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Leo97t

Best and worst winters

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I don't really remember 1981-82, other than that it was very cold and snowy, so I can't justify including it. But 2017-18 might actually be close to the top for me. Although Jan and Feb were a bit meh, the winter was bookended by some glorious winter weather. December brought me 28 cm of lying snow, 23 cm of it falling in one day, both records beating those set in 1990-91. Then March's Beast and Son of Beast produced some ferocious cold, a bit of drifting and lovely dry snow. Hard for me to complain there!

2010-11 might be second purely for the exceptional weather in Nov and Dec, including the River Severn freezing over in town for the first time since 1963. Also for some stunning rime on trees on a sunny day with a max of -3 °C. Shame it was so poor after early January. 1990-91 is up there as you'd expect, though my 16 hours without power during/after a blizzard is more fun to look back on now than it was at the time! 2009-10 has a shot for bringing some beautiful days in Jan 2010 with full snow cover and blazing sunshine that didn't melt it.

Worst winter? Well, most of them in the early 21st century, quite frankly. I have a particular sore spot for Feb/Mar 2005, when we had easterlies for days, which every single time brought a dusting at best that turned to slush after an hour or two. Not one single snowfall worth the name. That was almost worse than the ultra-mild winters.

Edited by Arctic Hare

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On 09/10/2018 at 20:31, Philipsfd said:

What made 2000-01 so much better than the following year? There was the snowy spell between Christmas and New Year, but other than that I seem to remember mainly mild weather. Can remember a lot of sunny weather in February and a sunny and cold spell in early March.

At least January and February 2001 were more seasonable than January and February 2002 although the first third of January 2002 was seasonable. The second half of winter 2001-02 was a disaster for cold, snow lovers and a godsend who like stormy, gales and very mild weather.

And the northern Irish and Scottish folk will remember winter of 2000-01 well because of the big snow events that hit their countries or at least part of it.

January 2001 CET: 3.2C  February 2001 CET: 4.4C

January 2002 CET: 5.5C. February 2002 CET: 7.0C   16th January-14th February 2002 CET: 8.0C!

Manchester Winter indices

2000-01: 72

2001-02: 50

Late February 2001

1st February 2002 (typical of the second half of that winter

 

Edited by Weather-history

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01-02 was such an odd winter. Just when the Atlantic normally starts to dwindle, it fired up and the quietest winter month ended up being the stormiest! Thankfully not a common occurrence.

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On ‎11‎/‎10‎/‎2018 at 19:29, carinthian said:

During my time in Blighty :

1. 1962/63...by far the best for prolonged snow cover and days of sub zero temps ( probably once in a lifetime winter experience)

2.1978/79.. especially February for bitter winds and blowing snow.

3.1968/69..especially February for Polar Lows and deep snow cover, especially in the Northwest.

To many mild winters to list...

C

Dug this chart out early Feb 1969 ( re above ) -15c 850mb temps over Northern England during the passage of a Polar Low. 19 inches of snow fell in parts of East Cheshire between 9am -6pm . Remember being sent home early from College and looking at the temperature on the farm thermometer my dad had , it read 21f at 5pm just after the clearance of the Polar Low. Wind got up between 5pm and 7pm and created 3 feet snow drifts around the farm and then fell flat calm. A magic day

NOAA_1_1969020718_2.png

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Best:

1990-91 - My memories are the famous February being off school for two weeks and walking down a hill with my Mum and sister in the thick snow to buy some jigsaw book from the local shop.

1995-96 - The snowy February

1996-97 - Mainly for the unexpected snow in November, and the dumping we had after Christmas.

2000-01 - A White Christmas almost and it was bitter most of the time.

2008-09 - The dusting after the New Year, and the snowfalls in early Feb.

2009-10 - Say no more. Easily the best winter I've ever experienced.

2010-11 - December was magic...but the rest was meh.

2012-13 - The first winter in North Somerset. Snow in January and some in March. Very bitter.

2017-18 - OK it wasn't marvellous, but there were bitter periods and the Beast from The East.

Worst:

2002-03 - Forgettable, bar snow in early Feb. 

2006-07 - Mild, bar a bit of snow in February

2013-14 - Rain, Wind, Rain, Wind, Rain, Wind

2014-15 - Forgettable

2015-16 - Rubbish with stupid temperatures.

2016-17 - A mix of the three that proceeded it with only some real cold in January, and the last week of November / early December.

 

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Very similar opinions to you nn2013, the only difference being:

2002/3 was one of few Decembers that brought snow here early on, on the 10th. The wintry spell from 3rd-12th January was notably cold if mainly snowless. I remember snow showers later in the month and February was often cold and frosty but again snowless. The worst part of that winter for me was the grey wet mild Christmas and New Year period.

