Much of Europe has had one of the mildest Autumns for many years following on the theme from the hot summer.
And the positive news is that the latest model guidance suggests this pattern is set to continue for the next two to three weeks with a large area of high pressure over Europe pumping mild air from Northern Africa through Spain, France and the UK.
Of course at this time of year it wont quite be BBQ weather however it will certainly be a welcome spell for those looking to save on the heating bills.
Unfortunately this will not come as good news to all. Ski resorts across the Alps are reporting nearly no snowfall except at the highest resorts and with opening dates just a few weeks away many are keeping fingers crossed the current pattern will break sooner rather than later.
There was a time when we had 4 seasons however 2018 has done its best to buck that trend.
Having had the Beast from the East parts 1 and 2 during March the UK quickly went straight into summer with hot weather in April.
This of course went on throughout the summer which was the warmest on record.
These good conditions have also lasted for a large part in Autumn however thats about to change.
Next week we will see an Arctic outbreak spread all the way to the South coast by Friday with a particular risk of snowfall down the western side of Scotland, England and Wales. Whilst no major snowfall is currently expected there could be snow showers in quite a few areas.
We are also at risk of some severe frosts especially in Scotland with temperatures as low as -6c.
We will have further updates on the areas at risk of snow as we get into next week.
The UK has been enjoying a rather mild Autumn so far however it looks as though the UK is about to be plunged straight into winter.
As we go through the next couple of weeks the weather will be dominated by a large area of high pressure sat over the UK bringing fine days and frosty nights.
As we near the end of the month and into early November this high pressure looks set to move towards Scandinavia drawing in an bitterly cold Easterly air flow and of course a risk of heavy Snow once again.
At this stage there is still scope for change however its a weather pattern that could bring significant risks across the whole of the UK as it did earlier in the year. That spell of Easterly winds was responsible for the deaths of 17 people in the UK and 77 across Europe in total.
Despite the risks there is plenty of time for change and therefor there is alot of uncertainty. We will update you as/if the risks increase.
NOAA’s Climate prediction centre announce a 75% chance of an El Nino winter this year and whilst it is not expected to be the strongest ever seen it will still effect the weather we see.
In summary El Niño is the warm phase of the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO), stretching along the equator across the Pacific Ocean. It is known to trigger intense weather patterns across the world.
Typically El nino winters will lead to colder weather towards the Gulf states of the U.S whilst being milder than usual in the North West of the country. Higher than usual precipitation can tend to give way to potentially record breaking snowfalls later in the season.
For the UK and the North West of Europe El Nino winters tend to be colder than average which will of course increase the likelihood of snowfall events. Whilst individual snowfall events look likely this winter they will almost certainly be interspersed between milder spells due to the temperate climate of the UK. So those hoping them headlines of ‘4 months of crippling snow’ would be true are likely to be dissapointed.
Other factors to consider for the UK also point to a colder winter:
At present the current solar cycle is the 24th. Solar cycle 24 is currently on pace to be the weakest sunspot cycle with the fewest sunspots since cycle 14 in February 1906.
2018 is also running close to the lowest sea ice extent in the Arctic ever for this time of year. This increase in fresh water has been linked with a slow down in the Gulf stream and an increase in Northern Latitude blocking.