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mike Meehan

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Everything posted by mike Meehan

  1. The slating of the roads is only effective down to a particular temperature - can't remember what it is now but I do recall in my youth walking over salt pavements where the gri/salt just has not had any effect. For the others who have not, or rarely seen dry powder snow blowing in the wind, one of the advantages of having been in 1942. I recall my step-father driving the family car over the Lincolnshire Wolds from the Midlands. The snow did not start until we got to Lincoln, then it started down in flakes the size of half crowns. As we got to the other side the snow was piled at the sides of the roads to a height of about 6 feet in places, obviously as a result of the snow plough going through. Also the snow was being blown in the wind to the extent that the vis was only about a hundred metres at times. A few miles further on the road was well and truly blocked and we could not make any further progress. We had to abandon the car and sought refuge in a farm labourers cottage to be joined by others in a similar plight. We were stuck there for three days before we could get out getting a lift in a break down lorry and had to leave the car because the cylinder block had frozen and buggered it. The country side was littered with downed cables and some of the telegraph poles had been snapped like match stalks. By that were a brama of a storm, yer tell 'm now and they won't believe yer. Sadly two or three days after we got back home it started melting. There have been a number of memorable blizzards since and by that I mean proper blizzards, though not every year.
  2. According to the radar only about 25% of that dollop has passed over so far, so I would guestimate, say another 3 to 4 hours for Watford. As far as the depth is concerned it is difficult to measure because the drifting but I would reckon about a couple cc so far. The road outside is the main A41 but that is starting to develop a white patch in the centre.
  3. Looking at the radar there is a dollop of snow extending from the south Essex coast in the region of Malden and had just reached Watford by about 2130, although there had been some previous light falls. This looks like being persistent - it is not exceptionally heavy, 'cos the vis is a little over half a mile but over a period of a few hours it should build up depth to few centimetres give Watford a more respectable covering. Meanwhile the current temp is -5.1C and snow is getting blown about be the wind, so we may end up with some mini drifts. I think snow drifts are one of the best aspects, especially when you get powder snow and marvel at the different formations. It reminds me of when I was on night duty once when in plod, I took a car out to te villages in the Chilterns. There was an area when the land fell away to the east and the road was exposed from the east building some great little drifts about a foot to 18 inches deep. I kept the car going at a steady 40 mph, powering through these drifts - there was no problem with traction with it being dry powder snow. I had the sensation similar to that of a destroyer battling through heavy seas which were breaking over the prow - it was exactly like that only the snow was flying over the bonnet of the car. It were great, I thoroughly enjoyed that - however not thinking of going for a drive tonight - I was much younger then.
  4. Positively balmy at Watford with the temp as high as -3.4C as I type. Still getting a few flurries from time to time
  5. It does look as though it is the turn of North of the Thames today - we've just had a fairly moderate snow shower with more in the offing - temp currently -1.6C at Watford.
  6. It's just reaching us at Watford as I type, now clouded over after a blue start to the day, though we did get a covering through the night and it all looked white, though not deep, probably about 40 mm - the min was -5C and the temp is now -0.8C. I note that the forecasts are now delaying the start of the thaw by about a day - these situations can be problematic.
  7. No, it can never be too cold to settle but when it is very dry snow does sublimate i.e. ice changing from a solid to a gaseous state without the intervening state of being a liquid. As it happens I see the cu is now building up more, the temp is now +1 C , however the radar shows showery activity over Holland and the North Sea heading in our direction.
  8. Exactly - don't remember much of '47, the other really cold winter but understand th difference was more of a Greenie high set up, rather than a Scandy one. That year the cold and snow did not really set in until the end of Jan but lasted until April - the comparison between that year and '63 is quite interesting because overall there was more snow, with some considerable depths being recorded and less sunshine in '47.
  9. No more than an incomplete dusting at Watford with no real fresh snow overnight - the small bits we have are in the process of sublimating or melting in the sun. Now have a temp of zero, slighty more humid today at 68% - steadily decreasing pressure - see NW have promised us some for this afternoon and see the wind is changing to a more easterly quadrant, so we may benefit from a Thames streamer but don't really want the temp to rise much higher, otherwise we will get wet stuff instead of powder, Was thinking back and a number of times circa 20 years ago we get maxes of -5C around here, though the beast from the east has been modified by comparatively warmer temps, though it has come later in the season this time.
