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Snow White

January 2013 Cold Spell - How's it been for you ?

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Fair enough, January 2010 (or Dec09/Jan10) was pretty much the best i can hope for my area so anything else and it just feels like chasing the dragon, so to speak. Nov/Dec 2010 was probably consistently colder here than Dec09/Jan10 but both extreme minima and maxima didn't get as low and snow depths were also lower. My main memory of Jan 2010 was wading through deep snow, my main memory of Dec 2010 was slipping on ice. Regardless both periods were far better than this cold spell in my neck of the woods. Feb 2012 was pretty much a non event here.

I've no doubt that this spell has been great for a lot of people, but not here. I saw the snow on BBC news in the North East and i was amazed, some parts have really taken a pasting. Like you say, it depends where you live.

Yes I remember talking to some relatives in the summer of 2010 who live on high ground (above 1000ft) in the north west who said the winter had been a real bad one there. Feb 2012 was also a poor showing here.

Still snowing here in Gateshead and the snow is blowing around making for real wintry conditions. I can't remember the last time we had a real snowy breakdown (we didn't in Jan or Dec 2010) although it may have been 12th March 2006. I suppose it ticks another box for this cold spell.

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I think in view of this cold spell going out with a flourish here (9cm on grassy surfaces and 6cm on concrete) I'll have to upgrade this cold spell to a repectable 8/10- out of a possible 10, roughly 1.2 marks chopped off for lack of sunshine and 0.8 marks chopped off for the fact that there was never more than two inches on the ground here prior to the snow event associated with the breakdown. Otherwise pretty solid stuff, and there's been a good 10+ days of snow cover.

Had I been in Tyneside during the cold spell from 25th Nov-10th Dec 2010 anything less than a straight 10 would have done it a grave injustice, but unfortunately I was in the infamous dry corridor in Norwich during that easterly. However the cold spells that I experienced from 17th Dec 2009 to 9th Jan 2010 and from 18th-26th Dec 2010 were a solid 9.5 as was the late-December 1995 spell.

For some additional perspective I only gave the first half of February 2012 about 4/10 for where I was at the time- so this month's spell whopped that one out of sight.

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Here the biggest snow fall has been from the breakdown.Currently there is acouple of inches underfoot.

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In Edinburgh maybe a 6.5/10, one good snowfall and a lot of slushiness hanging around for the last fortnight with a lack of really cold temperatures. For Freuchie probably 8.5/10, good snowfall midweek and another one today, 16cm (potentially more with this stuff currently falling) apparently on the grass there so the most since January 2011. Lack of sunshine and lack of very cold minima did it in but it was stellar stuff.

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I think in view of this cold spell going out with a flourish here (9cm on grassy surfaces and 6cm on concrete) I'll have to upgrade this cold spell to a repectable 8/10- out of a possible 10, roughly 1.2 marks chopped off for lack of sunshine and 0.8 marks chopped off for the fact that there was never more than two inches on the ground here prior to the snow event associated with the breakdown. Otherwise pretty solid stuff, and there's been a good 10+ days of snow cover.

Had I been in Tyneside during the cold spell from 25th Nov-10th Dec 2010 anything less than a straight 10 would have done it a grave injustice, but unfortunately I was in the infamous dry corridor in Norwich during that easterly. However the cold spells that I experienced from 17th Dec 2009 to 9th Jan 2010 and from 18th-26th Dec 2010 were a solid 9.5 as was the late-December 1995 spell.

For some additional perspective I only gave the first half of February 2012 about 4/10 for where I was at the time- so this month's spell whopped that one out of sight.

Early February 2012 was a 0 here and I don't think anyone would dispute that, temperatures were around 3/4C for the entire time, it was mostly cloudy and there wasn't a single flake of snow.

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It's been really good for us, we had a couple of inches originally and that laid with subzero temps until the big fall last sun/monday which stuck to everything as it was so cold and from that we had roughly half a foot or so which hasn't melted as temps haven't been above freezing up here, and then last night we have about 4 or so inches although coupled with the wind this didn't stick to the trees etc.

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Good really. Got a bit of snow on three days and it was around for a couple after that. Looking forward to more possibilities now.

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Snowfall - been good for here especially last night with a good fall of big chunky flakes. I missed last Fridays event but have been dealing with the ice ever since however!

Temperatures - never especially cold but never not cold either - pretty much -1 to 1c at all times with just the odd dip under brief clear skies.