2014/15 was one of the better predominantly Atlantic winters. It was sunnier than average and second half of Jan and first of Feb at least brought plentiful frost and a brief snowfall on the 14th Jan. Otherwise fairly unremarkable,

 

I will always rate 09/10 as the best in my lifetime, closely followed by Dec 2010 as a month and 08/09 overall as a winter. I can just about remember 96/97 and think I would've liked 95/96 despite January's dullness. I actually also think that if we'd had December 2017, then Feb-Mar 2018 a month earlier, it would've been up there in the top 5.

2015/16, 2013/14, 2007/8, 2006/7, 2001/2, 1999/2000, 1998/99 and 1997/98 are definitely the worst in my 'remembered lifetime' (I was born in 1992).

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Best:

 

1) 2009-10

2) 1995-96

3) 1986-87

4) 1990-91

5) 2012-13

 

Worst:

 

1) 2013-14

2) 2015-16

3) 1988-89

4) 1999-2000

5) 1997-98

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For my lifetime I would have to go with best:

1962/3.

1967/68 to 1969/70

All Winters from 1976/77 to 86/87. Special mention to Winter 78/9 for 75 days lying snow and to Jan 1978 and Jan 1984 for the deepest snow.

1995/6 especially for the great Christmas blizzard and the freeze that followed.

2000/1 for the snowy February.

2005/6. A disappointing but cool winter with a snowy March. Funnily enough that Winter had the fewest snow lying days in my lifetime in my home area in the Central Highlands with most of them being in March.

2009/10. An extended Winter with snow lying well into March in my home area. 95 days with snow lying thumped the 75 days in 1979. Even here in Dundee we had 30 days with snow lying which was the most since 1986.

2010/11. Deep snow with 50 + days lying here in Dundee from late Nov to mid Jan.  Most since 1963.

2012/13. Good snowfalls spread over the winter. Best in January and March. Unlike 2010 though a bit of altitude was needed for the best snow with around 45cms lying in the NW of the city.

Worst were mostly more recently. 2001/2, 2006/7 and 2012/13 come to mind. Also 1988/9 and 1998/9 further back. 1974/5 would have been there but for the snowy and cold Spring.

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Worst decade for snowless Decembers the 80`s and known for being mostly mild a wet.

 

Edited by Snowyowl9

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Overall winter 09/10 best for me - consistent cold from the 10th December onwards, long run of days with snow lying, despite no especially large falls. 

Winter 95/96 a close second, December was excellent, with a 7 day run of ice days from 24th, again no large snowfall totals, and there was some mild weather in the immediate run up to christmas and the first few days. January salvaged by a very cold snowy period 21st onwards. February brought 18 inches of snow, and persistant cold weather though a rapid thaw set in around the 9th.

Enjoyed winter 08/09 very episodic, cold start, mild run up to christmas, then very cold last week, first 10 days Jan, average remainder Jan, cold first half Feb, very mild second half. Reason I enjoyed it was because it came on the back of a very long run of average/mild or very mild winters since 96/97, only 00/01 felt like a proper winter, 01/02 fizzled in the new year - an odd one that!, 05/06 promised much but never really delivered, and 04/05 brought cold easterlies far too late, and they were half-baked.

I don't recall the winters before 87/88 that well, but do remember quite a bit of cold snowy weather at times mid 80s.

Winter 12/13 was preety decent overall, last winter not bad, at least it felt like winter.

We've had some shockers recently,notably 06/07, 07/08, 13/14- the worse!, 15/16 - not far behind.

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On 09/12/2018 at 05:58, Snowyowl9 said:

Worst decade for snowless Decembers the 80`s and known for being mostly mild a wet.

 

what about Dec 81?  exceptionally snowy

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12 minutes ago, cheeky_monkey said:

what about Dec 81?  exceptionally snowy

1981 was the odd one out.

Decembers between 1979 until 1989 were mild or very mild.

1980 was average to mild.

1983, 87, 88 and 89 were all very mild Decembers.

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On ‎10‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 16:18, cheeky_monkey said:

what about Dec 81?  exceptionally snowy

Record breaking cold yes but December 2010 was snowier.

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3 hours ago, Snowyowl9 said:

Record breaking cold yes but December 2010 was snowier.

81 was still a classic. Jan 1982 was also quite cold.

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Best - 2010/11. An honorary mention for 09/10 and 95/96 but this winter delivered the goods in the month leading up to Christmas. Shame about February but I'm still waiting for a truly "classic" British winter in my lifetime.

Worst - 2015/16. 13/14 came close for its almost total dearth of wintriness but 15/16 takes the wooden spoon for its absolutely putrid run-up to Christmas (like the evil twin of 2010) with nothing as a consolation in the second half of winter. As I recall we eventually got some winds from the north and the east but the first half of winter had been so atrociously mild that it made virtually no dent at all in the temperatures - and conversely any time the winds veered south of west we ended up with temperatures in the high teens. How vile. I think I need a lie-down after typing that.

