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9 Dec 2009 start of the coldest winter since 78-79


damianslaw

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Posted
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl

Nearly 10 years on now, from the start of the coldest winter in England and Wales since 1978/79 and in Scotland I think since 1962/63 - correct me if wrong..

I must admit I was rather taken aback at the time at the rate of pace of change in the synoptics around 8-9 Dec, we had gone from a lengthy spell of atlantic westerlies, sometimes very mild southwesterlies in November with copious amounts of rain, to a chillier feed end Nov polar maritime then back to long drawn southwesterlies to start the month, but then suddenly rather unusually high pressure began to build over Norweigien Sea - out of nowhere, combined with the azores high pulsing north into France and then by the 10th/11th it surged through the UK and up to those heights to our NE, changing the pattern markedly. Thereafter we remained locked in a very cold pattern preety much until second week of March, with some slight tempering of the cold second half of January and early Feb - but nothing sustained.

I don't remember reading many posts suggesting a very cold winter at the time, I think it was the state of ENSO that had a marked effect on things that year.

Oh take me back to the ignorance and events of 10 years ago now.. the run up to christmas was excellent here.

Anyone else think the synoptics to our NE around the 9th Dec were odd! and how the azores high migrated to the NE in such a way..

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Posted
  • Location: Kirkcaldy, Fife, Scotland 20m ASL
  • Weather Preferences: Snow,Thunderstorms mix both for heaven THUNDERSNOW 😜😀🤤🥰
  • Location: Kirkcaldy, Fife, Scotland 20m ASL
3 minutes ago, damianslaw said:

Nearly 10 years on now, from the start of the coldest winter in England and Wales since 1978/79 and in Scotland I think since 1962/63 - correct me if wrong..

I must admit I was rather taken aback at the time at the rate of pace of change in the synoptics around 8-9 Dec, we had gone from a lengthy spell of atlantic westerlies, sometimes very mild southwesterlies in November with copious amounts of rain, to a chillier feed end Nov polar maritime then back to long drawn southwesterlies to start the month, but then suddenly rather unusually high pressure began to build over Norweigien Sea - out of nowhere, combined with the azores high pulsing north into France and then by the 10th/11th it surged through the UK and up to those heights to our NE, changing the pattern markedly. Thereafter we remained locked in a very cold pattern preety much until second week of March, with some slight tempering of the cold second half of January and early Feb - but nothing sustained.

I don't remember reading many posts suggesting a very cold winter at the time, I think it was the state of ENSO that had a marked effect on things that year.

Oh take me back to the ignorance and events of 10 years ago now.. the run up to christmas was excellent here.

Anyone else think the synoptics to our NE around the 9th Dec were odd! and how the azores high migrated to the NE in such a way..

December 2009 is tied 5th coldest with 1995 in Scotland https://www.metoffice.gov.uk/pub/data/weather/uk/climate/datasets/Tmean/ranked/Scotland.txt

here in East Scotland it is tied 4th coldest with 1976 

here are some articles on that winter (cant get them to link properly just type in google December 2009 cold weather agupubs and it is the articles by Judah Cohen and J . Cattiaux) 

https://www.metoffice.gov.uk/binaries/content/assets/metofficegovuk/pdf/weather/learn-about/uk-past-events/interesting/2010/snow-and-low-temperatures---december-2009-to-january-2010---met-office.pdf

also type in google The UK winter of 2009/2010 compared with severe winters of the last 100 years for another article 

 

 

 

 

 

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Posted
  • Location: Cleeve, North Somerset
  • Weather Preferences: Continental winters & summers.
  • Location: Cleeve, North Somerset

Many find memories of this winter, which I actually much preferred to the following winter, even though Dec 2010 was better. Some memories from the winter:

11th Dec - final Carol service of secondary school - cold and foggy

17th Dec - second driving lesson ever and it snowed in the afternoon

20th/21st Dec - a memorable snow streamer off the Bristol Channel 

23rd Dec - snow to rain event

01st-04th Jan - very frosty start to the New Year

06th Jan - school was supposed to return but was cancelled due to heavy snow

07th/08th Jan - exceptionally cold and Bristol harbour frozen 

13th Jan - heavy snow again and nearly missed A level exams because of it

After midmonth, the rest of the winter produced no disruptive weather here although it snowed multiple times in February and there were some flurries later in January.

All in all a great winter!

 

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Posted
  • Location: Crewe, Cheshire
  • Weather Preferences: Snow, storms and other extremes
  • Location: Crewe, Cheshire

Yes a brilliant winter that featured longevity and snowfalls scattered throughout.