Cloud/sun levels- excessive cloud cover at almost all times. So this spell although snowier than Dec 2010 looses out in 'goodness' rating as it was constantly dull and lacking in low minima.

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I would rate this cold spell 7/10. It lasted almost two weeks and I had lying snow for a week. Two good snowfalls, one on the 18th and the other the 20th with the former giving four inch accumulations.

Much like others have said, the real downsides were the constant cloudy conditions preventing low night time minima and making for dull daytime conditions. I also had periods of heavy snow on both Tuesday and Wednesday evening (the later not forecast). However, the problem with these was that they were rather wet so the snow didn't accumulate as well as it would have done had the temps and dew points been a bit lower. Also, last night's breakdown was a disappointing down here although I never really expected much from it.

Overall though, especially given the rather medicore synoptics, pretty good really and had we not experienced Jan 10 and Nov/Dec 10 we would have felt rather spoilt I'm sure!

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After last nights fall it's now up to 6.5-7/10 for me, as others said the main downsides to it were the lack of sunshine and the lack of proper locked in deep cold meaning that anything that fell starting thawing pretty quickly but it certainly walks all over last Feb's so called 'cold spell' that is for sure.

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Best cold spell for years here in terms of snowfall. 4 inches with 8 inch drifts on that Friday, smaller snowfalls in between and some of the largest flakes of snow I've ever seen falling last night.

In terms of temperature 09/10 smacks this spell out of the arena. -15C recorded 7th Jan 2010....won't forget that experience in a hurry- that cold was something else.

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Very happy with snowfall here with around 40cm lying in the fields, as CC says nowhere near as cold as 09/10, when it dropped to around -20 here..

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Was a decent cold spell as it lasted nearly 2 weeks with large snow events I was just unlucky and missed out Last week on the Fridays event sunday made up for it though :)

Last year I saw lower temps and more snow but I would pick over this years cold spell.

We still have one month left and it looks good!

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After last night's snowfall, this spell has been upgraded from 'good' to 'great'. Temperatures were tame though. Kind of like Feb 1986 but much weaker.

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Loved this cold and snowy spell in Huntingdonshire, the most snow events since Feb 09.

Friday the 18th to Sun 21st was the best weekend for snow since I moved here in 1993, ok it wasn't deep cold but the snow was dry and very persistent. Due to most of Cambridgeshire being at sea level, this part of East Anglia is on average snowless and dry.

Its amazing what even 50 metres above sea level can do with orthographic lifting and snow, as I have witnessed just up the road from here.

So very pleased overall, Il say 8/10 on a scale of one to ten.

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The snow event yesterday was very reminiscent of Feb '07 here. I have strong memories of that event as I got stranded in it!

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Would rate this winter (so far) as 4th out of the last 5 - which is when we seemed to enter the phase of colder snowier winters.

1st - 2010/1 - average Jan and Feb cannot take away from the 1 in 200 year event that was Dec 2010.

2nd - 2009/2010 - 2 great cold spells with classic build ups.

3rd - 2008/9 - decent cold spell in December and cracking snow event in Feb.

4th - 2012/13 - decent 2 week cold spell with multiple snow events. A decent cold snap in Feb could see 3rd place under threat, but something special needed to threaten 1st or 2nd.

5th - 2011/2 - Disappointing start partially offset by double snow event and 10 days cover in Feb

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Even though I haven't been in Derbyshire for this cold spell, I feel as though I can still rank it amongst the others from best to worst:

November/December 2010 - had everything you'd want from a winter except for extreme drifting, which was provided nicely by the previous January.

December/January 2009-2010

January 2013

<large gap>

February 2009

February 2012

All of which, I should add, beat any other cold spell I've seen before that (but bear in my I don't remember most of the 90's, never mind before that)

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Best since Dec 2010. Not that great though, despite having 6 inches lying for quite a while- the snow became hard and turned to slush after the 22nd, there was no deep cold (no ice days, no sharp frosts) and most importantly no sunshine.

A ESE wind with a layer of low cloud and light to moderate snow characterised this spell, with a few frontal exceptions and the very fun convective days of the 14th/15th and 18th.

Good for snow, but the lack of fresh snow, sunshine and cold made it quite monotonous in the end.

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Overall disappointing sorry.gif for Watford, most of our days were in +values and some of the nights as well - we did get a bit of drifting snow early on and I suppose the net depth before yesterday was some 5 to 7 cms - it was mostly cloudy with only two frosts of any note, the first -2.8C and the other -4.8C.

