The author: Dr. Donald Perkins at the weather station but, sometimes, on expedition.

Llansadwrn (Anglesey) Weather

Latest Diary

Logo: Llansadwrn Weather - Melin Llynnon, Ynys Môn

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Times are GMT (UTC, Z). Observations at this station [ ] are 24-h 09-09 GMT, some others { } occasionally refer to other 24-h periods, extremes (first indications) are given in bold and are usually 21-21 GMT. When averages are referred to (.) compares with the last decade and [.] with the new 30-y climatological average [1981 - 2010]. All data are subject to verification and amendment.

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1st: A bright morning, but soon cloudier with some weak sunshine. A little ice deposition was seen around the summit of Carnedd Llewelyn and cliffs eastward. In the garden there were gnats swarmed near the Stevenson screen and a raven croaking in its favourite tall tree. The water bath was in demand with a robin and blackbird bathing in succession while I was doing the obs. A cooler morning at 3.5C (dewpoint 2.2C) indicating by 'rule of thumb' a 25% chance of ice precipitation. The hailometer was unmarked and remained so all day. Cloud was moderately high, I only saw weak sunshine at times although the cloud did lift from the mountains by 3 pm. I missed seeing a fall of snow at dusk at 4 pm, that was spotted and reported by John Williams, above 2500 ft mainly on the Carneddau, also the Glyders, Carnedd y Filiast and the Elidirs. {Gravesend 12.7C, Cluanie Inn 38.8 mm, Dyce 5.1h} [Rain 0.2 mm; Max 7.6C; Min 3.3C; Grass -0.3C]
2nd: An overcast morning with a glimpse of weak sunshine as the sun rose over the Carneddau after 08 GMT. At 09 GMT there were spots of rain and cloud was on the mountaintops, but I could see a little fresh snow just under the cloudbase at 2800 ft at 1030 GMT. A little brighter during the morning with weak sunshine then turning breezy with thicker cloud in the afternoon bringing slight rain from 1700 - 2100 GMT it was heavy in Benllech at 1915 GMT. [Rain 14.2 mm; Max 10.0C; Min 1.1C; Grass -3.3C]
3rd: Rain, with strong gusts of wind (27 mph ), was heavy between 0110 and 0150 GMT falling at a rate up to 15.4 mm/h at 0122 GMT here and 109 mm/h at 0130 GMT in Llanfairfechan. There were 14.2 mm in the raingauge in the morning in Llansadwrn, the most since 22 October. The ground was a little soft underfoot after the rain. After a few spots of rain earlier the day was dry with a little sunshine at times although cloud persisted on the mountaintops. {Frittenden 13.0C, Capel Curig 28.8 mm, Lyneham 6.1h} [Altnaharra 15.4 mm, Capel Curig 13.0 mm] [Rain 0.8 mm; Max 8.0C; Min 4.1C; Grass 2.8C]
4th: There were a few light marks on the hailometer this morning most likely as a result of a shower at 0500 GMT. At 0900 GMT (6.6C dewpoint 4.2C) a shower was in sight on the mountains and there were spots of rain here at 0920 GMT . The sky clearing slowly from the W before another shower of rain and ice pellets at 1143 GMT as a showery trough passed over Anglesey. There were more showers between 20 and 21 GMT with ice pellets recorded at 2020 GMT. {Swanage 11.4C, Capel Curig 26.6 mm, Dyce 5.5h, St Athan 0.4h} [Rain 2.6 mm; Max 6.4C; Min 5.3C; Grass 3.2C]
5th: Temperatures on the summit of Snowdon were between -3 and -4C and there was light snow lying on the mountains at 1800 ft in the morning, as low as 1200 ft in places and heavy white frost was seen at Llyn Ogwen at 0820 GMT. A fine, but cloudy morning and opportunity was taken to service the Casella natural siphon autographic raingauge. Normally very reliable the float mechanism had been sticking and a good clean out and polish up was necessary - the job took about an hour. The morning was bright with a little weak sunshine, perhaps the odd shaft of clear sunshine breaking through. There was not much wind in the garden and some pink Cistus flowers were half open and white ones were fully open. I put the lemons trees were put in the greenhouse for the winter and pruned the vine. There was a good crop of lemons this year. The snow on the mountains persisted into the afternoon, but there was much less of it at 1500 GMT. {Isle of Portland 9.5|C, Sheffield 13.8 mm, Lyneham 6.1h} [Rain 1.0 mm; Max 5.0C; Min 2.0C; Grass -1.0C]
6th: More showers of ice precipitation overnight with remnants found on the ground at 0900 GMT. Marks on the hailometer indicated pellets between 4 - 5 mm diameter having fallen around 0445 GMT. Fresh snow on the mountains lay at 1800 ft and as low as 1200 ft at Ogwen and Llanberis Pass while it was at 2000 ft on eastern parts of the range. There were indications of some drifting in places at the highest levels in strong winds around the summits. Low 977 mb was over the southern North Sea while high 1034 mb was W of the Gibraltar Strait. A frontal trough was lying to the NW and we had more rain and ice pellets at 1146 GMT (4.6C, 21 mm/h and 16 mph breeze). The temperature rose in the afternoon, there were a few sunny spells, turning cloudier and windier later with squally showers (27 mph at 2033 GMT) {Scilly 11.0C, Milford Haven 10.4C, Capel Curig 13.0 mm, St Athan 1.2h} [Rain 4.7 mm; Max 7.7C; Min 2.8C; Grass -0.5C]
7th: The temperature had risen to 8.0C (AWS) a few minutes after midnight then fell sharply in a squally shower to 3.9C at 0452 GMT here, and at Gorwel Heights 0429 GMT 8.4 mm/h and gust of wind 26 mph. The hailometer was well marked by 2 - 3 mm sized pellets. The sky had scattered cumulus clouds and some were 'puffing up' over the mountains where snow was lying (80%, but thin at 2800 ft, and lower at 2000 ft on the central Carneddau. There had been recent snow showers on some tops. Visibility was good or very good with a little haze towards the Lleyn peninsular. Low 987 mb was N of Scotland and high 1034 mb over Spain, we were experiencing a strong westerly airflow. The morning was breezy with some sunny spells with the afternoon and evening keeping dry. {Milford Haven 9.6C, Llansadwrn 8.0C at 0007z, Cluanie Inn 35.4 mm, St Athan 5.4h} [Rain 5.0 mm; Max 10.3C; Min 4.0C; Grass 1.2C]
8th: A strengthening force 6/7 SW'ly wind at dawn with a gust of 48 mph at 0732 GMT, pressure 1001 mb was falling rapidly at 09 GMT with the temperature risen to 10.3C, the maximum of the past 24-h. Atlantic low 964 mb had tracked NE and was off W Scotland with a warm front over Wales and cold front over W Ireland. The Met Office had issued a rare red severe weather warning of damaging wind and snow for parts of central Scotland. Here just a yellow warning of strong winds. The 30 mph warnings on the Britannia Bridge were set at 09 GMT and changed to 20 mph and closed to high-sided vehicles at 1206 GMT although HGV's still seemed to be crossing. A gust of 40 mph was recorded at Gorwel Heights at 1133 GMT and pressure here reached a low point 996.4 mb at 1154 GMT. With gusts reaching (98 mph) on Snowdon the cold front arrived here at 1211 GMT with a sudden downpour of rain reaching 66 mm/h (no ice precipitation this time) that looked almost horizontal crossing the fields. The postman called soon after and said he was 'glad to be having his break' in his van at the time. Shoppers in Llanfairpwll were soaked to the skin, one woman going to a nearby charity shop and to buy dry clothes. The A4085 near Caernarfon was closed for a time the result of a fallen tree. A blustery at times afternoon with light showers, including small ice pellets at 1530 GMT, light and occasional quieter spells in what was a sunless day. The 30 mph speed limit remained on the Britannia Bridge all day. An AWS at 4085 ft (1245 m) on Cairngorm, operated by Heriot-Watt University Physics Department, recorded a mws of 112 mph and a gust of 149 mph just after noon. The Met Office reported a gust of 165 mph on Cairngorm. By evening after closure of many schools, bridges and roads at least 60,000 properties were reported by Scottish Power Companies to be without electricity. There was flooding too in some areas including Cumbria. The storm was being compared with the Boxing Day storm of 1998; we got off lightly on this occasion. [Rain 2.7 mm; Max 11.0C; Min 3.8C; Grass -0.5C]
Snowdonia Mountains as seen from Llansadwrn.
9th: A bright morning with backlit cumulus clouds over the mountains, some were moderately towering. Sunny spells developed the convective clouds continued to predominate in the afternoon over Snowdonia while more isolated clouds drifted across on the WNW'ly wind with spectacular displays of upward and downward sloping crepuscular rays. There were showers over the mountains leaving patches of light snow while in Llansadwrn there were showers of 2 - 3 mm snow pellets, heaviest around 1530 GMT whitening the ground for a few minutes when the temperature dropped to 3.3C. There was another shower at 2120 GMT of more snow pellets, almost covering the ground and this time with some flakes of snow. The sky became partly clear later in the night. [Rain 0.5 mm; Max 6.1C; Min 3.2C; Grass -0.8C]
Backlit cumulus with upward & downward crepuscular rays. 10th: Another shower of ice precipitation at 0200 GMT, snow pellets and possibly snow. In the morning slight snow was lying on the Carneddau Mountains at 1800 ft and as low as 100 ft at Llyn Ogwen. Most was lying in the West of the range and on Snowdon. With the temperature on the ground falling to -4.0C there were some pellets remaining frozen on the grass and there was ice on the bird's bath. The temperature at 09 GMT was 1.5C (dewpoint 0.7C). A fine day ensued with some sunny spells with a maximum temperature of 6.5C in the afternoon. Later the temperature, after an evening fall, was to rise as a rain-bearing front approached.. [Rain 14.2 mm; Max 8.8C; Min 0.0C; Grass -4.0C]
View of mountain snow with yellow maple leaves. 11th: Rain moderate to heavy from midnight. The temperature had risen to 8.8C between 06 and 07 GMT before falling to 09 GMT 7.1C as a front passed over and the rain eased. The 14.2 mm rain had made the ground very soggy underfoot. Some of the local fields where the soil structure is not free draining as here had pools of water on them on the 9th. A dull overcast morning, the afternoon brighter but with showers of rain. Gorwel Heights in Llanfairfechan had up to 29 mm/h falling at 1610 - 1620 GMT. {Scilly Is 11.1C, Capel Curig 35.4 mm, Tiree Is 2.4h} [Rain 1.7 mm; Max 7.5C; Min 1.5C; Grass -1.3C]
Selected high gusts recorded on 12 December 2011. Courtesy of MetO, Internet & local sources. 12th: A showery morning with slight snow falling on the mountains as low as 2500 ft. Here some ice precipitation marks on the hailometer indicative of small ice pellets. Visibility was poor in rain at 09 GMT with a temperature of 4.7C. Pressure was 1002 mb, but would soon start falling rapidly as low 967 mb W of Scotland deepened. Overcast and raining by 1500 GMT with the S'ly wind strengthening. The wind was particularly strong at Gorwel Heights in Llanfairfechan from the SSE force 7/8 with gusts over 50 mph from 1800 GMT, highest 65 mph at 1836 GMT, off the local mountains (Garreg Fawr 1168 ft). This was coupled with passage of a warm front and torrential rain that fell at a rate of up to 175 mm/h, highest of the month {14.2 mm 00-00z; Nantlle 40.9 mm}. Quieter in Llansadwrn highest gust 35 mph, but later at 2326 GMT we had the cold front with rain and ice pellets up to 5 mm diameter falling at rate up to 52 mm/h the temperature falling quickly by 4C. Lowest barometer reading was 977.6 mb at 2320 GMT. [Scilly 11.6C, Milford Haven 10.0C, Llanfairfechan 10.9C, Boscombe Down 35.8 mm, Capel Curig 34.2 mm, Mona 16.6 mm, Aberporth 2.4h] [Rain 17.0 mm; Max 9.7C; Min 2.0C; Grass -1.2C]
13th: Showers continued after midnight, some with ice precipitation. Deep patches and broken snow lay on the mountaintops with frequent light wintry showers. Low 984 mb was off the Western Isles with pressure here 1002 mb that began to fall again by 1030 GMT. The SW'ly wind was strengthening to strong to gale-force with gusts up to 44 mph; high-sided vehicles were prohibited on the Britannia Bridge with a 20 mph speed restriction. A fine dry day here, bright at times, but the wind was unrelenting through to midnight with scattered clouds and some clear spells with bright moonlight overnight. [St Catherine's Point 9.7C, Tulloch Bridge 35.4 mm, Valley 2.3h] [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 5.3C; Min 3.5C; Grass 1.3C]
14th: The gale-force wind continued until just after midnight then it moderated and the the speed limit on the Britannia Bridge reverted to 30 mph during the night. A fine bright morning with weak sunshine and backlit cumulus clouds over the mountains, some moderately towering. There were some sunny spells in the afternoon as the cloud lifted from the tops of the Carneddau by 1600 GMT, but not Snowdon. As low 981 mb SW Ireland began tracking across the Irish Sea thundery showers encroached, with isolated sferics in the area, a distant rumble of thunder was heard at 1700 GMT. Valley reported recent rain showers at 2150 GMT and there were a few ice pellets and 2 rumbles of thunder here at 2242 GMT. {Mumbles Hd. 8.3C, Usk 15.4 mm, Aberporth 0.4h} [Rain 2.8 mm; Max 5.5C; Min 2.6C; Grass -0.2C]
15th: The barometer reached 986.8 mb at 0116 GMT then began to rise. There were showers with small ice pellets from 03 GMT. At 09 GMT pressure 995.6 mb was rising rapidly the low heading for the North Sea; precipitation was in sight to the S with a dark cumulonimbus cloud moving over the Snowdonia Mountains depositing snow as low as 2000 ft. Light showers continued through the morning, with occasional bright spells and light W/SW'ly breezes, into the afternoon with small ice pellets. Some clear sky appeared in the evening, but was overcast by 2100 GMT. {St Catherine's Point 9.9C, Capel Curig 19.0 mm, Glasgow 5.5h} [Rain 1.8 mm; Max 6.1C; Min 2.0C; Grass -0.6C]

The first 15-days had 69.2 mm precipitation (61%) and [57%] of the month's average. Temperatures were close to normal with the mean 5.2C (0.0) and [-0.1]. Days with hail were 11 this was (+4.2) of average..