That -15c night in early January will stick in my memory forever, the steam rising from street drains. 

The nostalgia is strong with this one.

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Posted
  • Location: Irlam
  • Location: Irlam

John Hammond giving hints of what was to come. 

Everything for a winter lover around here seem to come off, most of the marginal events came off. The one disappointment was that easterly short spell in early January, it was poor for an easterly. When you saw the charts at the start of January and given how cold and snowy had been before even an easterly developed. 

Also notable how mild spells showing up  in the charts even at medium range seem to downgrade as we got closer to the timeframe. That first week of February and it looked, we were going to have the mildest spell since the start of December but that just got downgraded quickly and the block was back. 

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Posted
  • Location: Dundee
  • Weather Preferences: Snow, thunderstorms, gales. All extremes except humidity.
  • Location: Dundee

Winter 2009/10 had 65 days snow lying in my home area in Highland Perthshire which was about 10 fewer than 1978/9. However the calendar year 2010 had 95 days which was the highest since 1963.
The higher Spey valley had over 100 snow lying days in 2009/10.

The lowest temp was nearly -20C in late Dec 2009 just beating the lowest in Dec 2010 and equal to the lowest in Jan 1979. I don't have the temp records for 1963 unfortunately as it was before the local records were recorded officially.

If I recall correctly parts of the Highlands were colder in 2009/10 than in 1978/9 and maybe even 1963. I do have the details somewhere in my computer but it is defunkt for now.

Edited by Norrance
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Posted
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
7 hours ago, Norrance said:

Winter 2009/10 had 65 days snow lying in my home area in Highland Perthshire which was about 10 fewer than 1978/9. However the calendar year 2010 had 95 days which was the highest since 1963.
The higher Spey valley had over 100 snow lying days in 2009/10.

The lowest temp was nearly -20C in late Dec 2009 just beating the lowest in Dec 2010 and equal to the lowest in Jan 1979. I don't have the temp records for 1963 unfortunately as it was before the local records were recorded officially.

If I recall correctly parts of the Highlands were colder in 2009/10 than in 1978/9 and maybe even 1963. I do have the details somewhere in my computer but it is defunkt for now.

I think the north of Scotland - Sutherland had a colder winter than 62/63.

Here the winter was quite similiar to 78/79, though the cold started 2 weeks earlier.. and January 2010 wasn't as cold as Jan 79. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
Posted
  • Location: Edmonton Alberta(via Chelmsford, Exeter & Calgary)
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine and 15-25c
  • Location: Edmonton Alberta(via Chelmsford, Exeter & Calgary)

this winter does not stand out to me very much simply because i was in the process of moving to Canada where obviously the weather was colder and snowier..all that really sticks out was the snow event of Jan 6, 2010..im surprised it was the coldest winter since 78-79..didn't  seem as cold as those 1980's winters 

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Posted
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
1 hour ago, cheeky_monkey said:

this winter does not stand out to me very much simply because i was in the process of moving to Canada where obviously the weather was colder and snowier..all that really sticks out was the snow event of Jan 6, 2010..im surprised it was the coldest winter since 78-79..didn't  seem as cold as those 1980's winters 

The winter was consistently cold for nearly 3 months, mid Dec until mid March, though away from Scotland it didn't bring severe notable cold, though the first week of Jan brought widespread minima below -10 degrees. Also major snowfalls were quite shortlived and localised, mid Scotland saw severe snowfall just after christmas, parts of NW and central/southern england saw copious amounts on the 6th Jan, but again quite narrow, and not widespread.

For these reasons I think it perhaps for some didn't feel as notable as the likes of 81/82, 84/85, Feb 86 and Jan 87. However, none of those winters brought the same level of consistent cold. Winter 84/85 took until the new year to get going. Winter 81/82 fizzled out mid Jan. Winter 85/86 started very mild, became a bit colder just after christmas and into New Year, then average much of rest of Jan until the end followed by the freezing Feb - the opposite to winter 10/11 in some respects, which reserved its cold for the start.

In my lifetime I would rank the run up to christmas 2009 as probably the best 17-25th Dec period, mainly because it was timed so perfectly adding a winter wonderland festive feel and we had heavy snowfalls on the 20/21st, I would have ranked Dec 2010, higher had we had some snow, but we just had it on the ground, for cold it beats Dec 2009 though.

 

Edited by damianslaw
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Posted
  • Location: halifax 125m
  • Weather Preferences: extremes the unusual and interesting facts
  • Location: halifax 125m
On 06/12/2019 at 20:58, damianslaw said:

I think the north of Scotland - Sutherland had a colder winter than 62/63.