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On ‎11‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 21:44, Sunny76 said:

81 was still a classic. Jan 1982 was also quite cold.

1981 was certainly a classic especially when the weatherman couldn`t find a -20c symbol to go on the map,first time in living memory for anybody who`s lived upto 100 years old on here. 

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On 11/12/2018 at 21:44, Sunny76 said:

81 was still a classic. Jan 1982 was also quite cold.

Quite cold. The equal lowest ever temperature recorded in the UK was in Jan 1982.

-27.2C at Braemar, Aberdeenshire.

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Somebody in another thread mentioned that winter 2008-09 was arguably their least snowiest winter. I almost fell out of the chair when I saw that, considering when you put it up  against winter 2013-14!

I saw more snow in this video clip from 2nd February 2009 than fell during the whole of  the season of 2013-14!

 

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Indeed, it was a decent winter overall. Didn't some places get snow in December, as well as in late autumn? So an extended winter season.

Of note was the cold first half of December, the long frosty spell from Christmas until January 11th then of course the snowy spell in the first third of February. Even the Atlantic spell in January was of the colder variety with snow in the showers on the 20th here. Feb 2009 is the only time I know of in my lifetime where there has been more than one channel low, in winter, in one week.

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20 minutes ago, MP-R said:

Indeed, it was a decent winter overall. Didn't some places get snow in December, as well as in late autumn? So an extended winter season.

Of note was the cold first half of December, the long frosty spell from Christmas until January 11th then of course the snowy spell in the first third of February. Even the Atlantic spell in January was of the colder variety with snow in the showers on the 20th here. Feb 2009 is the only time I know of in my lifetime where there has been more than one channel low, in winter, in one week.

Yup I remember being in Northampton during early February 2009 and each of those low pressure systems delivered snow events from start to finish. The deepest snow cover I have seen in the UK!

I was especially unlucky in December 2010 though. I was in Northampton for the first half when Hull got buried. Then I went back home to Hull for Christmas in the second half when Northampton got a load of snow! It was just cold and dry in Hull with a bit of snow left over in some spots from earlier in the month.

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26 minutes ago, MP-R said:

Indeed, it was a decent winter overall. Didn't some places get snow in December, as well as in late autumn? So an extended winter season.

Of note was the cold first half of December, the long frosty spell from Christmas until January 11th then of course the snowy spell in the first third of February. Even the Atlantic spell in January was of the colder variety with snow in the showers on the 20th here. Feb 2009 is the only time I know of in my lifetime where there has been more than one channel low, in winter, in one week.

Yes there was, late October and late November and heavy wet snow in early March 2009  for parts of SW England. 

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Unsurprisingly most winters since 2000 do not make my lists because they were redeemed even if otherwise unspectacular but here are those who offend me and those I think of fondly..

Worst

1) Autumn 2014 - Not a single day of lying snow means that I refuse to even acknowledge this as a winter.

2) Winter 2002 - A very poor affair

3) Winters 2008 and 2019 - Both of these were very poor for snow however the west of the UK faired actually pretty well. While poor for snow here both of these until late Feb could have actually been far worse for temperatures, they at least felt cool for long periods.

Winter 2007 gets a mention for being pretty horrific but was saved by two fronts in Feb.

 

Best

1) Winter 2010 - Utter perfection. A maximum depth of 29cm and snow on the ground for 30 days. A winter that actually lasted three months.

2) Winter 2011 - What a December! It was like living in the Arctic with sunshine and permafrost. 

3) Winter 2009 - Frequent snow events, a great winter.

4) Winter 2013 - The late Jan period would have got on this list in its own right with some of the best frontal events seen but to culminate with March even if dull was exceptional.

5) Winter 2018 - Although the bulk of the winter was unremarkable in the north the late Feb spell was utterly fantastic as was the windchill. 

Winter 2006 gets a mention for being incredibly frosty, sunny and dry however we narrowly avoided severe cold and snow.

 

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Posted (edited)

Last winter wasn't a winter imo. A total disaster of a winter from start to finish. The second half of Jan did feel more winter like but that part was still very meh at best. Dec was a disaster ,what a horrid dull mild cloudy depressing month, but many of us held onto the hope that the ssw at the end of the month would deliver at some point. Well of course the way things happened it didn't deliver which felt like a kick in the teeth. That weekend in Jan when the models just flipped was hard to take. It was a winter of being led up the garden path . Then the warm spell in Feb was the final insult.

Edited by sundog

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3 hours ago, Weather-history said:

Somebody in another thread mentioned that winter 2008-09 was arguably their least snowiest winter. I almost fell out of the chair when I saw that, considering when you put it up  against winter 2013-14!

I saw more snow in this video clip from 2nd February 2009 than fell during the whole of  the season of 2013-14!

 

Snowing in Manchester city centre about 9 miles to my east on the 2nd February 2009

 

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