16th: Overnight and early morning showers of snow pellets down to sea level, and snow at higher levels on the mountains where it was lying as low as 1200 ft in places at 0900 GMT. Conditions were tricky on the A55 approaching the Britannia Bridge with snow pellets on the road and, as precipitation moved eastward, cars were skidding off the road on Rhuallt Hill in a covering of snow at 1100 GMT. Snow reported later in Manchester. Overnight the minimum temperature had fallen to -0.7C giving the first air frost of the winter. The last air frost here was on 8 March with 281 days frost-free between. Snow pellets showers here at 0915 GMT and further frequent showers of rain and 'wet' conical snow pellets at times through the day. {Camborne 7.9C, Aberdaron 6.3C, Machrihanish 22.0 mm, Llysdinam 19.2 mm, Hurn 4.9h, St Athan 4.1h} [Rain 4.5 mm; Max 5.0C; Min -0.7C; Grass -4.2C]
17th: Showers of ice precipitation after midnight and there were some conical pellets on the grass at 0900 GMT. Variable cloud cover , the sky showing signs of clearing with a light WNW'ly breeze. The mountaintops were cloud covered, but snow could be seen around 2250 ft on the Carneddau and 1250 ft on NE-facing cliffs under Y Garn where gullies looked packed with snow. It was reported a man was killed in an avalanche when attempting to descend one of the gullies. The temperature at 0900 GMT was 3.0C (dewpoint 2.0C) and rose during the day to 5.2C. There was a brief sunny spell at 11 GMT then showers with some more sunny spells during the afternoon. Mistle thrushes were heard 'chirring' in the trees, but being cold no singing yet. They are too late for holly berries, as there were all taken by blackbirds some weeks ago. The evening was mostly clear with little or no wind. {Culdrose 8.4C, Capel Curig 14.2 mm, Hurn 6.0h} [Rain 1.5 mm; Max 5.2C; Min -0.1C; Grass -2.6C]
Orographic waves in cloud to the SE. 18th: Cloud increasing from dawn; a regular pattern of waves in moderately high cloud, spotted to the SE at 0815 GMT. There were some ice covered snow pellets on the ground. Precipitation was in sight at 0900 GMT with visibility deteriorating from good to poor, and it was not long before rain arrived. By afternoon it was brighter with some sunshine, but the sky turned cloudier again during the evening with showery rain from 17 GMT. {Cardiff 9.0C, Capel Curig 17.2 mm, St Athan 4.6h} [Rain 4.3 mm; Max 5.5C; Min 0.3C; Grass -3.4C]
19th: Light to moderate rain from 05 GMT and it was still raining at 0900 GMT. The ground was very soft underfoot and pools of water were larger in nearby fields. The temperature was rising and the 5.5C was the highest of the past 24-h. The rain had melted some of the mountain snow, but snow remained at 2500 ft with broken snow down to 1500 ft in places. Visibility was poor or very poor at times with rain continuous during the morning when it was very dull. Scottish Power contractors were here trimming trees around overhead power cables. We were without electricity from 0915 GMT through till late afternoon. The rain ceased by 14 GMT and the sky was brighter before dusk. {Isle of Portland 11.0C, Milford Haven 10.5C, Gogarddan 19.0 mm, Valley 0.6h} [Rain 9.2 mm; Max 8.5C; Min 2.0C; Grass -1.1C]
Continuing restoration work on Beaumaris Pier.
20th: Overcast and dull with cloud thickening and descending on the mountains from the West. Broken snow remained at 2700 ft and as low as 1500 ft in Cwm Idwal. Work on restoration of Beaumaris pier, opened in 1846, was continuing behind schedule. Piles for the floating pontoon are in place and the shelter is now being replaced. There will be new decking that will be returned to its former width The pier in 1890, courtesy of Gwynedd Archives Service. . Some showery rain before noon; the afternoon had slight drizzle at times. It was a very dull day with little or no wind. [Rain 4.1 mm; Max 10.5C; Min 3.7C; Grass 0.0C]
21st: The temperature at 0900 GMT was 10.5C, the highest of the past 24-h, and on this dull and sunless day was to rise just another 0.1C reaching 10.6 by 1100 GMT. At Gorwel Heights in Llanfairfechan the temperature, enhanced by a Föhn-effect, reached 13.1C at 1950 GMT, but in Rhyl it reached 14.4C highest in Britain on this day. [Rhyl 14.4C] [Rain trace; Max 10.6C; Min 4.3C; Grass 2.2C]
22nd: Bright at first with the sky partially clearing on this the shortest day. Continuing mild in warm sector air the temperature 9.5C at 0900 GMT. The afternoon was overcast with drizzle that seemed to be confined mainly to Anglesey. By evening the SW'ly wind was strengthening with a gust of 33 mph. At Gorwel Heights in Llanfairfechan enhanced by a Föhn-effect the temperature reached 13.3C at 1810 GMT, one of the highest in Wales on this day. {Rosehearty 14.1C, Hawarden 12.8C, Lusa 18.0 mm, Manston 5.8h} } [Rain 11.5 mm; Max 11.0C; Min 8.4C; Grass 5.7C]
23rd: Windy after midnight (gust 38 mph) and moderate to heavy rain from 0430 GMT and still raining in the morning, the ground was very wet underfoot. At 09 GMT a cold front was passing over and the temperature had dropped to 8.1C, the lowest of the past 24-h and was to be the maximum of the next 24.h. The moderate rain soon eased, but another sunless day ensued with showery rain. The temperature at noon was 5.6C and there were small ice pellets and rain at 1435 GMT (heaviest 12.4 mm/h) and 1830 GMT. At dusk the sky was brighter in the West and this clearance reached during the evening with a touch of ground frost (-0.5C) and the air temperature falling to 2.5C around midnight. {Cardiff 11.8C, Capel Curig 42.6 mm, Kinloss 4.5h} [Rain 6.3 mm; Max 8.1C; Min 8.1C; Grass 8.0C]
24th: After midnight cloud encroached and the temperature began to rise and was 6.1C at 09 GMT. Overcast with slight rain at first, a little brighter by 0930 GMT for a while as the SW'ly breeze strengthened during the morning. The afternoon was dull, breezy but kept dry until evening when it was wet and windy. The population of sparrows had increased, there were at least 12 at the feeding table this morning. Several winter heliotropes are now in flower, 2 or 3 Welsh poppies remain and some other garden plants still have a few flowers but reduced in numbers after the air frost on the 16th . {Hawarden 10.6C, Llanfairfechan 9.9C, Llansadwrn 8.8C 21z } [Rain 6.4 mm; Max 10.0C; Min 2.5C; Grass -0.5C]
25th: Christmas Day dawned dull and grey with a fresh to strong SW'ly wind gusting to 42 mph at 1250 GMT (SSW'ly 38 mph at Gorwel Heights at 1210 GMT). No crisp deep snow on the ground this year! With low 957 S of Iceland we were in warm sector air and the temperature had slowly increased through the night and was 10.0C, highest of the past 24-h. Low cloud and mist hung around most of the day here, but lifted for a time coastal areas on the west-coast. There was clear sunshine in a lee-clearance in Llanfairfechan; the temperature rose to 13.9C, one of the highest recorded in Wales, in a Föhn-effect at 1830 GMT the wind gusting to 26 mph. A 30 mph speed limit was in force on the Britannia Bridge all day. {Aberdeen 15.1C, Llanfairfechan 13.9C, Hawarden 13.6C, Tyndrum 39.2 mm, Capel Curig 25.6 mm, Kinloss 1.5h, Valley 0.4h} [Rain 0.2 mm; Max 11.4C; Min 6.1C; Grass 5.1C]
Backward trajectory analysis of air arriving over Anglesey at 05 GMT on 26 December 2011. Researched on the NOAA ARL Website. 26th: A spell of drizzle and slight rain around 0500 GMT that deposited a moderate amount of Saharan dust. A sample collected at 0900 GMT was pinkish-white to light reddish-brown in colour MUNSELL® soil colour chart (2.5YR 8/2; 7/3, dry) and could be seen dried on parked vehicles. Backward trajectory analyses (left), using the HYSPLIT model, courtesy of the NOAA ARL website, indicated that parcels of air arriving over Anglesey, in a shallow band at 500 m AGL, after crossing the Atlas Mountains traversed the Saharan desert in central Algeria between 17/18 December before moving over northern Mali on the 19th, Mauritania on the 20th and on to cross Western Sahara reaching the Canary Islands on the 21st. Parcels were over the Azores on the 24th then moved rapidly towards S Ireland and St George's Channel arriving over Anglesey on the 26th around 05 GMT. The dust was also detected by pollution monitors that measure roadside particles on Anglesey between 05 and 06 GMT (provisional data courtesy of the Welsh Air Monitoring Forum website); at Brynteg a peak of 168 μg per m-3 total suspended particulates was recorded while at Llynfaes 191μg per m-3 was recorded. Spots of rain on the wind that was SW'ly force 5/6 and a 30 mph speed limit was in force on the Britannia Bridge all day. Dull here, but bright on the mainland becoming less windy by evening and overnight. [Aberdeen 15.5C, Hawarden 13.8C, Llanfairfechan 12.7C, {Kinlochewe 89 mm} Capel Curig 13.6 mm, Valley 0.0h] [Rain 2.3 mm; Max 11.5C; Min 9.8C; Grass 9.6C]
27th: Little variation in the temperature under thick cloud overnight with light rain falling between 02 and 08 GMT. Still overcast at 0900 GMT with good visibility, but misty looking towards the mountains. Deep low 985 mb was W of Shannon tracking NE while a warm front was just N of here. Strengthening SW'ly wind again today, the 30 mph speed restriction on the Britannia bridge was restored just before midnight. [Hawarden 12.3C, Llanfairfechan 11.1C, Capel Curig 9.8 mm, Valley 0.0h] [Rain 8.5 mm; Max 9.4C; Min 8.5C; Grass 7.8C]
28th: The deep low 970 mb was off NW Scotland at 0900 GMT with northern parts receiving a battering from the storm force winds. Pressure here was 1015 mb and the W'ly winds were now much lighter. Windy after midnight (36 mph gust at 0253 GMT) and as a cold front passed over the temperature falling from 9.3C at 0304 GMT to 3.3C at 0818 GMT. There was a burst of heavy rain and ice pellets at 0436 GMT (up to 25 mm/h). At Gorwel Heights in Llanfairfechan there was a gust of 41 mph at 0039 GMT and a burst of heavy rain 66 mm/h at 0443 GMT the temperature falling from 10.7C at 0124 GMT to 2.8C at 0915 GMT. In a clear slot it was a brightening morning with some sunshine developing before turning cloudier again later. Lesser celandine, that has become a problem weed, was already growing in profusion in some places in the garden. {Manston 11.6C, Llanfairfechan 10.7C, Cluanie Inn 75.2 mm, Boulmer 4.1h, Valley 3.2h} [Rain 6.5 mm; Max 7.2C; Min 5.6C; Grass 3.3C]
29th: A spell of light rain from 02 to 06 GMT and there were spots of rain at 0900 GMT. Pressure 1019 mb was falling slowly from the 1024 mb around midnight. A blustery morning with a moderate to fresh W'ly wind with slight rain at times. A 30 mph speed limit on the Britannia Bridge was kept until evening when the wind moderated. There were breaks in the cloud with some clear spells around midnight when tawny owls were about. [Rain 0.6 mm; Max 8.5C; Min 4.5C; Grass 2.0C]
30th: Another overcast misty morning with spots of rain that continued intermittently during the morning, a mistle thrush tried a few bursts of song about 1115 GMT. Rain was heavier at times in the afternoon and with the ground now saturated with water there was surface water running at the sides of local roads. [Rhyl 12.3C, Llanfairfechan 12.2C, Capel Curig 12.0 mm, Valley 0.0h] [Rain 6.2 mm; Max 10.5C; Min 4.5C; Grass 0.4C]
31st: A mild end of the year, 10.2C here at 09 GMT and 6C on the summit of Snowdon. Visibility was good at low levels, but a thick layer of cloud hung between 2000 and 2500 ft on the mountainsides. [Llanfairfechan 13.5C, Hawarden 13.3C, Capel Curig 18.8 mm, Valley 0.4h] [Rain 5.1 mm; Max 11.1C; Min 5.3C; Grass 4.7C]

The month ended with rainfall of 146.4 mm (129%) & [121%] of averages highest since 2006 and ranking 23 since 1918. A mild month with the mean 6.0C (+0.7) and [+0.6] of averages, =highest since 2007. It was the 2nd dullest December on the Anglesey record (K&Z adjusted values) sunshine of only 21.3h at Valley just beating the 14.4 h (15.5h by Campbell-Stokes) in Holyhead in 1931.

Wx-Retro   on these days 50-years ago in 1962, the year of the Cuban Missile Crisis and when Prime Minister Harold Macmillan sacked 7 of his Cabinet in what was to become known as 'The Night of the Long Knives'. £'s shillings and pence, feet, inches and Fahrenheit were still in use (And in the news on the 1st January: Severe cold weather halts return to work.     University College graduates wed at Swansea.     The Beatles' audition with Decca is unsuccessful.     Western Samoa gains independence from New Zealand.)

31st December 1961: The beginning of December was fairly mild, but from the 3rd week, with low-pressure 950 mb over the Baltic, very cold air moved S across Britain bringing severe weather to many parts. On the 30th a depression and frontal system approaching from the W on meeting the cold air from the N overnight nearly an inch of precipitation turned to snow in South Wales and southern England and on Sunday 31st there were 4 to 6 in of snow, over a foot in parts of the Midlands. Heavy snow in London brought travel to a standstill during the evening. [Greater London Pptn 0.7 in 18 mm; Max 31F minus 0.4C]

Snow in Singleton Park Swansea.

Train in the snow in 1962. Courtesy of the webmaster's collection DERBYZULZERS. 1st January 1962: It was back to work for many today after the Christmas and New Year's Eve festivities. It was not a Bank Holiday in Wales and England in 1962, being introduced after decimalisation on 15th February 1971. Temperatures had fallen to 3F in London and snow lay on the ground and there were major interruptions in transport particularly the railways, and telecommunications. The intense cold had frozen points and not being used during the holiday there were large icicles in many tunnels that had to be cleared before trains could be run. Trains got going later in the day with delays of over 4 hours in the journey from Swansea to Paddington. [Greater London Max 30.7F minus 0.7C; Min 3F minus 16C]

Just married on 1st January 1962. On the 1 January 2012 Patricia and I celebrated our Golden Wedding Anniversary. We were married at St Mary's Church in Swansea at 11 am on the snowy 1st January 1962, The groom and bride arrived on time, but some guests from Gower and elsewhere did not make it through the snow. We had a day not easily forgotten. After a reception for family and friends at the Dragon Hotel, a long while drinking coffee in a café near the station waiting for the trains to start running again, we got to London about 1 am on the 2nd. We were not alone in choosing the cold 1 January, we were joined coincidentally by another newly married couple en-route, so we were treated to a second lot of confetti and rice!