Here the winter was quite similiar to 78/79, though the cold started 2 weeks earlier.. and January 2010 wasn't as cold as Jan 79. 

Maybe the lakes and Scotland have different weather than here in the pennines as there really is no comparison between winter 1978/79 and that of 2009/10.!979 gave 4 major blizzards between the end of December and late March whereas 2010 had one in January where the wind didn't really pick up.Air frosts however were 57 over the extended winter in 9/10 and 86 in 1979,even 2013 beats that of 2010 with 70.Certainly here 1979 was in another League where snow came late December and remained under the walls well into May

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Posted
  • Location: Home: Chingford, London (NE). Work: London (C)
  • Weather Preferences: Winter: cold and snowy. Summer: hot and sunny
  • Location: Home: Chingford, London (NE). Work: London (C)

December 2009 was pretty epic for Scotland. Down here in London we had some snow and it was pretty cold, but I wouldn’t say it was anything exceptional. 

Early Jan 2010 was better for snow totals down south. 

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Posted
  • Location: Wyke regis overlooking Chesil beach.
  • Weather Preferences: Snowfall
  • Location: Wyke regis overlooking Chesil beach.

Down here in Dorset 2009/10 was cold yes but snow wise was very poor.  We even had  a red warning of 12-18 inches of snow from which not one flake fell. ( still having counselling for that). 2008/9 was better snow wise  and December 2010 produced more snowfall and colder temps than 2008/9 and 2009/10 combined

Dec 2010 by far and away best winter spell since the 1980’s in these parts and coldest since at least 1879 here in Dorset.

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Posted
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl

There was quite a marked split cold wise between the north and south in 2009/2010, Scotland, far north of England and N Ireland saw persistant cold, whereas further south at times saw something a bit milder, and hence not quite as extreme.

 

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Posted
  • Location: Irlam
  • Location: Irlam

11th December 2009-10th March 2010 had a CET of about 2.0C

The lack of really mild spells was notable in that period. The highest daily CET mean for January was just 5.5C and there are few Januarys where the highest daily CET mean for the month was that low. Even January 1795 managed one daily CET mean higher than that.

It wasn't until the 17th March 2010, the first daily CET mean of 7.0C and above for the year was recorded and that is unusually late. 

 

Edited by Weather-history
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Posted
  • Location: Merseyside/ West Lancs Border; North West England
  • Weather Preferences: Winter: Cool & dry, with regular cold, snowy periods.
  • Location: Merseyside/ West Lancs Border; North West England

Is it really 10 years......and as an above poster said, I preferred this December/ Winter to the following one.

As far as I remember, we didn't have loads of snow, but enough and several falls to boot. And we had a spell of sustained cold. I recall a shopping trip to Cheshire Oaks the week before Christmas, and on the way home it went from rain to sleet - later that night it did snow but nothing too much. However there was enough in the run up to Christmas, as I went to a funeral on the morning of Christmas Eve, and it felt very Dickensian. There were still patches of snow on Christmas Day so it felt like a 'proper' Christmas.

And then there was the early January snowfalls.....

The contrast with the current month is pretty stark. Nothing worse than a gloom filled mild festive period.

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Posted
  • Location: Near King's Lynn 13.68m ASL
  • Weather Preferences: Hoar Frost, Snow, Misty Autumn mornings
  • Location: Near King's Lynn 13.68m ASL

The best Dec snow event in decades IMBY. Heavy, lake-effect, powder snow on the night of the 17th left several inches and a power cut at about 4am. Far better than Dec 10 which was bitterly cold, but largely dry here.

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Posted
  • Location: Alford, Aberdeenshire.
  • Location: Alford, Aberdeenshire.

Winter 2009/10 up these parts was a nightmare, snowploughs were still in use during the first week of May 2010. Hopefully we never see it's like again.

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Posted
  • Location: Irlam
  • Location: Irlam

10 years ago today

Remember waking up in the earlier hours looking out of the window and seeing clear skies but you could see anvil clouds way out in the Irish Sea. It was a very cold morning, something like -7C. The first snow shower came through about 6am. It was snowing and it was about -4C

 

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Posted
  • Location: Longden, Shropshire
  • Location: Longden, Shropshire
3 hours ago, Weather-history said:

Can't believe this was 10 years ago today. Heavy cluster of snow showers came through during the morning

 

I know, it’s amazing how time flies. 10 years on and things are somewhat different......

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