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The real Lomond snowstorm

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    Close to Loch Lomond, 20 miles NW of Glasgow

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  1. Look at it as a trade off. You get a very dry climate and semi-decent summer in Essex but little snow and mild winters . Much of the rest of the UK ,the 600 + miles of the country further north, gets a colder winter most of the time but a lot more rain (3 times as much where I live ) and rubbish summers. You can't really get both in the UK regularly, though Aberdeen may give you both the dry weather and the cold weather. Anyway, first snow of the year here on Saturday, with about 3 inches which is nearly gone now, washed away by the rain last night. The mountains to the north have been covered in snow for a while and they've had snow to the south and east on a couple of occasions but up until Saturday it was either frosty and dry or (more often) cold rain and sleet here and I was beginning to think that it wasn't my year. It's still not been as good as last year. North Westerlies seem to be best for snow here when it's marginal or only a little bit cold.
  2. In 2011/2012 we had a couple of storms that certainly had gusts 95 -100mph but probably 80mph+ sustained. In one of them a 5 foot high double glazed window was actually blown in the common area of the place I was living in at that time. It landed (and shattered) outside my front door. That was a bit of a surprise at 07:30 in the morning The other time I came out of a meeting at work to find most people gone and several phone messages and emails telling me to leave and go home straight away. The amount of debris flying around makes them fairly hazardous. Over the last 20 years we've had similar storms 6 or 7 times. Now I have a 100 foot high oak tree only 30-40 feet from the house. Given my luck previously with extreme weather.....
  3. I keep on hearing that last winter was bad yet where I live we had more snow than any winter since 2010. A bit higher than the average here. Admittedly we didn't have a lot of nights below freezing out with the snowy spells Whereas March (2013 ?) we didn't get a single snow flake. We seem to benefit from PM snow whereas a lot of easterlies never seem to reach this far west. And if it comes from the north there's two hundred and fifty miles of mountains for it to get past.
  4. The snow was amazing that December. It was proper dry, powder snow rather than the wet, heavy stuff we normally get. Hillwalking in my local hills was fantastic. I never had more than six inches lying in the streets because I'm in the snow shadow of the highlands when the weather comes from the North or North East. When the thaw did come around Boxing day it actually took two weeks for the ice to finally disappear off the pavements which made Yaktrax very handy for a while.
  5. Nick, I loved it at first. It was after a week of ice days and extreme cold. When it occasionally got above freezing it was fine To be fair I was living in an old property at the time, unlike now. I also now have winter tyres.
  6. Yes, though I initially enjoyed the cold and snow in Nov / Dec 2010 by the time it was getting close to Christmas I was getting desperate for some warmer days. Extended deep cold is fine until... 1. Your central heating stops working because the condensate pipe has frozen (under the floor) and the gas man is unable to come for two days as he has loads of other call outs. And it is -18C overnight with -9C daily maximum. 2. The external drain pipe has frozen (all 40 feet of it) and when somebody flushes the loo upstairs the inevitable happens. And the plumber tells you that there's nothing that can be done until the thaw comes. 3. It takes half an hour to get the door open on your car as it is covered in a layer of (very) solid ice. And without winter tyres you're going to be sliding all over the place anyway as salt is not effective below -10C. And most public transport is off. 4. When the thaw does start you're going to have burst pipes (under the floor boards again in my case), stonework on your property may be damaged by the freeze/thaw and the roads have so many potholes that a damaged tyre or puncture is inevitable. 5. And if you're really unlucky you'll have burst pipes elsewhere that mean you have no water to your property but the ground will remain frozen for weeks on end making access impossible. Thankfully this latter one didn't happen to me, the others.....
  7. I can tolerate warmth, it's the rain and cloud and gloom that gets me. Sunrise here at the edge of the Highlands is 08:45 and sunset 15:45 and the gloom during the day means that it feels like a 4 or 5 hour day. We had average temperatures for the first half of the month but the last week or so it has been exceptionally mild but it has felt better because we've had less rain and the occasional bright spell. One day we even had blue sky for an afternoon and that's been pretty rare since October. I enjoy snow and cold frosty mornings as much as most of the people here but if it is choice between cold and wet/windy and mild and brighter/drier I would definitely opt for the latter.
  8. The average max daily temperature in December for my location on the southern edge of the Scottish Highlands is 6.4C. And daily maximums in this area has varied between 10C and 4C most days, with a fair few around the 6C and 7C mark. So, a fairly average December temperature wise. It's worth bearing in mind that geographically half of the mainland UK is from Cumbria / North Yorkshire northwards and temperatures here have been much cooler than the rest of the UK. And as the weather is geographically related, taking the UK as a whole, the temperature has perhaps not been as extreme as many on here are espousing. Perhaps the really unusual element about this winter is the temperature gradient and weather differences that have existed for so long north or south of the 54 degree latitude line and why there has been so little overlap / change in that position. Or maybe what I'm really trying to say is that the real question is "why has the 'Euro slug' maintained its position for such a long period of time "
  9. I'm a fan of cold and snow (in winter). But after six weeks of wind and rain here (near Loch Lomond) I would love some of the weather that people are complaining about. The only variety we've had is cold rain or warm rain (4C or 10C) and the strength of the wind. Flooding on the roads, local river bursting its banks and the worst bit is the endless gloom when day is only seven hours long anyway. And, being in the 'North' doesn't mean we get much snow here either with the average being 5-10 days a year despite being able to see 3,000 feet mountains in the distance and being surrounded by 1,000 foot hills. It really could be a lot worse for many of you. I feel much better now I've had a moan anyway
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