  1st: Fifty-years on and it was a mild day with an overnight minimum of 9.1C 48F on Anglesey, highest of the month, 11.5C 53F in London rising to 13.1C 56F during the day. Pressure here 999 mb was falling slowly between complex low 992 mb over Iceland and high-pressure to the S (1032 mb Spain and 1025 mb Croatia). We were in a vigorous SW'ly airflow and there had been showers of rain at 0835 GMT in Llanfairfechan (18 mm/h) and here at 0753 GMT (10.6 mm/h), but at 0900 GMT the sky was showing signs of opening up. This was not to be as soon the darkening there were rumbles of thunder and heavy rain and some ice pellets falling at a rate of 52 mm/h at 1040 GMT. Most of the snow that fell on the Snowdonia Mountains in December had melted leaving a few small patches high up near Foel-goch. The first snowdrops were starting to appear between fallen leaves on the lawn, joining the early spring-like appearance of some of the Azalea bushes. A dull sunless day. {London 13.1C, Hawarden 11.5C, Llanfairfechan 11.2C, Capel Curig 28.4 mm, Kinloss 4.3h} [Rain 2.9 mm; Max 9.6C; Min 9.1C; Grass 7.9C]
2nd: A brighter morning today, but cloud was variable towards 09 GMT. Visibility was good or very good with relative humidity of 86% and a temperature of 3.3C after a touch of ground frost. The morning became mostly sunny and the afternoon had good spells of sunshine with the temperature rising to 6.1C before turning cloudier by 16 GMT The breeze was picking up by evening, but there was little change in temperature through to midnight 6.6C. There was rain from 2330 GMT. More snowdrops had appeared in the garden since yesterday, many showing white-tips, but not yet fully developed. [Jersey 9.6C, St Catherine's Point 9.3C, Capel Curig 34.4 mm] [Rain 9.4 mm; Max 10.9C; Min 2.7C; Grass -0.5C]
3rd: At midnight a vigorous deepening low 968 mb was to the NW off Mail Head and we were in warm sector air. The Oregon pressure alarm sounded during the night as pressure was falling rapidly. At 06 GMT the low was 952 mb off the Western Isles with pressure here 984 mb. The temperature reached 10.9C in the screen, 11.1C by the AWS registered at 0640 GMT and was the highest of the past 24-h and the month. Storm force winds and very strong gusts had been recorded overnight, Malin Head 105 mph, Edinburgh 102 mph, Aberdaron 93 mph, Capel Curig 86 mph, Valley 69 mph, Llanfairfechan 47 mph. We seemed relatively sheltered here in the WNW'ly but a gust of 58 mph was recorded at 0650 GMT along with very heavy rain falling at a rate of 37 mm/h, the exposed Britannia Bridge was closed to HSV's with a 20 mph speed restriction in force. A very large ash tree had been blown down on a field boundary adjacent to the A5025 SW of Pedair-groeslon. There was considerable damage nationwide, worst affected were N Ireland and Scotland with thousands left without electricity for several days. A man was killed in Kent crushed by a tree falling on his van, a crewman died after being rescued from a tanker in the English Channel, and the Port of Dover was closed for a time. There was considerable disruption to travel especially in Scotland with problems at airports and curtailment of East Coast train services. Improving weather in the afternoon here becoming bright with sunny spells, but continuing breezy. There was a light blustery shower of wet snow pellets and rain at 2050 GMT (gust 35 mph) the temperature dropping to 3.9C as the wind moderated. {Trawsgoed 13.0C, Llanfairfechan 12.6C, Tulloch Bridge 24.6 mm, Boulmer 3.4h] [Rain 0.8 mm; Max 7.6C; Min 3.0C; Grass 1.6C]
Broken squirrel damaged sycamore branch. 4th: Overcast, ragged low cloud and misty with spots of rain on the moderate WSW'ly wind. Pressure was 1017 mb with low 986 mb over the Baltic. Spots of rain and light rain in the afternoon on a warm front, wind strengthening. By evening the W'ly wind had reach near-gale to gale force around Lleyn and the North Wales Coast as far as Liverpool. A branch of a tall sycamore was found on the ground on the leek patch not far from the Stevenson screen. This had been damaged by grey squirrels that had debarked critically more than half of the 12 cm diameter branch (photo left). Although the cambial layer had healed a strong gust of wind was sufficient to snap the branch. The trees hereabouts suffered a lot of damage in the tops before the greys were culled to help the red squirrel population that is expanding. Recent reports suggest that reds have crossed the Menai Suspension Bridge and set up a colony on the mainland. We have yet to see any here, although they were present here 30-years ago, we live in hope they will return! By 2200 GMT the wind was still gale 8/9 at Aberdaron and Liverpool, Crosby and moving northwards had reached force 12 with a maximum gust of 112 mph recorded on Great Dunn Fell before midnight. {Milford Haven 10.2C, Lake Vyrnwy 24.0 mm, St Athan 0.3h} [Rain 7.4 mm; Max 9.7C; Min 3.8C; Grass 0.6C]
5th: A heavy shower (68 mm/h) at 0352 GMT in Llanfairfechan and another breezy day, the Britannia Bridge was already closed to HSV's with a 20 mph speed limit. A gust of 88 mph was recorded overnight in Capel Curig. There was a blustery shower at 09 GMT with the W'ly wind roaring and swaying the trees, but somewhat sheltered in the garden force 5/6. Complex low pressure 964 mb over the Baltic with tight isobars on the chart and pressure here 1002 mb. Another stormy day with electricity supplies disrupted in parts of Wales. At Aberystwyth the metal clad roof of the National Library of Wales broke loose and users evacuated. Many trees and telephone lines were brought down closing some roads; in Cardiff a driver had a narrow escape when a tree fell on his car just after he had left it. Sunny spells and light showers of rain in the morning here, the afternoon less windy with some sunshine. The evening had broken cloud and a slight shower of rain and small ice pellets. The soil temperature today at 30 cm was 6.8C and (+1.2) of the January average. Soil moisture was 66% dry mass, a little drier than the 69 % on the 23rd December. {Swanage 12.3C, Okehampton 18.0 mm, Glasgow 5.5h} [Rain 0.6 mm; Max 8.5C; Min 6.2C; Grass 3.8C]
Late flowering greenhouse chrysanthemums Balcombe Perfection. 6th: Dull, overcast and damp, but the wind had moderated. Visibility was moderate and misty. With high 1039 mb off Cape Finisterre pressure here 1026 mb had risen in a ridge of high-pressure resulting in lighter winds. It did nothing for cloud cover that remained in place and thick enough for rain at times. Only in late afternoon was a clearance seen in the W and it was briefly bright before dusk. Mistle thrushes were very active around the woods today, singing from time to time with much chirring as disputes developed. [Llanfairfechan 10.7C, Hawarden 9.9C, Rhyl 9.5C, Sennybridge 3.4 mm, Manston 6.3h, St Athan 1.0h] [Rain 1.3 mm; Max 9.5C; Min 2.9C; Grass -1.2C]
7th: Mostly cloudy with some breaks developing by noon giving a little sunshine. The afternoon turned cloudier and the sky becoming overcast. There was little or no wind. {Cardiff 11.6C, Cluanie Inn 17.2 mm, Yeovilton 5.2h} [Rain 0.3 mm; Max 8.7C; Min 4.5C; Grass 3.0C]
8th: Moderate fog at 0900 GMT with the sky obscured. There had been light to moderate drizzle for the past hour and this had accumulated 0.3 mm in the raingauge. The fog was slow to clear, by afternoon it began to lift leaving cloud around the mountain summits. It has been days without a clear view. By 1620 GMT the sky was brighter in the W and spreading out altocumulus clouds and contrails were lit for a while with golden and purple colours. Light breezes all day continued into the mostly cloudy night. {Usk 13.0C, Kirkwall 18.4 mm, Yeovilton 2.8h} [Rain 1.8 mm; Max 9.5C; Min 6.4C; Grass 4.4C]
A dark morning at the weather station: Observer using LED headlamp. 9th: A grey and rather dark morning with fine drizzle and slight rain at times. Pressure 1027 mb was rising slowly, but a weak cold front heading SE, associated with low 968 mb over Iceland, was slow moving over the Irish Sea. The front cleared during the afternoon and for a time there was some clear sky and a little sunshine. More cloud encroached later, broken for a while during the evening, then overcast again. {Shoreham 13.1C, Kinlochewe 29.2 mm, Leuchars 5.6h} [Rain 0.2 mm; Max 9.5C; Min 7.5C; Grass 6.0C]
10th: Overcast sky with low stratiform cloud over Anglesey and a fine wetting drizzle and very poor visibility towards the mountains, but it looked bright towards Conwy and there was sunshine on the Great Orme. The mistle thrushes did not seem to mind as they were singing and a great spotted woodpecker began drumming nearby. The drizzle cleared away by the afternoon as the breeze picked up,but it kept overcast. I saw a large flock of redwings on 'church field', the first this winter hereabouts. Five or six long-tailed tits turned up at the fat feeder today, they have been around in groups in the trees for a while, but this was the first time seen at the feeder this year. Light rain from 2100 GMT. {Hawarden 12.7C, Llanfairfechan 11.6C, Aultbea 53.2 mm, Leconfield 3.8h, Valley 0.5h} [Rain 2.9 mm; Max 9.3C; Min 6.3C; Grass 1.9C]
11th: Intermittent rain until 0400 GMT. Another morning with moderate fog, a very fine drizzle with sky obscured. Very dull. By noon the fog had lifted a little and it was brighter briefly, but visibility was still very poor. Fog increased again in the afternoon and before dusk visibility was < 100 m, thick fog. {Hawarden 13.1C, Kinlochewe 30.8 mm, Camborne 6.5h} [Rain 1.5 mm; Max 9.9C; Min 7.2C; Grass 7.0C]
Evening sky colours after sunset. 12th: A much brighter morning with the sky clearing at 09 GMT as frontal cloud began clearing in the last 15-minutes.. A complex sky including large expanding contrails overhead. A bank of cloud, with a sharp northern edge, persisted over the Snowdonia Mountains through the day, with the sky clear over Anglesey by 1000 GMT it was sunny. Later bright with sunny spells as cloud developed, later weak sunshine through thin cirrostratus clouds. I noticed lambs in 'kissing gate field' for the first time and several plants of lesser celandine in flower in 'black horse lane'. This is very early in the year to see the yellow flowers of lesser celandine and in such numbers. Some brilliant colours were seen in the sky after sunset this evening (photo left). Tawny owls were heard again at midnight. {Usk 13.7C, Cluanie Inn 45.4, Morecambe 5.5h, Valley 5.0h} [Pptn trace; Max 9.6C; Min 8.6C; Grass 6.6C]
13th: With clear sky overnight the temperature on the grass fell to -2.2C freezing moisture and dewdrops so that there was extensive 'white frost' on the fields. I had the drosometer out overnight and measured 0.11 mm deposition of frozen dew. There was smoke drift from the N, otherwise calm. Some patchy cloud with contrails overhead at 09 GMT then clearing again. A sunny morning then turning cloudier later in the afternoon with an orangy-red sky in the W at sunset. {Scilly 10.4C, Trawsgoed 9.0C, Benson -5.1C, Aberporth 6.6h} [Pptn trace; Max 8.2C; Min 2.0C; Grass -2.2C]
Fishing huts on the frozen St Lawrence River, Canada.

14th: An almost clear sky at 09 GMT, again extensive white frost on fields, there was ice on water, the grass minimum had fallen to -4.2C and there was 0.19 mm of dew/ frost deposition. Calm, with very good visibility and the morning sunny. Mostly sunny afternoon, cloudier by 1600 GMT with light breezes at times, clearing and becoming calm later. Clear at night with an orangy coloured moon rising over Carnedd Llewelyn just before midnight. {Scilly 9.7C/ Benson -7.4, Woodford 7.2h, Aberporth 6.9h} [Pptn trace; Max 7.3C; Min 0.0C; Grass -4.2C]
Winter in Brockville, Ontario,Canada. 15th: Mostly clear and calm, with the grass minimum down to 5.2C there was the usual frozen dew and a little hoar frost on low standing vegetation. A slight air frost here overnight, minimum -0.9C, but at Mona was -3.5C. A heavier dew/frost deposition this morning of 0.24 mm. Pressure had fallen but was steady on 1023 mb, the high had drifted to be over the southern North Sea 1028 mb. Sunny all day with a little high cirrus cloud in the afternoon with light variable airs at times. One of my correspondents Brenda Johnson emailed to say it was -21C today in Brockville on the banks of the St Lawrence River in Ontario, Canada. The photo on the left was taken yesterday and the one above when the St Lawrence was frozen hard enough to support fishing huts. It had not quite reached that stage this year; people go about their normal business, in this type of weather. The bridge (click to enlarge to see the bridge) is the Ogdensburg–Prescott International Bridge crossing to the USA is about 12 miles east of Brockville. {Scilly 8.8C/Aboyne -9.4C, Woodford 7.1h, Aberporth 6.9h} [Pptn trace; Max 6.5C; Min -0.9C; Grass -5.2C]
16th: A bright sunny morning with thin high cirrus and contrails overhead. Smoke haze was seen against the mountains cutting off at 2500 ft. The temperature here at 09 GMT was -0.5C (dewpoint -3.6C) and there was very cold air around the summit of Snowdon with temperatures as low as -10C. But, not as cold as in Ottawa, Canada, where the temperature in the morning was -27C. Frost duration here was 13.5 h in the 24-h to 09 GMT. The grass was white with frost and there was a little hoar frost on low vegetation; measured frost deposition was 0.21 mm with the grass minimum down to -6.1C. The sun had risen at 0848 GMT and set at 1620 GMT; the day was mostly sunny with Valley reporting 6.9h. At Tywyn Aberffraw most dune slacks including the 'willow slack' were dry (photo below left that also shows smoke haze on the horizon looking east), there was water in one hollow and wet area that had drained from higher ground A wet hollow at Aberffraw dunes.. The Murray Grey cattle were grazing the dunes later in the afternoon and had been down to beach earlier. A few daffodils were spotted in flower on the roadside near Llangadwaladr and many more at Cefncwmwd near Rostrehwfa, there are none that I have seen around Llansadwrn yet. Flocks of 30 - 40 lapwings were also seen in the area. A clear frosty evening before turning cloudier around midnight. [Gogarddan 9.3C, Rhyl 7.3C, Aberporth 7.7h] [Pptn trace frost; Max 6.7C; Min -1.4C; Grass -6.1C]

A dry willow slack at Aberffraw dunes. 17th: Mostly cloudy in the morning, but it had kept dry overnight. Despite being warmer the ground was still frozen especially in shaded parts with the soil temperature 0.5C at 5 cm deep, 0.1C down from yesterday. As it had not rained the drosometer measurement was valid and indicated a dew/ frost deposition of 0.17 mm. Pressure was 1025 mb with the high 1032 mb over France with a ridge towards southern Britain. Light variable breezes, brightening before noon it was sunny for a while in the afternoon then turned cloudier again The evening was overcast, but dry. [Llanfairfechan 13.9C, Dublin 11.5C, Plymouth 11.4C, Valley/ Aberdaron 8.1C, Aberporth 3.6h] [Rain 3.2 mm; Max 10.0C; Min -0.5C; Grass -5.1C]
18th: In a SW'ly breeze of up to 24 mph the temperature at Gorwel Heights in Llanfairfechan at 0430 GMT was 13.9C and here 9.9C (AWS) at the same time. The result of a warm front associated with low 995 mb over Iceland passing over giving light to moderate rain from 0530 to 0730 GMT. At 09 GMT there was low cloud fog and a temperature of 9.5C and 100% relative humidity while at Gorwel Heights it was 11.8C and 68% RH. The fog began to lift during the morning with a following cold front with the afternoon brighter, but the sky remained overcast. There were quite long new shoots on Clematis Ville de Lyon, in the garden, that had completely died back for the 'winter'. [Shobdon 13.4C, Hawarden 12.4C, Llanfairfechan 11.8C, Aberdeen 3.5h, Valley 0.0h] Rain 5.1 mm; Max 9.8C; Min 3.7C; Grass 1.0C]
19th: Light rain from midnight until 0500 GMT and a slight shower at 07 GMT. Signs of the sky starting to clear at 0900 GMT, but there was rain in sight and with sunny spells there were showers of rain and small ice pellets before clearing and becoming sunny at 1045 GMT. The afternoon was sunny over Anglesey, but convective clouds with wintry precipitation continued over the Snowdonia Mountains. Buds were appearing on roadside daffodils on 'peacock hill' and redwings (about 40) were amongst starling (about 200) on 'church field in the afternoon. The starlings would fly up into trees, when passing traffic disturbed them, leaving the redwings on the ground. The evening was cloudier with blustery showers especially at Gorwel Heights at 1800 GMT (shower 14 mm/ h). We have had no sighting of bullfinches this winter, they were regular visitors at this time of year. {Exeter 12.5C, Cassley 22 mm, Leconfield 5.3h} [Rain 1.5 mm; Max 7.9C; Min 5.2C; Grass 1.8C]
20th: Overcast with the temperature rising to 7.9C at 09 GMT, the highest of the past 24-h. Although overcast the day kept dry, but rather dull. The SW'ly breeze picked up during the evening force 3/5. {Exeter 11.5C, Ballypatrick Forest 26 mm, Lake Vyrnwy 14 mm, Lerwick 2.0h} [Rain 0.6 mm; Max 9.8C; Min 4.1C; Grass 0.9C]
21st: Slight shower of rain at 07 GMT then signs of the sky clearing as a patch of blue developed to the NE over Red Wharf Bay. Visibility was good, but very misty on the mountaintops. Pressure was 1012 mb and with low 971 mb N of Shetland and we were in a WNW'ly showery airstream. Bright spells with a glimpse of sunshine, and light showers of rain were the orders of the day. {Otterbourne WW 13.5C, Cluanie Inn 30 mm, Aberdeen 4.2h, Aberporth 0.9h} [Rain 2.2 mm; Max 8.2C; Min 7.5C; Grass 6.5C]
22nd: Some clear sky after midnight, but not enough to give a ground frost. Mostly cloudy in the morning with moderate visibility in thick haze. Pressure 1012 mb was rising slowly as low 994 mb N Scotland drifted SE over the North Sea with little change. A weak cold front was in the vicinity; the temperature at 09 GMT was 8.2C (dewpoint 4.3C). The morning brightened only a little, there was a glimpse of sunshine after noon with the temperature rising to 9.8C at 1300 GMT. The rest of the afternoon was dull; the evening and night remained mostly cloud covered. {Swanage 12.7C, Cluanie Inn 30.4 mm, Leuchars 6.2h} [Rain 0.1 mm; Max 9.8C; Min 4.8C; Grass 1.1C]
23rd: With signs of the sky starting to clear before 09 GMT it was a bright morning on Anglesey with a bank of cumulus cloud (base 1500 ft) persisting over the mountains. A quiet morning, the birds were twittering and lambs were bleating across the fields. With the low over the Norwegian Sea filling 998 mb, pressure here 1019 mb was rising as a ridge of high pressure from the Azores (1030 mb) moved across from the west. Bright with the odd sunny spell in the afternoon with a warm frontal cloud associated with complex low 980 mb Iceland encroaching later from the W bringing slight rain by 2300 GMT. {Scilly 11.6C, Leconfield 6.6h} [West Freugh 11.2 mm, Aberdaron 11.0 mm, Capel Curig 8.0 mm] [Rain 11.4 mm; Max 9.1C; Min 3.5C; Grass -0.2C]
24th: Moderate rain, heavy at times during the night, easing off to drizzle when 11.4 mm was recorded in the 24-h to 09 GMT. Fog early, the then moderate fog was decreasing. There were small pools of water around the station, the overnight rain enough to saturate the surface soil, the ground was very soggy and muddy underfoot. Fine drizzle during the morning dying out, but keeping very dull and sunless. Intermittent slight rain from 1700 to 2030 GMT. It was a wet day in Nantlle, Gwynedd, on the upslope of the Snowdonia mountains with 24.9 mm (AWS 00-00z), but in Llansadwrn 11.6 mm (AWS 00-00z) and at Gorwel Heights in Llanfairfechan in rain-shadow 5.2 mm (AWS 00-00z). {Usk No 2 13.5C, Porthmadog 22.6 mm} [Llanfairfechan 12.1C, Hawarden 11.9C, Rhyl 9.9C] [Rain 1.7 mm; Max 10.6C; Min 2.0C; Grass -1.6C]
25th: Overcast with spots of rain on the moderate and gusty S'ly breeze. Visibility was good to very good under the cloud sheet that was lower on the mountain slopes in the W, but towards Conwy the sky looked brighter. Pressure 1010 mb was falling slowly with complex low 983 mb Iceland and high 1026 mb Spain maintaining a warm sector airflow 8.8C (dewpoint 6.9C) at 09 GMT. On the summit of Snowdon the temperature was 4C and there had not been any snow this month so far. There were strong S'ly winds over the North Sea. The day kept mostly dull here, but there were broad crepuscular rays seen along the mountains from the Nant Ffrancon Pass eastward in the morning with a brief glimpse of sunshine before a shower of rain at 1100 GMT. A cold front arrived during late afternoon with strong gusts 39 mph at 1613 GMT (at Gorwel heights 40 mph at 1724 GMT) before moderate to heavy heavy rain from 1915 to 2315 GMT (heaviest 45 mm/h at 1946 GMT falling with ice pellets). Rainfall in the 24-h from 09 GMT today was 15.7 mm, largest of the month. [Hawarden & Llanfairfechan 12.1C, Capel Curig 17.2 mm, Valley 0.0h] [Rain 15.7 mm; Max 9.5C; Min 8.5C; Grass 7.5C]
Afternoon sunshine on snow covered Carnedd Llewelyn. 26th: A slight shower at 05 GMT, a moderate to heavy shower of rain around 07 GMT (10 mm/h) and again at 09 GMT (6 mm/h) and with wet snow pellets falling visibility was moderate. At higher levels sleet and snow above 1000 ft. Snow was lying on the mountains at 1800 ft, but was as low as 1250 ft on the SE-facing slopes of Y Garn. The ground again was saturated with pools of standing water on the fields. A passing showery trough was slow to clear, but the afternoon was brighter at times and kept dry. Another shower with ice perception at 2200 GMT (12 mm/h). [St Athan 8.8C, Hawarden 7.0C, Capel Curig 10.4 mm, Valley 2.5h] [Rain 2.6 mm; Max 5.6C; Min 2.3C; Grass -0.5C]
27th: A mostly cloudy morning with a slight fall of snow pellets at 09 GMT. Snow was lying still at 1800 ft centrally on the Carneddau Mountains. Visibility was good, but slightly misty. Pressure 1017 mb was rising slowly with low 1007 mb N Scotland and high 1031 mb Cape Finisterre. A showery morning with brief sunny spells and wet snow pellets at 1215 GMT. A male bullfinch was spotted in the 'wild garden' the first seen for a while In the afternoon the temperature popped up to 6.7C (AWS 6.3C) between 1430 and 1500 GMT when the sun came out. Otherwise the temperature kept around 5C in a light WSW'ly breeze. During the late afternoon with further showery rain (fresh snow on the mountains) the wind backed NNE'ly and pressure 1019 mb at 1800 GMT continued to rise. {Swanage 10.5C, Cardiff 9.9C, Stoneyhurst 16.4 mm, Capel Curig 14.6 mm, Wattisham 7.9h, Valley 0.9h[Rain 4.9 mm; Max 6.7C; Min 2.4C; Grass -0.8C]
Castle Square on a quiet sunny morning. 28th: At midnight pressure had risen to 1026 mb and with broken or scattered clouds the temperature on the grass fell to -1.8C by morning. The ground was not white with frost, but dew drops were frozen. Pressure 1032 mb was still rising slowly in a ridge from high 1032 mb Cape Finisterre; it was calm with occasional airs from the south-east. Pressure was also intensely high 1058 mb over NW Russia where it was also very cold, the temperature at Kojnas today -35.7C. Visibility was good, or very good looking towards the Lleyn, but there was smoke haze in the east and low-lying mist in the Menai Strait. The morning was bright with weak sunshine, the afternoon sunnier with sun shining on the white topped Carnedd Llewelyn (above right) with lying snow generally at 2000 ft, as low as 1600 ft in places and 1250 ft near Cwm Idwal. {Cardiff 8.3C/ Sennybridge -2.7C, Aberporth 4.0h, Valley 0.8h} [Rain 0.1 mm; Max 5.4C; Min 1.6C; Grass -1.8C]
29th: Overcast with light rain and/ or drizzle most of the day precipitation falling as snow on the Snowdonia Mountains. Pressure had fallen a little 1031 mb,but was still under the influence of the intense high 1059 mb over NW Russia; the temperature in Kalevala today was -37.2C. Dry during the evening, some clear sky for a while. No sunshine here, but 7.2h was recorded at Kinloss in Scotland. {Scilly 9.3C, Killowen 37.4 mm, Whitechurch 22.0 mm, Kinloss 7.2h} [Rain 8.2 mm; Max 4.1C; Min 1.1C; Grass -2.5C]