  10. Whereas this morning we only had some slight flurries at Watford hardly showing the ground, this afternoon we have had more organised showers a little heavier to the extent the whiteness is beginning to show, though the wind is blowing the snow clear in more exposed areas - temps have just dropped below freezing as I type to -0.1C but humidity increased to 75%. Now just turned to -0.2 C with 76%. It looks like a number of further showers on the radar coming our way and if the forecast runs true to form I would expect a respectable accumulation during the next 24 hours. The advantage of it being below freezing is a specific amount of precipitation can lead to greater depths. Wondering about the weekend and if snow does get firmly established, the fronts forecasted to come through to give milder weather may get delayed, or even held at bay. Warm air can find it difficult to dislodge a settled cold air mass, though it will depend on the energy pushing it along. This happened a few times during 1963 and the cold air did not get really dislodged until March after something like about 68 ice days with just a brief interlude in January when the temp reached a balmy +4C for a short while. The end finally came by an onslaught of the Atlantic from the North West. I've been waiting for a repeat performance of that winter ever since but sadly to no avail - usually after a promising couple of weeks or so the cold has in fact been pushed out of the way. Now -0.3C
  11. Now here's a thought - people can dream of having the need to get these over here. https://www.facebook.com/iwantthatvideos/videos/534133900305863/
  12. Eurika! - just get the odd few flakes coming down, not sufficient to cover the ground - temp -1.2C. 68% humidity.
  13. Looks like an interesting week coming up - the lucky ones in the east can probably look forward to streamers from off the channel and the North Sea, which often give rise to an unpredictable amount of snow in some areas. Sometimes I have seen the forecasters caught out when the amount exceeds expectations but the conditions have to be just right for this. In my case being at Watford I am in hopes of a Thames Streamer but it depends a lot on wind direction to gain the full benefit and it can make the difference between just a covering and several inches. We will see what we will see. Should it happen hoping for the powdery stuff, but it needs the temps to stay below freezing As it is a beautiful blue sky today - temp 3.2C with a 55% humidity.
  14. Cheddar man lived some 10,000 years ago, the ice caps still covered part of the UK, though they were receding and the UK was still attached to continental Europe via 'Doggerland'. This, I would venture to say would have given us a cross between a maritime and a continental climate. Not too far to the north tundra would still have existed but I would imagine that by the time Cheddar man and his forebears reached the Cheddar Gorge forests have started to re-establish, otherwise the area would not have been so attractive. Personally I would have expected much colder winters than we have now with snow for most of the winter season but depending very much on the wind directions, with the northerly and easterlies bring more snow, whilst the southerlies and westerlies bringing milder conditions bringing intermittent thaws. I would have expected that in the summer there would have been quite a difference in temperatures, again depending on the wind direction with the warmest conditions coming from the continental south east. One thing of which I am not quite sure is whether at that time there would have been sufficient melting to decrease the salinity of the north Atlantic, thereby slowing the Gulf stream but there again I have no reason to think that Cheddar man was stupid, so if the climate were to be too onerous, I doubt that he would have settled in that area. Just wondering what thoughts people had in relation to this.
  15. The chart of Catacol for the same date shows a different set up to mine, (preceding post) though a similar set of circumstances but it is an example of how the models can vary.
  16. Looking forward to 28.02.2018 there is an interesting feature of the Scandy stretching over as far as Greenland. With quite respectable uppers as well. Something which I think is a relatively rare, a contraflow jet stream over the UK with SSE over Scotland Though not exceptionally cold considering the chart - we would have done with a similar set up a couple of months ago. Yet it appears that snow is forecast - still another 10 days to go and many a slip twixt cup and lip!
  17. A Welsh farmer drove to a neighbours farmhouse and knocked at the door. A boy, about 9, opened the door. “Is your dad or your mum home?” said the farmer. “No, they went to town.” “How about your brother, Howard? Is he here?” “No, he went with Mum and Dad.” The farmer stood there for a few minutes, shifting from one foot to the other, and mumbling to himself. “I know where all the tools are, if you want to borrow one, or I can give dad a message.” said the boy. “Well,” said the farmer uncomfortably, “I really wanted to talk to your Dad. It’s about your brother, Howard, getting my daughter Susie pregnant”. The boy thought for a moment… “You would have to talk to Dad about that. I know he charges £500 for the bull and £50 for the pig, but I don’t know how much he charges for Howard.”
  18. During the winter I keep an eye on what is happening in Russia and eastern Europe in the winter months hoping that some will be shared with us and over the years a max of -18C at Moscow has been fairly common. I have not seen anything like that for this season, in fact quite a few days during the earlier part have been above freezing and most of the cold days have not really been much worse than we have had in the UK during some of our colder spells, particularly 1963. Is this perhaps one of the mildest winters on record so far for that part of the world?
  19. Isn't this really what we need for the summer months - the problem with this winter is that the HP's have been in the wrong place.
  20. Some tweets relating to snow above 300 metres in Herault in the South of France: https://twitter.com/MeteoHerault
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