Didn't get any snow at all from last nights event - it rained here :(

I'd like to make a request that the next time we get something like a scandy high set up for the near continental temps to be a bit colder, say about -8C max for Amsterdam - this would allow for a bit of warming of the air across the North Sea but still reaching us comfortably sub zero good.gif . In addition if would like dry air with low dew points but still able to get the best out of the low wending its way up the channel with a deposit of say 25 cms of powdery snow drifting nicely in an easterly wind to be followed by lovely clear skies and sunshine - I'm not really asking for much - am I? whistling.gif

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I had 4" of snow here which for south east london is good so I'm happy. Having lived in SE London since '62 I've seen a lot of winters and as gas is so high now I'm pleased to see just a little snow with out it going on and on these days.

Those that hark back to times of heavier snow have either not experienced them before or have more money than me to spend heating my home.

Oh yes I did and I still love 'em :)

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Best since Dec 2010. Not that great though, despite having 6 inches lying for quite a while- the snow became hard and turned to slush after the 22nd, there was no deep cold (no ice days, no sharp frosts) and most importantly no sunshine.

Pretty sure Derbyshire had 8 or 9 consecutive ice days while Glasgow had 0. There was certainly sunshine here though and when the forecast looks like this I particularly crave the cold to come back.

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Not bad overall, I'll give it a 5.5 out of 10, up until yesterday I was only going to rate it 3.5 out of 10 due to the lack of snowfall.

It could have been much better had the front which was progged to hit us last Friday made it this way. Highlight was yesterday - 8 inches of snow from one snowfall, which is the highest single fall of snow we have seen for a long long time - though cumulatively we had more on the ground in December 2010.

Dissapointing aspects - far too much cloud preventing low minima, indeed most nights hovered around the 0 degree mark and there has been no visible frost, so a number of days have not appeared very wintry despite the cold temperatures.

The non-event of Friday 18th was also exceptionally dissapointing, we managed a few flurries at best. Due to lack of heavy snowfall we only experienced a couple of mornings with snow cover, again had we seen at least a couple of inches last Friday, then the tally would have ratcheted up markedly easily beating last Feb when we managed about 10 mornings on the trot.

In terms of snowfall here is the pattern of events -

12th Jan - which for me marked the start of the cold spell was a fine bright day with early sharp frost and one snow shower later on.

13th Jan - 3cms of snow in the evening from a 7 hour spell of very fine light snow

14 Jan - awoke to snow cover and further light snow giving another cm or two, evening delivered an air frost

15 Jan - A dry day and some sunshine, clear skies evening very early air frost, probably the coldest night of the fortnight, but only down to about -4 degrees, nothing special.

16 Jan- An ice day and dry but no frost how odd!

17 Jan - A dry day with all traces of snow gone

18 Jan - a handful of snow flurries exceptionally dissapointing, temps hovering around 0 degrees but no frost

19 Jan - snow flurries all day, leaving a very very light dusting

20 Jan - mostly dry with a cold wind, temps up to 2 degrees

21 Jan - A cm or two of fairy dust snow in the evening, temps down to freezing but no frost again!

22 Jan - more flurries but not enough for a cover, no frost

23 Jan - dry day no frost very cloudy

24 Jan - As 23 Jan, no snow to look at only on higher ground

25 Jan - 8 inches of snow, heavy snow from lunchtime until midnight

26 Jan - end of cold spell but some welcome sunshine, rapid thaw by evening with heavy rain.

In many respects this spell has been quite similiar to Feb 09 in terms of temperatures and snowfall, the SW I remember was badly hit in Feb 09 as well.

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I'm afraid you're going to be out of luck.

The predicted cold spell mid February has now been dowengraded and no mention of it at all on any of the further outlook models.

I think winter is all but over if the current models are to be believed.

That was the SSW that was.

Roll on 2013/14.

Perhaps looking at a brief cold spell about 08.02.2013 with a greenie high and a scandi low bringing us into a N to NNE air stream :)

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A good cold spell in this part of the world. 9 consecutive 'ice days' from the 16th-24th was the longest spell since 11 days from Jan' 23rd-Feb 2nd 1996 ; even December 2010 only managed a spell of 8.

48.5 cm of snowfall in total makes it the snowiest January since 1986 and 38cm of undrifted snow shortly after midnight last night was the greatest depth in January since 1987; the fall of 20cm yesterday was also the largest single fall in January since 1987.

What a shame the weather couldn't have stayed cold so that tonight's rainfall could have added another 12cm or so of snow.

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