Snowdonia Mountains from Llansadwrn with orographic cloud.
30th: Fresh snowfall yesterday resulted in snow lying at 1000 ft on the mountains. A bright and sunny morning,again not a lot of frost on the ground (-1.2C) although dew was freezing at 09 GMT. The air temperature was 1.5C (dewpoint -1.7C) and visibility was moderate in smoke haze. Mostly weak sunshine with the odd clear spells of sunshine. Turning cloudier in the afternoon in an ENE'ly breeze with orographic cloud formations overhead. Redwings are still around Llansadwrn, 40 were seen flying from field to field near the bottom of 'peacock hill'. Snowdrops on a sunny lawn are now at their best, in more shaded parts they have to properly develop. We had the best of the sunshine today in an area clear of cloud over the Irish S stretching to the Western Isles of Scotland. {Valley & Llansadwrn 5.2C/ Tredegar min -1.1C, Milford Haven 11.8 mm, Bala 2.4h, Kinloss 6.3h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 5.2 C; Min 1.2C; Grass -1.2C]
Snowdrops were looking at their best the garden today. 31st: The coldest night since the 16th with the air minimum falling to -1.4C, and on the grass to -5.5C, were both lowest of the month. Snow was lying at 1000 ft on the mountains and the temperature on the summit of Snowdon was between -9C and -5C. A bright start with a little altocumulus cloud drifting across on the light E'ly breeze. Pressure 1027 mb was rising slowly with high 1051 mb S Sweden dominating while frontal wave low 1004.1 mb in the SW Approaches was moving over the Bay of Biscay. Anglesey was temporarily in the clear, but low stratiform cloud encroached from the E by 1030 GMT obscuring the sun and with a persistent E'ly breeze giving a rather raw feeling to the afternoon. The maximum temperature of 1.7C (screen and AWS) was lowest of the month. {Scilly 7.1C & 16.8 mm, Pershore min -6.2C, Capel Curig -5.8C, Aviemore 5.2h, Valley 3.6h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 1.7C; Min -1.4C; Grass -5.5C]

The month ended with a mean temperature of 5.9C (+0.5) & [+0.8] of average, highest since 2008 and ranked 9 since 1979. Rainfall of 86.4 mm was (81%) & [85%] of average and was highest since 2009, but ranked 33rd lowest since 1929. Sunshine was a little below average, sunshine duration at Valley was 55.8h (92%) & [96%] of average, lowest since 2008. Sunniest day was on the 16th having 6.9h and there were 8 sunless days.


1st: A clear and frosty morning although not a lot of 'white' on the grass as moisture levels in the air (80%) were relatively low. Just below freezing -0.4C at 0900 GMT with the ground hard underfoot. A light E'ly breeze and just the odd small cumulus cloud appearing overhead soon to disappear again. Visibility was good with moderate smoke haze, good views of the snow on the mountains in the afternoon Sunny all day, the temperature rising to 4.3C, then a blood red sunset at 1655 GMT followed by a peach and azure blue twilight. {Lossiemouth 5.6C/ Aviemore -7.6C, Gogarddan 4.3C/ Hawarden -5.9C, Aberporth 8.6h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 4.3C; Min -1.1C; Grass -3.8C]

MODIS AQUA image 1 February, courtesy of the Rapid Response Team at NASA/GFSC. The MODIS AQUA satellite image (left) acquired on the 1st shows some interesting features. Streaming closed cell marine convective cloud is over the North Sea while Wales is cloud-free revealing the distribution of snow cover Distribution of snow on high ground in Wales.. Also, a closer look at the Irish Sea shows haze visible seen against the colour of the water, and sediment washing around the north coast of Anglesey off South Stack on a falling tide River sediments.. Sediment cab be washed from Cumbrian rivers into Morecambe Bay following heavy rain and along the North Wales coast sweeping around Red Wharf Bay and Point Lynas. This was the route of radioactive materials, put into the sea from Sellafield in the second half of the 20th century, that turned up in deposits found in Red Wharf Bay and on the west coast of Ireland.

