. Much of the eastern side of the UK was snowbound and here in Peterborough we were completely cut off!

    Look at these and enjoy.

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00119790215.gif

    http://www.wetterzentrale.de/archive/ra/19...00219790215.gif

    Strong ENE,lys with a pool of -15c uppers racing across the N sea is pure heaven in my eyes.

    Like I said my ideal of a perfect winter would be a return to the ones we had in the little ice the best ones 1683/84 or 1813/14. Both these winters were very severe and snowy lasting from Decmber till march. 1683/84 began mid december with a great frost and blinding snow storms. that winter the ground froze many feet and even the sea froze. this is the most famous winter of the little ice age another one would be 1813/14 also was very severe and had thick fog followed by heavy snows and a long severe frost. early spring after these were cold. other good ones include 1694/95 1708/09 1715 and 1740. the last severe winter ever to hit the U.K was 1978/79 Since then there not been a single severe winter. Yes we had very severe spells in the 1980s but these were short in duration. the last good freeze was feb 1991. when we had a foot of snow and day time temps well below freezing. But do not despire the chances of another great winter hitting us are looking good. the sun is now in a very quite mode and all the great winters in the past seem to occure in times when the sun is quite.

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    Posted
  • Location: Runcorn.
  • Location: Runcorn.

    I've given this one some thought and the perfect winter for me would be temps in the minuses all through winter even in the day with snow but in a 1 week period then it pauses for 1 week then starts again. This snow lasting all winter but with a nice topping to make it deeper every so often with nice frosty nights. I would like north west england to be hit the hardest because we hardly get anything whilst the east coast and scotland tan it all up to there knees :lol:

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