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greybing

Lake Effect Like Snow

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Is it possible to get lake effect like snow in britain,for example with the warmish seas acting similarly to the great lakes in north america when very cold air travels over them.

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Has been known around the London area... I believe someone posted something about it last year or two.

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yeah,i thought it could happen in britain,though i thought it would have to be pretty rare as you would need really cold air and warmish sea.

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We have also had similar effects from the Irish sea here on the East coast of Ireland in 2008/2009 winter.

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Happens whenever there is a cold, unstable N/NE/E wind in winter - its known as Sea Effect Snow locally. NE England gets its best snow events from these scenarios, such as Jan 2010, Feb 2009, Feb 2005 etc. Usually the snow showers aren't as intense as the lake effect snow squalls in America though, as they rarely drop more than 10-20cm.

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Well, I would have thought the temperature differential is the main thing. It's more the warm sea temps modifying the cold air mass that's the issue. Wikipedia does cite the North Sea effect as a Lake Effect like condition, but we're never gonna get 120" of snow in one storm off of the North Sea like you can off of Lake Ontario in Oswego County (Upstate NY)!

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Well, I would have thought the temperature differential is the main thing. It's more the warm sea temps modifying the cold air mass that's the issue. Wikipedia does cite the North Sea effect as a Lake Effect like condition, but we're never gonna get 120" of snow in one storm off of the North Sea like you can off of Lake Ontario in Oswego County (Upstate NY)!

yes,and presumably because the waters around britain in early winter winter are not that warm and the air is not that generally cold in a cold snap ,the lake effect type events are not so severe,

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We see it frequently around windward coasts whenever we have cold air blowing over comparitively warm seas. Most of last winter's snowfalls in eastern England were of convective origin and caused by this process, with cold airstreams from N, NE and occasionally E generating numerous snow showers over the North Sea. Similarly, the heavy and thundery snow showers across many parts of W Scotland and NW England between 20 and 23 December 2009 were caused by cold airmasses flowing over the north-east Atlantic and the Irish Sea.

I don't think the waters surrounding Britain are any colder than the Great Lakes get but the major difference is that our cold airmasses generally aren't as cold- the "lake effect snows" in the USA and southern Canada often arise due to direct inputs of cold airmasses of the sort that we associate with eastern and northern Russia, and which very rarely approach the British Isles. Therefore Greybing's overall point is right, we just don't get the same extreme contrast between cold air and warm water.

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We see it frequently around windward coasts whenever we have cold air blowing over comparitively warm seas. Most of last winter's snowfalls in eastern England were of convective origin and caused by this process, with cold airstreams from N, NE and occasionally E generating numerous snow showers over the North Sea. Similarly, the heavy and thundery snow showers across many parts of W Scotland and NW England between 20 and 23 December 2009 were caused by cold airmasses flowing over the north-east Atlantic and the Irish Sea.

i can see it i

Yes, when i lived in Essex this was the best source of snow most years - most notably in 87 when we had nearly 18inches (level) snow in the Southend area, much less further inland although very cold and what snow did fall kept blowing around and forming new drifts. The sea is still really quite warm at the moment so it happening again in that area if the temperatures drop as forecast.

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We see it frequently around windward coasts whenever we have cold air blowing over comparitively warm seas. Most of last winter's snowfalls in eastern England were of convective origin and caused by this process, with cold airstreams from N, NE and occasionally E generating numerous snow showers over the North Sea. Similarly, the heavy and thundery snow showers across many parts of W Scotland and NW England between 20 and 23 December 2009 were caused by cold airmasses flowing over the north-east Atlantic and the Irish Sea.

I don't think the waters surrounding Britain are any colder than the Great Lakes get but the major difference is that our cold airmasses generally aren't as cold- the "lake effect snows" in the USA and southern Canada often arise due to direct inputs of cold airmasses of the sort that we associate with eastern and northern Russia, and which very rarely approach the British Isles. Therefore Greybing's overall point is right, we just don't get the same extreme contrast between cold air and warm water.

is it not the case the due to the extreme heat in summer around the great lakes area of north america that those waters would be generally warmer by the time early winter comes on than the sea's around britain at the same time ,considering our comparitively temperate summers,i really have no idea but i thought this may have been the case

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is it not the case the due to the extreme heat in summer around the great lakes area of north america that those waters would be generally warmer by the time early winter comes on than the sea's around britain at the same time ,considering our comparitively temperate summers,i really have no idea but i thought this may have been the case

I would have thought that the Lakes would warm and cool quicker - yes, it may be hot in winter, but it gets cool quickly as well, being in the middle of a continent. The night-time minima are much lower there than here. Also, the Lakes don't have the warming effect of the Thermohaline Conveyor (or Gulf Stream, whatever it's called these days), which moderates our sea temps a bit in winter (I would imagine).

Naturally, I could be talking piffle and am half expecting to be shot down in flames! unsure.gif

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....maybe ill look up a definitive answer,it would be cool to know,oh and thanks to you and whoever else for your input..............p.s.butler son ,love the picture of zac efron,that smilecould not get any more cheesy.

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If you want to see an example of this phenomenon just check out the radar- plenty of late effect like snow is occurring down the eastern side of Britain right now!

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If you want to see an example of this phenomenon just check out the radar- plenty of late effect like snow is occurring down the eastern side of Britain right now!

yes,i know... i think in my initial question i should have been a little more specific,i know that convective snow is not unfamiliar to our eastern shores in winter,indeed it is this which brings some of the heaviest falls but i was wondering if we have had effects similar to those in severity which are commonplace in the great lakes........it would seem the answer is yes,occasionally but generally the temperature contrast which causes the lake effect snow or convective snow is not as great,......shame ,i drool over the snow events thy have in that area of america,buffalo for example.,thanks for input people

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yes,i know... i think in my initial question i should have been a little more specific,i know that convective snow is not unfamiliar to our eastern shores in winter,indeed it is this which brings some of the heaviest falls but i was wondering if we have had effects similar to those in severity which are commonplace in the great lakes........it would seem the answer is yes,occasionally but generally the temperature contrast which causes the lake effect snow or convective snow is not as great,......shame ,i drool over the snow events thy have in that area of america,buffalo for example.,thanks for input people

This snow event has brought nearly 9 inches of snow to Newcastle now, but that still can't compete with getting 2 foot in one night, which buffalo can manage!

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This snow event has brought nearly 9 inches of snow to Newcastle now, but that still can't compete with getting 2 foot in one night, which buffalo can manage!

Looks like you'll catch loads more snow tonight - probably another 5-6 inches looking at the Beeb forecast. Just hoping it slips a little further south!

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Okay, at the moment I'm living in Inverness, HL, Scotland. We get about a good 12 or so inches every year (approx. 32cm). But where I'm moving; Toronto, Canada; the city receives over 55 inches (approx. 140cm) a year. And that's the city centre !!

Lake effect snow over that sea would be possible but probably very uncommon; and usually if the winds are blowing from the north; Holland or France would receive it.

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