2nd: After a mostly clear frosty night with air temperature down to -3.1C and to -7.5C on the grass the ground looked slightly white with frost. Another sunny morning the sun rising over the mountains at 0825 GMT. At 0900 GMT there were many long and expanding contrails overhead (3 oktas), otherwise clear over Anglesey and there was some cloud over the mountaintops of Snowdonia. Snow was still lying between 1000 and 1200 ft although it was looking thinner at lower levels there having been some thawing and/ or sublimation during yesterday's sunshine. More sunshine today with the temperature rising to 4.2C in the screen although the ground remained frozen. The mountains looked spectacular in afternoon sunshine and the evening was clear with temperatures falling rapidly. {Valley 4.6C/ Pembrey Sands -8.1C, Shap Fell -9.4C, Aberporth 8.3h}[Pptn trace; Max 4.2C; Min -3.1C; Grass -7.5C]
3rd: Temperatures down to -4.3C in the air and -9.2C on the grass, the coldest night of the month. It was still -3.0C at 0900 GMT when there was 4 oktas cover of cirrus clouds. The ground looked a little whiter this morning and was very hard under foot. Pressure was steady on 1040 mb with high 1041 Wales. A sunny morning, but cloud encroached by afternoon; the maximum temperature 4.0C was lowest of the month. There was a clear spell during the evening, but cloudier again before midnight with pressure falling. {Hawarden 3.8C/ Sennybridge -11.3, Yeovilton 8.5h, St Athan 7.4h} [Rain 0.1 mm; Max 4.0C; Min -4.3C; Grass -9.2C]
4th: Fluctuating temperatures overnight, was 0.3C at midnight then rising. Overcast and slight rain before 0900 GMT on what was to be a sunless day. The temperature had risen to 3.8C and pressure 1032 mb was falling slowly. High pressure over the Baltic 1047 mb and 1041 mb Cape Finisterre was loosing ground to Icelandic low 984. The result was encroaching warmer air and fronts from the West. There was continuous light rain from 1000 GMT until 1900 GMT and on the mountains this led to snow melting at all but the highest levels. The temperature had risen to 5.8C at 1930 GMT before starting to fall. Precipitation was of rain here, but in the Midlands and SE England there were heavy falls of snow (15 cm reported in places) with considerable disruption to travel. {Scilly 10.1C, Milford Haven 8.9C, Cluanie Inn 29.2 mm, Haverfordwest 21.8 mm, Odiham 4.9h} [Rain 9.9 mm; Max 5.8C; Min -3.0C; Grass -5.9C]
5th: Calm under low stratiform cloud layer, misty with moderate to good visibility. The ground was partially frozen, but softer on top and water baths were ice free. Gnats were hovering near the Stevenson screen and as the cloud thinned the morning became brighter. The afternoon kept mostly cloudy with weak sunshine and one brief spell of clear sunshine. The soil in the afternoon was workable so I managed to plant out a row of new raspberry plants that had been delivered from suppliers in Kent. Malling Leo, a tall and robust variety that we have grown successfully here in previous years. John Burson reported seeing his first red kite at his site in the Conwy Valley today. Perhaps one will make its way over to Anglesey and reach Llansadwrn. {Scilly 9.6C/ Bramham -9.8C, Milford Haven 9.1C/Sennybridge -2.0C, Tredegar 12.4 mm, Bala 1.2h} [Rain 1.5 mm; Max 9.5C; Min 1.9C; Grass -1.4C]
6th: Pressure was 1033 mb in a ridge extending from high 1041 mb W of Iberia. Overcast and calm with increasingly dense moderate fog. Warms fronts were over western Britain while colder weather remained to the south-east. It was dull all day with a few spots of rain around 1300 GMT, then with fog increasing with visibility < 100 m by late afternoon and evening. Daffodils are opening slowly on 'peacock hill'. These are usually some of the first to open in Llansadwrn, there are none in the garden yet being well behind those seen in SW Anglesey on 16th January. Around 2230 GMT there was a Luna halo, and with air temperature falling to near freezing point, there were ice crystals in the air. Soon after visibility improved with clear view of the almost full bright moon. {Helens Bay 11.0C/ Church Fenton -8.5C, Usk 9.7C/ -0.8C, Valley 1.5h} [Rain 0.3 mm; Max 7.2C; Min 3.2C; Grass 0.8C]
7th: With the sky clear overnight the air temperature had fallen to -0.9C and on the grass that was covered with white with frost -4.1C. There was frost deposition on the raingauges and some tall vegetation. Frost deposition, since 2230 GMT yesterday, was a water equivalent of 0.2 mm. A sunny morning, some scattered clouds then a clear sky with the temperature rising to 7.6C before turning cloudier for a while. The evening and night were clear with little or no wind. Cold in the SE of England with the temperature at Manston in Kent not rising above -1.2C during the day. {Scilly 9.7C, Llansadwrn 7.6C, Llanfairfechan 7.5C, Porthmadog 7.3C, /Aboyne -9.7C, Wattisham 8.8h, Aberporth 7.3h, Valley 6.6h} [Pptn tr frost; Max 7.6C; Min -0.9C; Grass -4.1C]
8th: A bright sunny morning with much cirrus and a little altocumulus in the sky. The air temperature had fallen to -3.8C and to -7.4C on the grass and water in the water baths was frozen solid. Frost deposition was 0.13 mm. Weak sunshine at first with good visibility and moderate smoke haze, sunny in the afternoon when mostly clear skies the clear and calm conditions extending into the evening. Moles have been very active along the grass verge of the A5025 towards Four Crosses. Extensive hills have been thrown up along the roadside, but there are few in the fields. {Aultbea 8.5C/ Church Fenton -11.8C, Tiree 14 mm, Camborne 7.4h, Aberporth 7.2h} [Rain trace; Max 5.8C; Min -3.8C; Grass -7.4C]
9th: Pressure had fallen to 1038 mb with high 1041 mb over Cornwall. The sky was overcast with a warm front lingering over the N Ireland, the Irish Sea and S Scotland. The temperature at 09 GMT was 1.5C (dewpoint -0.4C) with a 70% chance of ice precipitation. There was a little precipitation here during the morning, rain at low levels, but of snow on the high mountains, as the front moved SE. Freezing rain and snow from N England southwards caused many problems on the roads, there were several accidents on the M6 (Pennines). Temperatures in many parts of England did not get above freezing all day (High Wycombe -1.2C) whereas here in the north-west the temperature at noon was 3.4C (7.5C in Llanfairfechan at 1610 GMT, it was 4.3C here) and continued to rise through the afternoon and evening reaching 5.4C at midnight. Light rain fell almost continuously from mid-afternoon accumulating 12.5 mm over 17.8 h duration by 09 GMT on the 10th, the largest daily fall of the month {Castlederg 10.1C/ Linton-on-Ouse -9.6C, Sennybridge -6.9C, Islay 24 mm, ,} [Rain 12.5 mm; Max 6.0C; Min -2.3C; Grass -5.9C]
10th: The temperature had reached 6.0C at 0150 GMT and by morning it was 5.5C. Under low stratiform cloud in heavy drizzle and light rain visibility was <200 m (fog) but thinning a little. Drizzle in the morning becoming drier in the afternoon, but kept dull under cloud that was slow to lift. {Magilligan (N Ireland) 11.4C/ Houghton Hall (Norfolk) -7.9C, Llanfairfechan 7.3C 0010z, Valley 6.4C/ Lake Vyrnwy -1.2C , Pembrey Sands 14.4 mm, Valley 0.0h} [Rain 1.7 mm; Max 6.3C; Min 1.5C; Grass 1.6C]
11th: Overcast with fine drizzle the temperature 2.2C at its lowest for the past 24-h at 09 GMT. While Tiree reported a minimum of 6.8C overnight temperatures <10C were widely experienced in SE England with the -15.6C in Holbeach being 22.4C lower. With pressure 1034 mb rising slowly we were beneath wavy frontal systems between Atlantic-high 1036 mb, developed W of Ireland, and high 1040 mb over Denmark. Drizzle died out during the morning giving a dry, but very dull afternoon cloud keeping low and visibility poor to moderate. A bullfinch was seen taking buds on the plum tree in the garden today. Less plums perhaps this summer? Keeping very cold in S England and Europe the France v Ireland rugby match in Paris was cancelled 2 minutes before the kick-off at 9 pm due to the frozen surface of the pitch being one of the few modern stadia without under-grass heating. In the past large amounts of straw were put on pitches to keep the ground unfrozen before matches.{Castlederg 10.5C/ Holbeach -15.6C, Milford Haven 4.9C/ Tredegar -6.4C, Lyneham 9.0h, St Athan 8.5h} [Rain 0.3 mm; Max 4.5C; Min 2.2C; Grass 1.7C]
12th: A dull and damp morning. Pressure was 1037 mb with a high established over Cornwall. Keeping cold in the SE where overnight minimum temperatures were <10C in places. Here, the temperature at 09 GMT was 4.5C with no ground frost either. Overcast skies with poor visibility and little or no wind, but drier in the afternoon. On a walk to check on the daffodils on 'peacock hill' they are opening, but very slowly. There are none in the garden here yet. {Milford Haven 9.2C/ Cavendish -12.7C, Usk2 -3.9C, Kinloss 5.4h, Bala 1/1h} [Rain 0.4 mm; Max 7.1C; Min 2.0C; Grass 2.0C]
13th: Overcast after recent slight rain and the sky was looking a little less dull at 0900 GMT, but in moderate to good visibility more rain was in sight and soon there were a few spots. With Atlantic-high 1044 mb to the SW pressure 1031 mb was falling quickly and there was a WNW'ly flow around the high. The jetstream was re-established over northern Britain. There was some weak sunshine later in the afternoon as the wind veered to the north. {Cardiff 9.2C, Aberporth 0.2h} [Rain 0.2 mm; Max 7.3C; Min 3.7C; Grass -0.2C]
14th: Overcast, although there were some lighter patches, with moderate hazy visibility. An almost dry day, there was some drizzle later in the day especially around exposed headlands. [Rain trace; Max 8.1C; Min 5.2C; Grass 3.9C]
15th: Much of the same, overcast with recent and current fine spots of drizzle or rain. Cloud was hugging the mountaintops of Snowdon and was lowest in the west. Pressure 1031 mb was rising slowly between Atlantic-high 1045 mb and low 978 mb over the Baltic giving us a light northerly airflow of Atlantic air. Winds were strong over the North Sea. There was little variation in temperature the 7.4C (dewpoint 5.9C) at 09 GMT rising to just 8.3C by the 16th. [Rain 0.8 mm; Max 8.3C; Min 6.5C; Grass 5.4C]
16th: A very damp morning with condensate on the glass of thermometers in the Stevenson screen. Pressure was steady on 1029 mb. The day continued dull with slight rain or drizzle most of the time. {Leuchars 13.5C & 6.5h, Cardiff 11.7C, Resallach 25.6 mm} [Rain 2.6 mm; Max 8.3C; Min 3.1C; Grass -0.2C]
17th: Continuing with little temperature variation under low stratiform cloud and fog. There had been drizzle and slight rain since midnight and the day was no different. Strengthening winds later in the day (gust 33 mph at 2353 GMT) as pressure fell to 1013 mb at midnight. {Llanfairfechan 10.8C 1840z} [Rain 7.4 mm; Max 9.3C; Min 6.1C; Grass 5.6C]
18th: A wet morning as a cold front passed over the gusty wind 39 mph at 0542 GMT falling away and a burst of heavy rain 8 mm/ h at 0744 GMT, but on the mountain upslope at Nantlle 62 mm /h fell at 0753 GMT. The soil was waterlogged and small pools of standing water. Rain at first on the mountains, the temperature here 5.3C at 0900 GMT, but cold enough for light snow to fall above 2000 ft during the morning as the temperature fell rapidly. Some sunny spells as the front cleared, the afternoon was sunny with cumulus clouds seen in the vicinity. {Gravesend 11.6C, Tulloch Bridge 25 mm} [Rain 1.6 mm; Max 8.8C; Min 5.3C; Grass 5.1C]
Types of hail. Click for pop-up explanation. 19th: A bright start with snow pellets lying on the ground at 09 GMT. Showers in the night and with the temperature on the grass -2.0C it was icy underfoot. A little sunshine earlier, the with convective clouds in the vicinity turning cloudier with frequent showers including snow pellets at 0955 GMT and hard snow grains at 1048 GMT. Sunny spells in the afternoon as showers died out the sky clearing during the evening. {Cardiff 9.8C, Manston 9.8h, Aberporth 6.2h} [Rain 0.8 mm; Max 8.9C; Min 0.3C; Grass -2.0C]
20th: There was a red sky in the east towards Conwy at 0730 GMT, but overcast here with moderately high cloud above the mountaintops. Thinly lying snow was seen at 2500 ft and was lower nearer 1500 ft at Ogwen. Snow looked moderately deep on the flatter tops of the Carneddau. There was a moderate SSW'ly breeze and some spots of rain came along by 0920 GMT. Windy with bright spells and a glimpse of sunshine around noon. A dry afternoon then rain, but less windy, from 1500 to 2000 GMT. {Lossiemouth 13.7C/ Hurn -7.2C, Cluanie Inn 35.2 mm, Charlwood 6.9h} [Rain 6.3 mm; Max 8.3C; Min 1.2C; Grass -1.8C]
21st: Under low stratiform cloud there was moderate fog at 0900 GMT. Heavy drizzle was driving across the fields with spells of light rain during the morning. There was a brief clear spell when the sun came out giving a spike in solar radiation and temperature; the sun becomes increasingly strong as it gets higher in the sky this month. The afternoon, though overcast, was dry at first before drizzle and light rain encroached by 1600 GMT. Strengthening winds again during the evening. {Kinloss 14.2C, Hawarden 13.2C, Cluanie Inn 44.2 mm, Wattisham 6.3h, Valley 0.8h} [Rain 9.9 mm; Max 10.6C; Min 6.3C; Grass 5.7C]
22nd: Gales force 8 winds around coasts and headlands. One of those mornings when doing the obs proves difficult. A strong SW'ly wind with heavy rain and very poor visibility. There were pools of water standing around the garden and a trickle was crossing from higher round reaching the road that already had streams along the edges. A speed restriction of 30 mph was in force on the Britannia Bridge through the morning; a gust of 52 mph was reported at Valley, 43 mph was recorded at Gorwel Heights, Llanfairfechan at 0950 GMT and 41 mph here at 1323 GMT. In Upper Bangor, with blocked drains in College Road, traffic was passing through several inches of water at 1030 GMT. Rain and wind eased in the afternoon, but there was thick fog by 1500 GMT. I spotted the first flowers of the glory of the snow on the rockery banks. These delicate alpine Chiondoxa usually appear here just as the snow disappears from the mountains! Groups of small species daffodils are now in flower on the edge of the lawn. {Aboyne 15.7C, Rhyl 14.0C, Capel Curig 53.2 mm, Herstmonceux 1.6h} [Rain 8.4 mm; Max 11.0C; Min 8.0C; Grass 8.2C]
23rd: The temperature at midnight was 10.1C and the sky was overcast at dawn, but began to clear before 09 GMT. As I went outside for the obs I was greeted with loud twittering. A large flock of starlings were in the trees and being disturbed flew away with a rushing sound of their flight to the nearby field to begin feeding. They sometimes come into the garden, but not today. With high 1035 mb over Spain and low 970 mb S Iceland we were in a warm 'tropical' airstream from the Azores. Overnight the air temperature had not fallen below 8.5C the temperature just after 09 GMT yesterday, highest daily minimum of the month, and the temperature was 11.0C, the highest of the past 24-h. Bright and then sunny by noon the temperature rose to 14.2C, but at Gorwel Heights in Llanfairfechan 17.2C was reached both highest of the month. The sunny afternoon was spoiled by sea fog encroaching by 1430 GMT resulting in the temperature falling away quickly to 9.3C. The fog cleared away again later in the afternoon. {Coleshill 18.7C, Llanfairfechan 17.2C, Hawarden 16.7C, Cluanie Inn 12.4 mm, Wattisham 8.7h, Aberporth 4.0h}[Rain tr; Max 14.2C; Min 8.5C; Grass 8.0C]
24th: Fog at 0700 GMT soon clearing, but the sky remained overcast. There was light drizzle at 0900 GMT with cloud low on mainland mountain slopes. Pressure 1025 mb was rising slowly with high 1031 Bay of Biscay and low 976 mb mid-Norwegian Sea. With a slow moving cold front to the NW it was a dull morning with drizzle turning to light rain before petering out by 1130 GMT, there was a short sunny spell around noon. The afternoon and evening were mostly cloudy. {Manston 15.6C, Usk2 14.9C, Kinlochewe 9.8 mm, Leuchars 8.7h} [Rain 0.6 mm; Max 10.8C; Min 8.2C; Grass 7.6C]
25th: A touch of ground frost overnight and there was moderate dew on the grass. Cloud was moderately high and fairly thin so the morning was bright. Tits around the garden were showing great interest in the nesting boxes popping inside to inspect. The blue flowers of Lithospermum (Lithodora diffusa) on the rocky bank were still flowering profusely. Wild garlic leaves are now 10 cm tall and bluebells 15 - 20 cm tall in the wood. A vole had taken up residence under the cover of the lysimeter receiver vessel. The afternoon had some sunny spells and the evening and night kept mostly cloudy and dry. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 9.8C; Min 3.6C; Grass -0.2C]
Jew's Ear fungus growing on elder. 26th: Overcast and dull until afternoon when brighter with glimpses of sunshine; maximum temperature 11.3C. The vole was still hiding under the lysimeter cover. Cloudier at the end of the afternoon and evening when there was a little light rain. I found a Jew's Ear fungus in perfect condition growing on elder in the wood ( left). Gelatinous when moist, about 10 cm, looks just like an ear and said to be good to eat. For reverse view click here Reverse view of Auricularia auricula on elder. . {Fyvie Castle 14.5C, Kinlochewe 10.6 mm, Lyneham 10.6h} [Rain 0.6 mm; Max 11.3C; Min 4.4C; Grass 0.5C]
27th: A misty-moisty morning with fog increasing and slight drizzle at 09 GMT. The vole had been caught overnight in a Longworth trap and was released in a more appropriate part of the garden! A dull sunless day with drizzle or light rain and poor visibility; there was little or no wind. A sparrowhawk passed by the feeders before dusk scattering the birds, but caught nothing. {Tain Ridge 15.2C, Leconfield 0.7h} [Rain 1.4 mm; Max 9.8C; Min 6.6C; Grass 6.6C]
28th: Another dull morning with low stratiform cloud and moderate fog. Keeping mild for February the temperature this morning 9.5C and 100% relative humidity. High 1027 mb was anchored over France and pressure here 1024 mb was rising slowly. The afternoon was brighter with 2 spells of sunshine as the cloud lifted from the mountains. A narrow ribbon of cloud was left hanging about 2500 ft along the Carneddau Mountains persisting, but varying in depth along its length. There was an almost complete absence of snow on the mountains, just a small patch left. Started digging the vegetable plot, the soil was reasonably friable and not too heavy to work. {Durham 17.4C, Hawarden 14.0C, Leconfield 7.7h} [Rain 0.1 mm; Max 11.5C; Min 8.0C; Grass 8.0C]
29th: It's Leap year, so an extra day starting off overcast and dull, but brightening up with sunny spells coming along before noon. Bright and breezy in the afternoon with some more sunny spells. Hedge cutting and more digging of the vegetable plot. Snow was absent on the Snowdonia Mountains. Hardly any rain anywhere today; lawnmowers were in use in Llanfairfechan. {Hereford 16.3C, Cardiff 16.1C, St Athan 7.6h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 12.0C; Min 7.6C; Grass 7.2C]

The month ended with rainfall totalling 67.4 mm (85%) & [86%] of averages, driest since 2010 and ranking 41 since 1928. The mean temperature was 5.6C, lowest since 2010, spot on the decadal average and [+0.4] on the 1981-2010 climatological average.


Theresa wearing a daffodil on St David's Day. Peacock butterfly on 'winter red' heather. 1st: DYDD DEWI SANT: The were bright orangy colours in the sky in the east at 07 GMT, a little sunshine. Unlike last year there are a few daffodils just out in the garden for St David's Day. The morning soon became overcast and increasingly murky as a finger of Saharan dust moved over the Irish Sea off the Atlantic from Iberia. Pressure 1025 mb was slowly rising in a ridge from high 1027 mb over the English Channel while Atlantic-low 962 mb was W of Ireland with associated cold front W Ireland to NW Scotland. Not a bad day for work in the garden as it kept dry and was brighter at times, the grass was cut for the first time and some more digging of the vegetable plot. {Herstmonceux 16.7C & 9.3h, Strathallen 10.2 mm} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 11.8C; Min 6.5C; Grass 3.3C]
2nd: A sunny calm morning with just 1 okta cloud cover and good slightly hazy visibility. There was some mist in the Menai Strait this soon clearing. With the temperature rising to 15.3C in the afternoon honey bees and several large bumblebees were on the heather banks in the garden. A a red admiral and a peacock butterfly were also seen. {Gogarddan 15.4C, Levens Hall 6.0 mm, Aberporth 9.4h} [Rain 0.7 mm; Max 15.3C; Min 5.8C; Grass 2.3C]
3rd: Low 994 mb was W of Malin Head and an associated cold frost was moving over the Irish Sea. After a shower of rain at 0630 GMT the sky was clearing rapidly at 09 GMT and it was a bright morning with a few sunny spells. The cloudier afternoon kept dry with a little sunshine at times. {Northolt 15.3C, Llanfairfechan 16.4 mm, St Athan 8.6h} [Rain 8.9 mm; Max 10.8C; Min 6.3C; Grass 1.3C]
Snow on the Carneddau Mountains.

