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Let's encourage winter sports in Scotland just before it turns out to be the most snowless winter!

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Original thread was archived but I wanted to add a letter written about this winter

The winter of 1931-32 was virtually snowless

December 1931: Generally anticyclonic and mild with a little snow from a northerly at the end of the month.

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January 1932 was a very mild month wth a CET of 6.3. The weather pattern was set in stone through the month with high pressure to the southeast and low pressure to the northwest and the UK in a mild southwesterly flow. Only on the 7th was there with a wind with a notable northerly component. This resulted in a mild month with few frosts and little snow. On the 18th, in Morayshire, a maximum of 16.1C was recorded due to the Fohn effect also 15.6C at Llandudno.

The night of the 2nd/3rd January was exceptionally mild

Minima

12.8C at Chester and Liverpool

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February 1932 was a generally cold and very anticyclonic month. As a result of the anticyclonic conditions, it was an exceptionally dry month.

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December 1931

CET: 5.3 (+0.8]

January 1932

CET: 6.3 (+2.1)

2th-6th: 9.9

16th-20th: 9.6

February 1932

CET 2.9 (-1.3)

8th-21st: 1.4

February is the 3rd driest February on record with just 8.9mm for England and Wales.

For Scotland and Northern Ireland, February is the driest February in the Areal series for both countries.

Not surprisingly, the winter of 1931-32 was virtually snowless

Stornoway recorded only 3 days of falling snow in the whole of the winter months. Thats how bad winter 1931-32 was for snow.

Pressure anomalies and means for February 1932

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The mean pressure reading for February 1932

Malin Head: 1035.4mb (+25.7mb)

Stornoway: 1034.8mb (+27.0mb)

Pretty remarkable figures.

Seathwaite, normally, a wet place recorded no rainfall during the month.

A letter by the Reverend Dansey of Hereford from 1st March 1932

"Last autumn the press made laudable efforts to encourage winter sports in Scotland. There was "every sign of a hard winter"; so said the writers. But the weather took exception to these marks. Owing to the intense anticylonic conditions since mid January and the exceptional mildness preceding them, Scotland seems to have had the most snowless winter on record. Mr Seton Gordon, writing from Skye on February 9th, said that there was no snow at all on the Cullins or the higher Rossshire hills at 3500ft. Such a state of things must be unprecedented in living memory. At the end of February, Ben Nevis had only a slight coating on its upper 500ft, instead of a normal 6ft, extending down to 1000ft or so above sea level. The Fort William rainfall in February was only 0.14in, which must be a record for any month at that wet station. All the Scottish salmon rivers are at a low summer level and prospects hopeless at the time of writing since there are no vast accumulations of snow on the hills to keep up their level through the early summer as is invariably the case."

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I can un-archive and merge the two if you'd like?

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Looking at weather summaries and the charts for winter 1931-32, it was devoid of any snow for most parts of the country, although I gather that there was a little snow in a few places around the 29th / 30th Dec 1931, and also from around February 10th - 12th I believe there was some slight snowfall, though on both occasions, amounts were small.

 

Certainly the winter of 1991-92 ranks up there with 1931-32 as being virtually snowless for most parts of the country.

 

I also think that winters 1988-89, 1989-90, 1999-2000 were virtually snowless for most of the UK too.  2007-08 saw hardly any snow in the winter quarter although a number of places saw some decent falls in the spring.  2001-02 also saw hardly any snow for most of the country I believe.

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It would seem that there was still enough snow in the Cairngorms that winter for snow to survive from the winter of 1931/1932 right through to the winter of 1932/33 at the Garbh Coire Mor of Braeriach (the most persistent snow site in the British Isles).  However, in the autumn of 1933 all snow in this corrie melted for the first time in living memory (indeed, the first ever recorded time).  Since then, it has also melted in the autumns of 1959, 1996, 2003 & 2006.

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I also think that winters 1988-89, 1989-90, 1999-2000 were virtually snowless for most of the UK too.  2007-08 saw hardly any snow in the winter quarter although a number of places saw some decent falls in the spring.  2001-02 also saw hardly any snow for most of the country I believe.

 

The winter of 1931/32 was more extreme for its lack of snow in Scotland than further south, while the reverse was true in the winters of 1988/89, 1989/90, 1999/00, 2001/02 and 2007/08.  Kevin mentioned that Stornoway had only 3 days of sleet/snow falling in the winter quarter of 1931/32- this compares with 30 days during the winter quarter of 1999/00.

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