Warming up but with a sting in the tail!

January 24, 2013 — Leave a comment

Update@Fri 4.45pm: main fronts making slower progress from the west: JUST rain arriving Reigate later this evening, some heavy, overnight. Blustery tomorrow, still feeling cold until after more rain overnight Sunday. Rain cleared off 7am Sat.

Weather fiends will be fixed on the big change afoot from Polar easterlies to warm Atlantic westerlies taking place this weekend. The change is best illustrated by early morning temperatures in Reigate like this…
Friday 6am: -4°C
Saturday 6am +2°C
Sunday 6am +9°C (warm!)
The first of many fronts and storms marking the gradual transition between cold polar and warm tropical air will arrive in Reigate on Friday afternoon / evening  around 6pm as the HIGH pressure is quickly pushed off into Europe with gradually increasing southerly winds which could be gusting 25mph+ for a while overnight. Heavy precipitation overnight Friday could be sleet, or snow or rain and probably a mix of all three at times: it’s a very close call! Temperatures will hover around 1 or 2°C, rising slightly towards midnight and then falling slightly by dawn on Saturday.  There is the added complexity of a little sister LOW developing on the southern end of the trough in the Channel (see map). This baby sister could develop and be responsible for heavier precipitation and a subtle shift of wind overnight in the SE to a more easterly flow which might push temperatures down just enough for us to wake up to significant snowfall early Saturday morning: a final sting in the tail! Saturday could have an amazingly snowy start if this sister low kicks in. Anyhow, despite a chilly start Saturday temperatures will rise to 5°C and see a thaw of any remaining snow. Heavy rain is expected overnight Saturday to Sunday as a big classic Atlantic depression with warm and cold fronts sweep through. Properly breezy westerly winds on Sunday which will bring in increasingly mild Atlantic air which we haven’t experienced for a good while: feel the atmosphere and light change! Temperatures could rise to a balmy 11°C this week in a weather pattern called a “Blowtorch”. More on this later.  Longer term we are expecting a return to wintry weather in early February: winter may not be over yet!

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