4th: A trough of low pressure moved eastward off the Irish Sea during the night bringing showery precipitation after midnight, snow pellets were recorded in Llansadwrn; in Llanfairfechan (with heavy bursts between 15 to 21 mm/h) 16.4 mm were recorded in the 24-h to 09 GMT this morning. Temperatures were low enough for the precipitation to fall as snow above 800 ft on the N-facing slopes of the Carneddau Mountains and in Ogwen Valley at 1000 ft. Mostly cloudy at first bright and sunny spells developing by afternoon and ground frost by evening. {St James Park 10.2C/ Loch Glascarnoch -3.1C, Hurn 26.8 mm, Aldergrove 8.3h} [Rain trace dew; Max 8.5C; Min 2.5C; Grass 2.0C]
5th: Variable amounts of cloud after midnight, little in the way of frost on the ground by morning although the grass minimum had fallen to -2.7C the previous evening. A moderate to heavy dewfall overnight. A calm morning, or occasional light breezes from the NE. A bright morning with long spells of sunshine in the afternoon the sky clearing by evening. Some honey bees and large bumblebees were about again for a while in warmest part the afternoon. Buds on willow trees are opening as are horse-chestnut with dwarf yellow candles high up on the trees. Buds on early sycamore trees are large and green, but no leaves yet. The best of the weather in the north-west again today, a frontal-wave low gave a wet cold day with strong to gale-force winds in Thanet and the SE of England. {Killowen 11.9C, Norwich AP 29.0 mm, Glasgow 10.1h}[Rain tr dew; Max 9.4C; Min 1.2C; Grass -2.7C]
Snow between Garnedd Uchaf and Carnedd Llewelyn. 6th: Overnight the minimum air temperature was 1.1C, lowest of the month. There was an extensive white frost on the fields at dawn, the grass min had fallen to -3.0C, lowest of the month, but most had melted by 09 GMT. Pressure was 1026 mb in a ridge of high pressure from high 1033 mb over Spain. A fine sunny morning to start the day, but as low 976 mb SW Iceland moved closer and deepen (961 mb at noon) pressure began to fall and the afternoon, though keeping dry, was cloudier and windier. Snow on the mountains from the 4th was retreating rapidly; that remaining at 1300 GMT on the tops of the Carneddau between C. Gwenllian and C. Llewelyn was photographed in a spell of brief sunshine. At 1800 GMT pressure 1019 mb was falling rapidly. {Hawarden 11.9C, West Freugh 13.6 mm, Brize Norton 10.2h} [Rain 7.6 mm; Max 9.6C; Min 1.1C; Grass -3.0C]
7th: Overnight rain on a warm front had left the ground very wet and muddy, but a weak cold front had passed over just before 07 GMT and the sky was starting to clear at 0900 GMT. Pressure 1011 mb was rising rapidly and the morning was soon sunny although visibility was moderate. The afternoon was cloudier as convective cumulus clouds moved across off the Irish Sea on a light to moderate W'ly breeze. I could not see any snow left on the mountains at noon. We had a light shower of wet 4 - 5 mm snow pellets at 1420 GMT, then some more sunshine as the sky became clearer by the end of the afternoon with a ground frost developing in the evening. {Llanfairfechan 12.2 (0250z), Cardiff 12.0C, Capel Curig 24.4 mm, Valley 7.8h} [Pptn trace; Max 10.2C; Min 4.9C; Grass 3.4C]
8th: Variable amounts of cloud from few to scattered overnight. Any frost on the grass at melted by 0900 GMT. The sky was almost clear and there was weak sunshine before more clouds came along within the hour. Pressure 1030 mb was still rising slowly with high 1037 mb over the Bay of Biscay and deep low 968 mb over the Denmark Strait between Greenland and Iceland. With thin wavy (orographic) cloud the afternoon was bright. {Usk2 12.7C, Manston 10.0h, Aberporth 4.9h} [Rain 0.8 mm; Max 10.2C; Min 2.9C; Grass -1.4C]
9th: Overcast with moderate fog at first decreasing by 0900 GMT. There had been drizzle, heavy at times, during the past 2 hours and fine drizzle ceased within an hour. The morning kept dull, the afternoon was brighter with a glimpse of sunshine before cloud thickened once again. The best of the sunshine was in the N and W today. {Aboyne 16.4C, Hawarden 14.6C Llanfairfechan 14.4C, Kinlochewe 38.8 mm, Leuchars 6.2h, Valley 4.0h} [Pptn 0.1 mm; Max 12.7C; Min 6.0C; Grass 5.2C]
10th: Dull at first, but a patch of blue sky over Red Wharf Bay and Llandudno spread across to Llansadwrn after 09 GMT. Pressure 1037 mb was rising slowly with high 1040 mb over the Bay of Biscay and France. A little brightness with brief sunshine in the afternoon before the cloud closed over again. {Usk2 17.7C, Leconfield 9.3h, Aberporth 4.6h} [Pptn tr dw; Max 14.3C; Min 8.5C; Grass 7.5C]
11th: Fog and shallow fog at 07 GMT soon clearing in a very light SW'ly breeze with a short bright spell with a glimpse of sunshine, but by 0900 GMT overcast again with moderate misty visibility. There had been heavy dew and with the fog the grass was very wet. Overcast, warm enough in the afternoon for honeybees to be out joining the large bumblebees that are seen all day long. Blackbirds have started to sing again during the day, the thrushes seem to sing at dawn and at dusk. Moderate fog developed again late afternoon and early evening before lifting. {Nottingham 18.6C, Boulmer 10.7h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 11.6C; Min 7.0C; Grass 3.3C]
12th: Overcast with moderate hazy visibility. Calm. Pressure was 1036 mb within the high stationed over North Wales. The day remained overcast and sunless, but dry with little or no wind. Where cloud cleared in the E and S temperatures reached up to 18.1C. {Hertsmonceux 18.1C, Tredegar 17.0C, Leeming 10.2h, Bala 4.3h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 9.8C; Min 6.9C; Grass 6.6C]
13th: Under low sheets of stratocumulus cloud it was overcast and dull, but the mountaintops of Snowdonia over 2000 ft were in the clear in bright sunshine most of the day. Pressure was steady on 1035 mb and it was calm. The day was sunless here, the temperature at 09 GMT was 6.9C and only rose to 8.0C during the day, lowest of the month. In places to the E and S where the cloud cleared temperatures reached 15.3C in S Wales. {Tredegar 15.3C, Woodford 3.9h, Bala 2.7h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 8.0C; Min 6.2C; Grass 5.1C]
14th: Pressure had weakened and was steady on 1031 mb as the high 1033 mb slipped away eastward towards E Anglia. Another overcast and dull morning, again the mountaintops were above the cloud and it was sunny in Llanberis and at Bala where there were 7.7h of bright sunshine. It was bright for a while early in the afternoon, but there was no sunshine for the 3rd day. {Wisley 14.0C, Sennybridge 11.5C, Bala 7.7h}.[Rain 0.1 mm; Max 10.6C; Min 5.5C; Grass 5.3C]
15th: More of the same, but the cloud had been thick enough for a little drizzle to fall before 09 GMT. The sheets of stratocumulus remained covering western coastal areas all day. The mountaintops started the day in bright sunshine, but hill fog had developed by 0930 GMT. Visibility was very poor, sometimes 500 m (moderate fog) with spells of fine drizzle, not wetting the ground, during the early afternoon. Yet another sunless day here the day time temperature struggling to reach 8.0C here and 9.1C in Llanfairfechan. A little brighter, but no sunshine, later in the afternoon when the wind began to pick up. With the high pressure 1033 mb slipping away over SE Europe fronts, associated with complex low pressure to the NW (985 mb S Iceland), were encroaching SW Scotland and the Western Isles by evening. {Gravesend 19.0C, Cardiff 9.6C, Manston 9.3h} [Rain trace; Max 9.4C; Min 5.8C; Grass 5.5C]
16th: Much of the same, overcast and dull, but it was windier the SW'ly force 3/4 at 09 GMT. The sky was lighter in the E, but cloud was low on hills in the W. Pressure 1016 mb was falling with complex lows 997 mb Iceland and N Scotland. A wavy cold front stretched from Scotland through Dublin and over the Celtic Sea and reached Anglesey by 1800 GMT. There was drizzle and light rain here during the afternoon, but it was dry in Caernarfon, before light rain from 1700 GMT (heaviest around 20 GMT and 23 GMT) through to midnight. Rainfall of 13.3 mm was largest of the month. There is very little ice left on the Baltic Gulf of Bothnia this spring, that remaining was in the N near Kemi. {Fyvie Castle 15.6C, Hawarden 14.4C, Llanfairfechan 14.0C, Tyndrum 25.2 mm, Church Fenton 4.3h} [Rain 13.3 mm; Max 9.7C; Min 6.6C; Grass 4.1C]
One of the first bluebells in the wood. 17th: A mistle thrush was singing at 06 GMT and with a bright morning there were signs of the sky clearing in the hour before 09 GMT. In the better light this morning trees across the fields have begun to take on a greenish hue as buds break. The first bluebells to appear in the wood this year were spotted. Pressure was steady on 1011 mb as the cold front moved eastward, but shower troughs associated with another disturbance over Ireland were moving across the Irish Sea. A little sunshine than a moderate to heavy (up to 11 mm/h) shower of rain and small ice pellets arrived at 1135 GMT. There were further showers between sunny spells in the afternoon, at 1501 GMT rain fell at a rate up to 14 mm/h. Precipitation falling on the Snowdonia Mountains fell as snow above 2500 ft. Not a day for being out of doors, but it did not matter as I watched the rugby match on TV from Cardiff (maximum temperature 12.4C), Wales beat France 16 - 9 to take the Championship and Grand Slam. Tawny owls were about in the wood at 2200 GMT. {Hereford 13.4C, Okehampton 16.6 mm, Leuchars 10.3h} [Rain 7.1 mm; Max 11.0C; Min 4.9C; Grass 1.5C]
18th: A moderate shower of rain at 0523 GMT, the hailometer was unmarked. A sunny start with the sky clearing, but it was feeling fresh in the force 2/3 N'ly breeze. There had been a touch of ground frost (-0.8C) and there was light snow lying above 2500 ft on the Carneddau Mountains this morning. Pressure 1017 mb was rising quickly as Atlantic-high 1034 mb off Iberia intensified with a ridge extending to SW Ireland. Coastal areas bordering the Irish Sea had the best of the sunshine today with Morecambe Bay reporting 10.7 h. It was sunny most of the day here although temperatures were on the cool side with the N'ly breeze persisting until 1930 GMT when it veered SW'ly. A clear evening with the owls about from dusk. {Stormont Castle 13.5C, Gringeley on the Hill 27.4 mm, Morecambe Bay 10.7h, Valley 10.3h} [Rain trace; Max 10.1 C; Min 3.7C; Grass -0.8C]
19th: I saw white frost on the fields earlier, but it had all melted by 09 GMT. A sunny morning and a newly arrived chiffchaff was singing weakly nearby; 5 days earlier than last year on 24 March 2011. Just a little cloud, a few cumulus were bubbling up over the mountains and there were some contrails. Pressure 1032 mb was rising slowly with high 1037 mb over the Bay of Biscay and low 971 mb was over the Denmark Strait with associated fronts lying to the NW of here. A sunny morning turning cloudier in the afternoon catching the edge of a warm front affecting W Scotland where there was a wet day. {Killowen 14.6C, Kinlochewe 31.0 mm, Bristol 11.1h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 11.7C; Min 1.9C; Grass -2.9C]
Alexanders flowering on roadside at the old Almshouses. Scurvy grass at Pont Cefn Coch. 20th: A mostly cloudy morning mostly moderately high altostratus thinning to give some bright spells with weak sunshine during the morning with very good visibility. High 1039 mb over Biscay and near Brest was moving north-eastwards while complex lows lay to the north-west of here with pressure on 1034 mb. There were some sunny spells in the afternoon although some thicker clouds could be seen in the west. A mass of ivy-leaved scurvy grass Cochleria danica was seen on the roadside Cochleria danica at Pont Cefn Coch, Llansadwrn. on the way to Beaumaris as were Alexanders Smyrnium olusatrum in full flower on the roadside at the Old Almshouses ( 3 weeks earlier than in 2011). [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 14.6C; Min 6.7C; Grass 4.2C]
21st: An overcast morning, but the rested chiffchaff was singing more strongly. Pressure was steady on 1035 mb , the large high stretching from Austria 1040 mb to S Wales 1035 mb while low 978 mb was over the Denmark Strait. The day kept dull with little, or no wind. Keeping mostly cloudy, Valley reported 1.3h sunshine, the cloudbase lifted to be well over the mountaintops by afternoon and with good visibility no snow was seen. {Aberdeen 18.2C, Isle of Skye 9.6 mm, Manston 11.4h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 10.6C; Min 7.8C; Grass 6.5C]
Snow covered lake at Whistler Mountain, Canada.

Plenty of snow: Skiers setting out on Whistler Mountain. With small amounts of snow on Welsh mountains this season, it is good to know that things are different elsewhere (photo above). Whistler Mountain near Vancouver in Canada has some of the heaviest snow falls in North America. Moisture laden air off the Pacific when rising over mountains of the Pacific North West of Canada in winter precipitates as snow. Snow depths are recorded at Pig Alley Weather Station at 5445 ft, when added up depths of fresh snow recorded daily since 1979, amount to an average of 34.1 ft per year. Cable car descending through pine forest at Whistler Mountain. During the last decade snow has averaged 38.3 ft and this year has seen even more with 41 ft, so far. Usually March, along with April, have less snow, but this March there has been more snow than usual with over 13.3 ft approaching the record of 16.4 ft in the 1973/74 season. Whistler is a popular skiing resort and in 2009/10 season hosted the Winter Olympic Games; the longest ski run is over 7 miles. Whistler summit is 7160 ft, where temperatures this week were about -11C, but down in The Village at 2214 ft temperatures were around -1 to +2C during the day. There are some superb mountain ecosystems in the vicinity including pine, ancient cedar forest on Cougar Mountain, and alpine meadows that are a glorious sight in summer. .

22nd: Scattered clouds and a milky blue sky with a light E'ly breeze. Earlier some patches of mist in the Menai Strait and at 0900 GMT visibility was poor with moderate haze and weak sunshine. High 1036 mb was over the North Sea and covering an area south-eastwards to Austria. The day was mostly cloudy, but bright at times. Sometimes the breeze was SE'ly, the temperature rising to 15.6C and relative humidity falling to 45%. No rain. {Aberdeen 18.2C, Isle of Skye 9.6 mm, Manston 11.4h} [Rain trace; Max 15.6C; Min 4.5C; Grass -0.6C]
23rd: There were a few spots of rain around 07 GMT enough to moisten the ground. By 09 GMT most of this had dried off concrete with a trace remaining in the raingauge There was a moderate deposit of a dark dust having lighter coloured undertones. The high 1033 mb had drifted across the North Sea and was over Norway while complex lows 962 mb were near S Greenland. Fog, slow to clear, was affecting parts of southern England. Visibility was poor here with moderate haze, but the day was bright with weak sunshine. The first white flowers of blackthorn were seen in a hedgerow on the A5025 in Llansadwrn.. Several fields around the village were being ploughed today. {Otterbourne WW 20.1C/ Ravensworth -4.2C, Cardinham 4.2 mm, Leuchars 11.1h}[Rain 0.0 mm; Max 17.5C; Min 8.4C; Grass 5.7C]
Snake's Head Fritillaries growing in the garden. 24th: A sunny morning with a little cirrostratus cloud and expanded contrails in the sky to the north-east. A moderate to heavy dew with traces of condensation on the black coloured Davis raingauge, but not on the copper gauge. There was less haze this morning and visibility was good or very good. Pressure was 1027 mb with high 1031 mb was still over the North Sea and a large deep low 953 mb was S of Greenland. A further dry deposit of darkish grey dust with a light coloured undertone had occurred in the past 24-h. Dense fog in parts of central England early in the day; likely to have contributed to cause of an accident on the M5 involving many vehicles in which 2 people died and 40 injured.. Sunny all day here, with a light E or SE'ly breeze the temperature rose to 22.1C, highest of the month and year so far. The highest temperature recorded here in March was 23.0C on 20 March 2006. The Snake's Head Fritillaries growing in the garden meadow are flowering early. Last year we had just one or two flowers because they were all eaten by a family of pheasants. This year they were fenced, but the semi-resident male has shown no interest, so far. Some primroses have flowered throughout the winter, now there are many on the rockery banks Primroses are massed on  rockery banks. . Blackthorn is now flowering profusely in hedgerows in Llansadwrn and on the mainland along the A55 from the Britannia Bridge. A mass of ivy leaved scurvy grass was also seen along the roadside of the A55 near Llanfairfechan. Haze increased again by evening and there was a purplish coloured sky at sunset. Bats were about at dusk and later, both pipistrelle and brown long-eared bats were seen. {Porthmadog 22.2, Aberporth 11.0h, Valley 10.3h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 22.1C; Min 6.7C; Grass 2.4C]
Meteosat MSG image (c) EUMETSAT at 12 GMT on 25 Mar 2012, courtesy of Ferdinand Valk. 25th: Patchy cirrus and cirrostratus clouds to the S with a veil over the sun, but clearer sky to the north. Visibility was poor a combination of Saharan dust and pollutant aerosols, but another warm day with hazy sunshine. The surface soil of the tilled vegetable plot was looking dry as I planted early potatoes Aran Pilot. A pair of treecreepers were constantly going up and down trunks of sycamore trees nearby. The best of the warmth and sunshine were in the N and W again with a record Scottish March temperature of 22.8C recorded at Fyvie Castle. In contrast in SE England with fog off the North Sea the maximum temperature at Manston was just 6.3C. Unusually most of Europe was cloud free (see satellite image left) this resulting in a remarkably widespread area of numbers of hours of sunshine ( Number of hours of sunshine across Europe. 10 hours, or more, in many places). {Fyvie Castle 22.8C, Gogarddan 20.7C, lo max Manston 6.3C, Hawarden 1.2 mm, Aberporth 11.4h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 19.0C; Min 9.2C; Grass 5.1C]
26th: After a bright orange pre-sunrise in the direction of Conwy a clear blue sky and calm, visibility was very good any dust and pollutant aerosols having moved away for the moment. Pressure was 1036 mb with the high 1038 mb over Britain and the southern North Sea. The temperature at 09 GMT was a pleasant 14.3C and in the sunny warm day rose to 21.8C. Female orange tip butterflies were seen in the garden. In Scotland records continue to be broken with a maximum of 22.9C recorded in Aboyne. To remind us what time of year it is in some low lying places overnight there was frost; Bala reported -1.2C while Ravensworth (Yorkshire) had -3.0C. {Aboyne 22.9C/ Ravensworth -3.3C, Manston 0.2 mm, Morecambe 12.1h}, [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 21.8C; Min 7.7C; Grass 2.6C]
27th: Clear skies with very good visibility and slight haze. It was sunny all day in common with most of Europe, haze increased during the afternoon. With the temperature rising to 20.1C a holly blue butterfly was spotted. Leaves on horse chestnut were opening apace with the tops of trees looking very green. More bluebells had appeared in the wood in numbers greater than normal at this time of year. {Aboyne 23.6C, Altnaharra -3.6C, Aberporth 12.2h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 20.1C; Min 9.0C; Grass 3.2C]
28th: A calm and clear night with the high 1037 mb centred over Wales at midnight. Another clear sky morning the air minimum temperature no lower than 7.3C and on the grass 2.3C. There was moderate dew and visibility was good with smoke haze. A sunny day, rising at 0610 GMT over Conwy and setting 1820 GMT over 12 hours of bright sunshine. Buds of plum and damson were bursting open with one or two flowers already open. A clear evening and night with little or no wind. {St James Park 22.8C/ Katesbridge -3.0C, Aberporth 12.1h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 20.5C; Min 7.3C; Grass 2.3C]
29th: High 1035 mb had drifted W of Ireland to be over the Atlantic and cooler air and cloud from the NW was being drawn S across Britain. At 09 GMT there were 6 oktas of moderately high altostratus and high cirrus clouds, the first cloud for a remarkable 3-day spell of clear skies. It was bright with some weak sunshine, but visibility was only moderate to poor in haze. Another dry dry, with some spells of sunshine early and late afternoon with cloud encroaching again overnight. Snowberry has greened up and where present on woodland edge gives a light green hue to the understorey in any sunshine. Cattle (Welsh Blacks) are now in an adjoining field replacing overwintering sheep that lambed earlier in the year. Welsh Water have begun replacing the old water main through the village - a job scheduled to last up to 10-weeks. Pipes in Pentraeth have been replaced in recent weeks. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max C; Min 6.6C; Grass 1.5C]

This week the first results from the BBC climate change experiment, that Llansadwrn-wx took part in in 2006, were published in Nature Geoscience. The experiment ran an ensemble of simulations on 'home computers' using a complex coupled atmosphere-ocean climate model. Results from the experiment suggest 'that a global warming of 3 degrees Celsius by 2050 is as equally plausible as a rise of 1.4 degrees (relative to the 1961-1990 average). This range is derived from the range of simulations in the ensemble that accurately reproduce observed temperature changes over the last 50 years and suggest that the world is very likely to cross the '2 degrees barrier' at some point this century'..

30th: Overcast with sheets of stratocumulus clouds. It was dull all day, but kept dry. Clear skies and sunny well S and N of here, and in France. . {Durham 19.7C, Tredegar 17.0C, Resallach 1.8 mm, Leuchars 12.0h, St Athan 11.4h}[Rain trace; Max 10.6C; Min 6.9C; Grass 3.0C]
31st: Starting overcast and dull with a little rain along the North Wales coast and Llanfairfechan, here just a little drizzle to dampen concrete evaporating away before 09 GMT. Weak frontal cloud was moving southwards over N Britain; pressure was steady on 1021 mb with high 1029 mb S of Iceland declining while low 997 mb Estonia (S Baltic near Tallinn) slow-moving. A dull morning but becoming brighter by afternoon was glimpses of sunshine the sky clearing later into the evening. {Porthmadog & Helens Bay 14.3C, Ballypatrick For. 1.8 mm, Stornoway 10.4h} [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 10.6C; Min 7.1C; Grass 7.0C]

The month ended, having had 25 dry days (each <0.2 mm) and ranking 11th driest March in Llansadwrn since 1928, with 38.6 mm of rainfall (58%) & [45%] of averages. Temperatures were highest on record at this station since 1979: with the mean maximum 13.0C and mean minimum 5.9C the mean finished on 9.4C (+2.4) & [+2.5] of averages. Provisional data for Valley indicated 147.4 h of sunshine (108%) & [130%] of adjusted averages. .



Dwarf Rhododendron flowering in the garden. 1st: A sunny morning, an almost clear sky with a few small cumulus and whisps of cirrus clouds, good visibility and a little smoke haze. Pressure was steady on 1023 mb. There was no rain and as this is the 15th day without significant rain (<0.2 mm) it is an 'absolute drought'. Previous recent droughts here were between 7 - 23rd 2010 (17-days) and the 18-day spell 9th to 29th May 2004. There had been some white frost on the grass with the minimum temperature -1.6C. The afternoon was cloudier at times with cloud developing over the Snowdonia Mountains; the sky cleared again here late in the afternoon. A clear evening. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 14.5C; Min 3.2C; Grass -1.6C]
2nd: No rain overnight, so it was the 16th day of drought, but was to be the last of this spell. Overcast and dull with intermittent slight rain during the afternoon and a heavier shower just after 17 GMT ending the drought. Wild cherry was in flower. [Rain 2.7 mm; Max 10.6C; Min 6.3C; Grass 4.8C]
Fresh snow had fallen on the mountaintops. 3rd: A frontal wave developing over Scotland at midnight moved S to be N England by morning. Pressure had fallen to 1002 mb and there was light rain from 07 GMT with 2.7 mm in the raingauge at 0900 GMT. More rain during the morning, then brightening with a glimpse of sunshine by 1300 GMT, and a shower in the afternoon. Rain from 19 GMT and with a strengthening NNE'ly wind a 30 mph speed restriction was in force on the Britannia Bridge. A gust of 32 mph was recorded here at 1940 GMT. The German owned 269 ft freighter Carrier, with 8 Polish crew, went aground at the height of the storm in heavy seas after being holed in 3 places, having just loaded limestone at the Llanddulas quarry terminal, between Colwyn Bay and Abergele. Llandudno and Rhyl lifeboats were launched, and an RAF rescue helicopter called. The A55 eastbound was closed as the crew were rescued by helicopter, and fears of fuel leakage. Breaking waves hitting the lit up vessel, which was close inshore on the beach adjacent to the A55. Such was the ferocity, were seen by motorists sending water and spray over the road on to the westbound carriageway. After 6 rescues the helicopter winch broke and another helicopter from RAF Leconfield was needed to rescue the remaining crew and winchman who was left stranded onboard. This is the second vessel using the Llanddulas jetty within months to be lost transporting stone. The freighter Swanland sunk in a storm off Bardsey Island on 27th November 2011. At 2200 GMT rain had turned to sleet then some wet snow fell here before midnight. [Pptn 9.6 mm; Max 9.9C; Min 6.5C; Grass 4.2C]
4th: Sleet, snow pellets and snow continued after midnight not settling here, but at 350 ft on the mainland snow was lying in the morning. Gusts of 37 mph were recorded here at 0540 GMT and Llanfairfechan at 0600 GMT. Snow in Llanfairfechan and snow lying in Llandegai, Bethesda and Llanberis with moderate amounts on the mountains over 2500 ft. Continuous sleet at low levels and a strong to gale-force NNE'ly wind closed the Britannia Bridge to high-sided vehicles during the morning,. Blizzard conditions on the mountains. There was a wind chill factor of -5.6C, lowest of the year so far. With the storm slow to abate there were environmental concerns over 40,000 litres of fuel aboard MV Carrier, aground at Llanddulas, being pounded by large waves. The Maritime and Coastguard Agency were working to limit pollution and remove the fuel as soon as possible. It was reported that some fuel oil had leaked, but the main tanks remained intact. Early leafing and flowering horse-chestnut trees were battered leaving twigs, leaves and flowers scattered on the ground. Still windy in the afternoon, but some sunny spells with views of the snow-clad Snowdonia Mountains. Several roads, including the Horseshoe Pass in Denbighshire, the A57 Snake Pass in the Pennines, and in Yorkshire, were closed or difficult as a result of the snow. Many power lines were down and properties were without electricity in parts of North Wales including Anglesey, and NE England. The M62 was closed for several hours; lorries were stranded near Huddersfield being unable to ascend a hill. The wind started to moderate during the evening. [Pptn 0.8 mm; Max 7.0C; Min 1.2C; Grass 0.6C]
Snowdonia viewed from Llansadwrn.
Detail showing large drifted  patches of snow. MODIS TERRA image (721) on 5 April 2012 courtesy of the Rapid Response Team at NASA/GFSC. 5th: The wind moderated steadily through the night and by morning there was a light E'ly with an almost clear sky. A touch of air frost -0.1C, but on the grass it had been down to -3.4C. Stunning views of deep drifted snow on the northern slopes of the Carneddau Mountains above 250 ft. With a warm front over N Ireland and N England, and sheets of stratocumulus to the S, we were in a clear slot giving a sunny day and a clear sky into the evening before cloud encroached later. The MODIS Terra satellite image shows snow cover in North Wales and N England (bands 7-2-1 show snow as blue colour) in the clear slot between frontal systems N and S. Hundreds of starfish (below left) had been washed up along the shoreline on the beach at Llanfairfechan following the 'Carrier storm' on the 3rd. Starfish predate the mussels on the banks in the Menai Strait, but it is unusual to see so many. There were also complete razorfish, large clams and a brittle star. [Rain trace; Max 8.5C; Min 2.5C; Grass 0.2C]
6th: Overcast, the cloud thick enough to have given some spots of rain dampening the ground before 0900 GMT. Soon brighter with a glimpse of sunshine, but with a warm front stretching over Wales to the North Sea the day was mostly cloudy with rain at times in the afternoon. Spurred on by the rain a female blackbird is busy gathering material from the rockery bank and building a nest in bushes nearby. The evening remained overcast with slight rain at times as the SSW'ly wind backed NE'ly by 2300 GMT. [Rain 1.3 mm; Max 11.0C; Min -0.1C; Grass -3.4C]
Hundreds of starfish were washed up along the beach at Llanfairfechan. 7th: Overcast with fine drizzle and poor visibility. Pressure 1015 mb was rising slowly, but the morning kept dull with drizzle and slight rain at times. Brighter with brief sunny spells in the afternoon before thicker cloud bringing drizzle and slight rain returned during the evening. [Rain 0.8 mm; Max 11.0C; Min 7.3C; Grass 7.4C]
8th: An overcast, dull and sunless day. Showery in the evening. [Rain 11.5 mm; Max 11.5C; Min 8.0C; Grass 8.0C]
9th: At midnight pressure 1003 mb was falling quickly. Light to moderate rain from 01 GMT through to morning with 11.5 mm in the raingauge at 0900 GMT. Puddles were beginning to form. Pressure 993 mb was still falling quickly with low 978 mb SE Iceland. Continuous light rain, turning intermittent the sky remaining overcast into the afternoon. Pressure had been falling all day and reached its lowest 981.0 mb at 2140 GMT. A complex occlusion lay to the N and a frontal-wave low was passing over Anglesey. There were heavy showers of rain with a lot of small ice pellets here at 1950 GMT (13.8 mm/ h) and at Gorwel Heights at 2007 GMT (34.8 mm/ h). AWS rainfall totals for 00-00z were Llansadwrn 19.0 mm, Gorwel Heights 20.8 mm and Nantlle 30.2 mm. [Rain 12.9 mm; Max 8.6C; Min 6.4C; Grass 6.0C]
10th: Frequent showers overnight died out after 0210 GMT. A bright morning with a light to moderate W'ly breeze with cumulus clouds in the vicinity. Pressure 986 mb was rising with low 977 mb over the North Sea off the Tay Estuary. We were in a cool and showery flow of air, but showers kept away until late in the breezy afternoon. Some hi-tech equipment was in use today on the roadway. Welsh Water are renewing the water main through Llansadwrn past the weather station. They have had difficulty in finding the pipe installed in 1963, old maps suggested that it went through the garden. Using 'divining rods' the operative was convinced it came into the garden. I assured them it did not and a couple of holes dug proved the point. The pipe is in fact in the field opposite, on the opposite side to that shown on the map. I was assured that now found they would be using GPS to make a more accurate map (I may not be on hand to provide local knowledge in 50-years time). Temporarily we are connected to a very long blue hose that snakes up the road and on top of the stone wall edging the field. A contrast in garden weather across Britain today. In Kew Gardens it was sunny and warm with a maximum of 14.9C; here a bright and breezy 11.1C; and in Edinburgh Botanic Garden a cool 10.6C with 34.4 mm of rain. A shower of rain with a few small ice pellets fell at 2257 GMT. [Rain 0.9 mm; Max 11.1C; Min 3.8C; Grass 2.2C]
11th: Some fresh snow fell on the mountaintops and large old drift patches were evident from 1500 ft upwards. A shower of rain with squally wind at 0823 GMT. At 08 GMT the sky was clearing with 6 oktas of cumulus clouds. Showers in the vicinity with sunshine in between a rainbow seen from Four Crosses at 0938 GMT and heavy shower in Upper Bangor. More light showers through the morning, frequent sunny spells in the afternoon and dry until later. Storms in northern, central and southern England. Scattered cloud in the evening, few by midnight. Hawthorn leaves have been appearing in the hedgerows. [Rain 0.6 mm; Max 14.0C; Min 2.5C; Grass -0.4C]
12th: Shallow mist on the fields at 06 GMT soon clearing. Bright and sunny with a cool N'ly breeze and cumulus clouds in the vicinity. Pressure 1004 mb was rising with low-pressure 994 mb N Norway. Visibility was very good in the morning. Sunny spells, longer in the afternoon and kept dry all day. A pair of goldfinches were spotted on the vegetable plot. We do not see many here, but in the village many frequent garden feeders. Storms developed again in central and southern England. Best sunshine today (> 10h) was around the Irish Sea coast [Aldergrove 11.3h, Valley 10.1h], Isle of Man [11.6h] and the Western Isles of Scotland. A clear evening with a few clouds developing overnight. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 11.5C; Min 3.8C; Grass 0.0C]
13th: There was some white frost on the grassy fields at 06 GMT with the grass minimum down to -2.5C. A bright morning with 5 oktas of cumulus, altocumulus and cirrus clouds. Low 997 mb was over the Baltic while Atlantic-high 1031 mb was W of the Gibraltar Strait. Saharan dust was being drawn across the Mediterranean and northwards to the Baltic. Sunny spells in the morning, fewer by noon and turning mostly cloudy in the afternoon thick enough at times to produce slight rain. A cloudy evening. [Rain trace; Max 10.3C; Min 1.4C; Grass -2.5C]
14th: Pressure 1011 mb was rising slowly and with mostly fair-weather cumulus in the sky the morning was bright with weak sunshine at first. The jetstream was keeping well W of the UK at the moment; low 991 mb was slow moving over the Baltic and this resulted in a NE'ly airflow with showers off the southern Norwegian Sea and North sea affecting mainly the eastern coastal regions of Scotland and N England. An occluded front did make its way S reaching here by 1500 GMT producing a few light showers. [Rain 0.8 mm; Max 8.7C; Min 3.5C; Grass 0.6C]
15th: There was a trough over North Wales at midnight producing some showery precipitation over the mountains and a sprinkling of snow was seen in the morning on the Carneddau Mountains as low as 1200 ft; the large patches of old snow could clearly be seen. Pressure 1024 mb was rising slowly, but the jetstream over the Atlantic was edging closer with the Baltic low-pressure filling 1008 mb. High 1032 was over the Azores with low 978 mb S Greenland. Bright with sunny spells in the morning becoming mostly sunny in the afternoon, but cool in the N'ly breeze. With visibility improving through the afternoon there were clear views of the mountains. Mistle thrushes were fending off attacks by a crow on their nest in the wood. A nearby nest had been abandoned after an attack by crows and magpies. Mistle thrushes are formidable birds when attacked and normally can defend their nests. But a joint attack was too much for them. Towards evening the breeze moderated and with a clear sky the temperature on the grass fell away quickly as radiative cooling took effect. Some early potatoes had appeared on the vegetable plot, but they had been 'earthed up' just in case. Owls were heard at 2200 GMT. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 8.2C; Min 1.0C; Grass -1.3C]

It had been a cool first 15-days with the mean maximum 10.4C (-3.1) & [-2.5] of average and mean minimum 3.8C (-2.6) & [-1.1] of average. Rainfall was 41.9 mm [(66%)] of average, while sunshine at Valley had accrued 67 h (38%) & [42%] of the month's averages.

16th: Pressure 1025 mb was falling slowly, but it was a fine morning with some jetstream cirrus overhead and a few contrails to the south-west. A SSE'ly breeze at 09 GMT and the temperature 8.2C (dewpoint 0.7C) was highest of the past 24-hours. Soon a small cumulus cloud formed to the S and within an hour a line had formed over the Snowdonia Mountains. High 1035 mb was over the Azores and pressure was low 1010 mb over the Baltic. The one to watch was low 991 mb S of Greenland deepening to 975 mb at 18 GMT, that had an associated frontal-wave W of Ireland. Cloudier in the afternoon and moderate to heavy rain with strengthening wind from 20 to 22 GMT. At 2100 GMT pressure here 1021 mb was falling quickly and reached 1004 mb at midnight. [Rain 7.6 mm; Max 11.7C; Min 1.0C; Grass -3.1C]
Beaumaris Pier restored to it's former 1890 width.
17th: Pier restoration rearing completion at Beaumaris. A wild night, especially at Gorwel Heights in Llanfairfechan where a gust of 57 mph was recorded at 0117 GMT during force 6/7 winds off the mountains. Capel Curig reported a gust of 63 mph and Valley 54 mph during gale-force winds. Several large pots of plants were overturned here together will garden tables and chairs. A breezy morning and a clearing sky with the low 976 mb off the Western Isles of Scotland and pressure here 996 mb. A mussel dredger the Mare Gratin at work on the banks. At Beaumaris the water on the strait at high water was choppy with the flag at the Blue Peter lifeboat station flying tautly in the strong SW'ly. One of the mussel dredgers, the shallow draft Mare Gratia (43.5 m x 10 m) was at work on the banks off red buoy B10, opposite the pier. Built in 2003 by Scheepswerf Reimerswaal Hansweert, Netherlands, is operated by Deepdock to farm the mussels on the banks. Over 10,000 tonnes of mussels are harvested annually in the Menai Strait, this being over 50% of the UK's production. On land restoration of the pier continues, today I was able to walk out over the new deck restored in width to that seen in 1890 The pier in 1890. Courtesy of Gwyneddd Archives. . The restored shelter has been replaced although access was still not permitted The shelter has been replaced. . On the SW or Bangor side of the pier the new walkway to the floating pontoon, that will enable large visiting vessels to tie up at any state of the tide, has been installed, but work is still being done Beaumaris pier with new floating pontoon. . A day of sunny spells and showers, some of these wintry over the summits of the Carneddau in the afternoon. Sky partially clearing and wind moderating during the evening. [Rain mm; Max C; Min 5.3C; Grass 4.5C]
18th: Overcast and dull with recent drizzle and light rain showers. Pressure had fallen to its lowest 979 mb at 0445 GMT as the low passed nearby. Pressure was now rising 980 mb but the slow-moving low seemingly taking a fancy to hang around the UK for a while, was stationed over the Severn Estuary 975 mb at 09 GMT. There was a moderate to fresh NE'ly breeze and a lot of cluster flies were taking shelter in the Stevenson screen. These overwinter in lofts, we have them in ours, but tempted out by the recent warm spell they are now unhappy, like the observer, about the current conditions. Hi-tech installation of new water pipe near the church. Little change here during the sunless day on the NW-edge of cloud circulating within the low, slight rain at times - breezy - cool, but across the island the cloud cleared with 4.0 h of sunshine at Valley. The Western Isles were sunniest, Stornoway had 13.6h; it was very wet in the NW of England with Fylingdales having [29.8 mm]. [Rain 0.9 mm; Max 8.2C; Min 4.5C; Grass 3.5C]
19th: Signs of the sky clearing towards 09 GMT, but it was very slow. We were under an occluded front spiral over the Isle of Man and North Wales in circulation within the low 981 mb tracking N over East Anglia. Pressure here was 987.6 mb rising slowly; there was a stiff NNE'ly breeze (f3/4) making the 8.2C feel very cold with recent showers. Visibility was moderate with cloud and mist hanging low on the Snowdonia Mountains. The jetstream is keeping well S over Iberia and the Gibraltar Strait. Not as cold here as the N of Scandinavia and Lapland where minimum temperatures of -20C are not uncommon at the moment. It is still cold with some ice on the Gulf of Bothnia near Kemi. Brightening by noon, the afternoon becoming sunny with a clearing sky from the north. Progress has been made with installation of the new water supply pipe. Hi-tech today, a state of the art 'water mole' has been used to work its way along the old pipe expanding and breaking it open to insert the new pipe, now past the church and has reached a hole in the road here where the mystery of 'where is the pipe' occurred on the 10th. A clear evening lighter wind and a slight ground frost developing. [Rain 9.1 mm; Max 11.6C; Min 5.5C; Grass 4.8C]
Fresh snowfall on the mountains. 20th: Cloud encroached after midnight bringing showery rain by 0530 GMT heavy at times with small ice pellets at 0612 GMT (23 mm/h) and at Gorwel Heights at 0832 GMT (23 mm/h). It was still raining lightly under leaden skies at 09 GMT with some standing water around the station. Cluster flies in the Stevenson screen were not happy tightly gathered in the louvers. Pressure was steady on 992 mb with our resident low over NE England 989 mb; the rain had eased and the sky lightening before noon when fresh snow at 1800 ft was seen on the Carneddau Mountains. Weak sunshine in the afternoon, sky clearer with a few clouds later and in the evening. Hawthorn leaves are appearing in the hedgerows of Llansadwrn The green is in contrast to the white flowers of blackthorn that have been out for a while and whose leaves appear the flowers. [Rain 5.3 mm; Max 9.2C; Min 3.6C; Grass -0.4C]
Green hawthorn leaves appearing amongst white flowers of blackthorn. 21st: A touch of ground frost overnight and some low mists on the fields at 06 GMT before cloud encroached. At 09 GMT the cloudbase was low and ragged with visibility poor towards the mountains, but otherwise good. The cluster flies gathered in the louvers of the Stevenson screen were still. One or two slight showers of then the brighter in the afternoon, a few more showers but longer sunny spells coming along by 1530 GMT. Mostly clear at first in the evening with little or no wind the grass minimum hovering just above zero. Covered the early potatoes, now shooting out of the ridges, with fleece. [Rain 0.2 mm; Max 11.6C; Min 3.6C; Grass -0.4C]
22nd: A bright morning scattered clouds were reducing after a few spots of rain and, with a little sunshine to warm the Stevenson screen, there was some movement in the cluster flies. The low 997 mb was filling over the North Sea and pressure here 1001 mb rising slowly. Bright with some sunshine at times and feeling a bit warmer today in the light SSW'ly breeze. The temperature rose to 14.1C in the afternoon; enjoyed by bees and holly blue butterflies. The dark-blue flowering bugle Ajuga is now out on the rockery banks and looking splendid. Welsh Poppies are in bud, but the fritillaries have more or less finished and seed pods formed (very early). .Mostly cloudy evening and night. [Rain 2.1 mm; Max 14.1C; Min 4.3C; Grass 0.2C]
Garlic mustard a larval food plant of the orange tip butterfly. 23rd: Good visibility with patchy cloud hanging around and below some mountaintops with a shower trough moving eastward. Temperatures just low enough for precipitation to fall as snow on the highest mountains. There was a light covering of fresh snow on Snowdon and sprinklings on the Carneddau above 2800 ft. Some large patches of old snow remain with the lowest getting fewer in number at 2250 ft on N-facing slopes. Here, a mild night with air minimum 5.9C and on the grass 5.0C. One or two cluster flies were out of the louvers on their feet. Pressure 994 mb was falling slowly as a new low developing on a frontal-wave around 03 GMT near Lands End. With the jetstream is persistently to the S, over the Bay of Biscay, I would expect more of the same over the next few days. Bright with some weak sunshine after rain at 0730 GMT, very good visibility and a light NE'ly breeze. A band of rain over Cornwall, S Wales and Isle of Wight was moving northeast; Plymouth had (23.8 mm) of rain. Fine and dry here with some sunshine in the afternoon, sunny at Valley 8.2h with Tiree reporting the most 11.4h. There is plenty of garlic mustard in flower now (left). Stable for over 40 years, now increasing markedly in the last 3 years along roadsides  Garlic mustard increasing markedly along the hedgerows last 3 years. and into the garden. Also known as Jack-by-the-hedge it is one of the larval food plants of the orange tip butterfly that we have been seeing. A dry fine relatively warm evening, a male hedgehog was heard making lip-smacking and snorting sounds at 2100 GMT and a pair were found together on the rockery bank under a bird feeder. A male on his travels around the garden, must have come across a female looking for bits of 'cake' dropped by birds, and the inevitable occurred. They might not meet again, the male takes no part in bringing up young hedgehogs. I have also seen one at the water tray in dry weather; rare to see 2 together. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 11.1C; Min 5.9C; Grass 5.0C]
Green alkanet Pentaglottis sempivirens hedgerow. 24th: A fine and mostly sunny morning, weak sunshine at first clear spells later. At 09 GMT there were 5 oktas of cloud cover, some well developed cumulus clouds were moving quickly across on to the mountains the sky clearer to the north. Low 993 mb filling was now over Belgium, but another mass of cloud associated with developing low 993 mb was over the Atlantic to the south-west. A pleasant afternoon here with very good visibility. Also around the hedgerows where damp and shady is the brilliant blue-flowered green alkanet (right). Not as numerous as garlic mustard favouring lime-rich soils, just a few plants hereabouts. Numerous snow patches, old drifted snow and in gullies remain on the mountains with a little around the flatter summit of Carnedd Llewelyn 3485 ft and col to C. Gwellian. 3038 ft. Clear evening with not much wind. [Rain 0.6 mm; Max 11.8C; Min 4.3C; Grass 0.2C]
25th: Dry overnight, but rain began just before 08 GMT in a moderate to fresh E'ly breeze. It seemed more like the beginning of March than the end of April, but 10 minutes outside I changed my mind. January would be more like it with the temperature 5.6C and wind-chill temperature of 3.8C (had been to 3.3C). A wet unpleasant morning, wind roaring in the trees, with precipitation falling as snow for a time on the mountaintops in a strong ENE'ly wind. Low 972 mb was over the SW Approaches at 09 GMT with pressure here 984 mb falling quickly. Deepening and tracking N it was over the Bristol Channel 975 mb at 1800 GMT when pressure here had fallen to 979 mb. A wet day in Wales, 41 mm in Tredegar (21z) and in Snowdonia the AWS in the Nantlle Valley clocking up over 60 mm (00z) of rain with 19 mm in Llanfairfechan (00z). [Rain 8.2 mm; Max C; Min 4.3C; Grass -0.2C]
26th: At midnight pressure had bottomed out and was rising 980 mb with the low near Aberystwyth 979 mb. Overcast with ragged low cloud in the morning with a few spots of rain. Pressure was rising quickly on 989 mb and soon there was a patch of blue sky overhead, enough to patch a sailor's trousers but not a lot else. Remaining mostly cloudy and low on the mountains, but dry into the afternoon the temperature struggling to rise to 10.2C. There was rain from 2330 GMT. [Rain 4.7 mm; Max 10.2C; Min 5.4C; Grass 5.2C]
27th: Much of the same: recent rain with ragged stratiform cloud layers with some thinning patches. Occluded frontal systems were over the Irish Sea. Pressure was high in mid-Atlantic 1034 mb and N Italy 1023 mb with low 995 mb over the E North Sea. Visibility improving through the morning with cloud lifting. Bright at times in the afternoon snow patches (lowest c. 2350 ft NW-facing under C. Llewelyn) and light snow seen on the mountaintops especially the col between C. Llewelyn and C. Gwellian. Even cooler today the highest temperature 9.4C and 8.9C in Llanfairfechan. [Rain trace; Max 9.4C; Min 5.7C; Grass 5.4C]
28th: A grey start at 06 GMT, but with cloud decreasing a bright morning with sunny spells developing. A cool 7.7C (dewpoint 3.2C) at 09 GMT and a keen force 3/4 E'ly drying breeze. The soil surface moist at first dried considerably through the day as the temperature rose to 11.4C. The afternoon very breezy, but when the sun came out and you found a sheltered spot warm enough to admire the multi-coloured primulas. The best plants are those that seed themselves, and some magnificent colour combinations appear in the resulting crosses. More flowers have come out higher up on the wild cherry that has been slow to develop this year and not as showy as usual. A few spots of rain fell later in the afternoon and evening. Warmest in Culdrose 13.2C and Porthmadog 13.1C. Wet in SE England, Manston reported 16.4 mm (21z), that will make the grass grow, and sunniest in Kinloss 14.0h. [Rain trace; Max 11.4C; Min 5.4C; Grass 3.5C]
29th: Pressure 1013 mb was falling quickly and there were recent spots of rain. A moderate to fresh NE'ly wind with slight rain turning moderate to heavy during the afternoon with straightening wind. South Wales was badly affected with 57 trees reported down by mid-afternoon and several roads closed due to fallen trees or flooding (including the A470 Ganllwyd and A 487 at Corris. The M48 over the Severn Bridge was closed while the Britannia Bridge had a 30 mph speed limit all day. Power supplies were disrupted to over 5000 properties in the Swansea and Cardiff areas. Large amounts of rain in places Liscombe in Devon 51 mm (21z) and Tredegar S Wales 43 mm (21z). In Llanfairfechan 25.6 mm (00z) while in the Nantlle Valley 60.0 mm fell (00z). Capel Curig had 23.0 mm (09z), but here just 14.4 mm, largest of the month, and at Valley 4.2 mm. [Rain 14.4 mm; Max 9.7C; Min 4.8C; Grass 4.0C]
30th: Showers in the night (01 - 02 GMT) with a lot of fine marks on the hailometer indicative ice precipitation. Some breaks in the cloud were appearing at 09 GMT although there were a few spots of rain as well. Low 996 mb was over the Scilly Isles and pressure here was 1011 mb rising rapidly. With the cloud lifting during the morning the afternoon was fine and bright with a few sunny spells. Pleasantly warm in the light SE'ly breeze reaching 15.9C here and 16.5C at Gorwel Heights in Llanfairfechan; highest of the month, but lower than April's maxima. At the end of a mostly dry day the month's rainfall was just short of 100 mm (99.4 mm). [Rain 0.7 mm; Max 15.9C; Min 4.3C; Grass 3.8C]

A wet month the 100.1 mm,topped-up by rain just before 09 GMT on the 1 May, (159%) & [158%] of averages, most since 2005, but in some places the wettest April for over 100 years. The mean temperature 7.5C (-2.2) & [-1.4] lower than March and lowest in April since 1986 (R3 since 1979). Provisional sunshine duration at Valley was 144.6h (83%) & [92%] of averages.



1st: A dull beginning to May with low stratiform clouds looking ragged over the Snowdonia Mountains. There had been a little rain since 0700 GMT and slight rain continued at times through the morning. A cloud mass associated with deepening low 997 mb off Cape Finisterre was edging northwards and giving Cardiff 31.4 mm (21z) of rain. The afternoon was drier, but kept overcast as the cloud slowly lifted. Sunless here, but Tiree Island clear of cloud and to the N had 15.0h. Warmest was Dunstaffnage with 19.8C[Rain 0.6 mm; Max 10.3C; Min 8.8C; Grass 7.8C]
A pastoral scene in Llansadwrn on a fine frosty morning. 2nd: A clearing sky in the morning with few cirrus and small cumulus clouds. After a mild night (min 6.3C and grass 3.4C) at 09 GMT the temperature was 12.3C (dewpoint 9.3C) and sunny a bank of smoke haze (500 - 2000 ft) could be seen against the mountains. The afternoon was fine and sunny and hardly any wind by evening. Azaleas are in flower in the garden now. I am particularly fond of the pink variety (left) that I purchased from Percy Thrower at his garden centre in Shrewsbury, about 40-year ago, as a very small potted plant. Warmest today was Kinlochewe in Scotland reaching 20.1C, Stornoway was sunniest with 14.5h, and Valley 8.6h. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 13.3C; Min 6.3C; Grass 3.4C]
3rd: A bright morning with 6 oktas of altocumulus and cirrus clouds allowing some weak sunshine. Visibility was good, but hazy a combination of moderate levels of ozone and fine particles of Saharan dust. Pressure was 1015 mb with slow-moving low 997 mb off Cape Finisterre and a ridge 1018 mb over Scotland. An occluded front over S England and S Wales gave a wet day in Charsfield, Suffolk 32 mm and Cardiff 21 mm. Soil temperatures in the profile 5 to 100 cm deep were all reading 10C, or more, this morning for the first time this year. Though with increasing haze it was more or less weak sunshine all day with a cool E'ly breeze and a maximum temperature of 11.7C. Tyndrum was warmest with 20.9C. As the soil surface was dry I hoed off weed seedlings that had appeared between rows of peas, broad beans, onions and shallots. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 11.7C; Min 7.2C; Grass 6.5C]
4th: Back to a cloudy and very dull morning. A cooler night with an air temperature 4.2C and 1.5C on the grass. There was frontal cloud to the N and S of here and the afternoon did brighten up with some weak sunshine breaking through. Pressure was 1008 mb with high-pressure over Iceland 1028 mb and low 998 mb over the Baltic. It felt cold in the light to moderate NE'ly breeze the arctic airflow coming from the North Cape. Maximum temperatures here are running 4 to 5C below the average. Dry except for a few spots of rain later in the afternoon not enough to wet the ground. With broken cloud in the evening there were views of the (Perigee) Moon low in the sky and looking larger normal (14%) due to being closest to the Earth at this time. [Rain trace; Max 11.4C; Min 4.2C; Grass 1.5C]
5th: A cold night with air temperature down to 1.4C and -2.0C on the grass the 3rd lowest on record here. The long-term average of ground frosts is 0.8, there were none last year and the most were 5 days in 1996. The sky was clear at 06 GMT, but increasingly cloudy towards 09 GMT. A breezy morning the NE'ly force 3/4 and visibility was very good. It's the time of year again and the date of the annual plant sale in aid of the NSPCC so everyone was hoping for a fine day. Pressure 1014 mb had risen as a ridge of high-pressure extended across NW Britain from Icelandic-high 1030 mb. Pressure was low over the Baltic 992 mb and North Cape 997 mb resulting in the cool airflow from Arctic regions. Frontal cloud was affecting the south coast of England, there were 9 mm of rain in Shoreham (21z), and N France with a low 1004 mb over Biscay. The day was mostly fine, sunny spells were few and we did have a few spots of rain from time to time. Despite the cold breezy day the head gardener was pleased with the numbers of muffled up gardeners purchasing plants mostly perennials grown here over the year. By evening there were scattered clouds and the large Moon was visible at times. Warmest in Plymouth 12.1C, Anglesey was sunniest with 10.3 h duration recorded at Valley. [Rain trace; Max 9.0C; Min 1.4C; Grass -2.0C]
6th: The sky was clearer towards dawn and there was another slight ground frost (-0.5C). The wind turned SSW'ly between 0600 and just before 0900 GMT, but was now back to NNE'ly. Cumulus clouds were developing and there was a shower of wet 5 mm snow pellets (rain and snow pellets). This was to be the pattern for the day, showers and a few sunny spells with more snow pellets falling at 1431 GMT. With slack pressure today across Britain winds were light and variable all day. By evening showers had died out and scattered clouds were moderately high. Mean temperatures for the first 6-days are running between 4 and 5 degrees below average. The mean maxima 11.2C being (-4.3) & [-4.7] of the May averages. Warmest in Cardiff today with 13.5C, wettest in Baltasound 4.6 mm (21z) and sunniest in St Athan 7.6h. [Rain 2.7 mm; Max 11.4C; Min 2.9C; Grass -0.5C]
7th: Cloudier overnight so temperatures were a little higher with no ground frost. Cold in places with a minimum of -5.9C in Kinbrace. The wind was SE'ly force 2/3 and some lenticular altocumulus clouds were hanging in the lee of the mountains under sheets of altostratus and stratocumulus (8/8 cover). There was slight fresh snow on the tops of the Carneddau Mountains and another showery day in the offing. A frontal-wave low developed off SW Ireland and an occlude front was moving N over Wales and the Irish Sea. Brighter by 1100 GMT and a little sunshine in the afternoon in clearer weather. Warmest in Exeter 16.0C, wettest in Chivenor (21z) and sunniest in Kirkwall 10.4h. [Rain 0.6 mm; Max 13.2C; Min 4.9C; Grass 1.8C]
8th: A little broken cloud in the morning after slight showers of rain. A few sunny spells coming along in the morning and more in the afternoon. After dropping below 10C for the past 3 morning soil temperature at 5 & 10 cm were back above this morning again. After recent slight showers of rain at 09 GMT the air temperature was 10.4C (dewpoint C). Bright with a few sunny spells and a light to moderate SW'ly wind. Longer sunny spells in the afternoon the temperature creeping up to 13.5C, but in Usk 16.5C was reached and a dizzy 18.5C in St James Park, London. A quiet evening; much more birdsong heard than of late, several blackbirds and thrushes were singing around the wood and spread out along the shelter belts across the fields. A pair of gold finches were seen around the garden in the afternoon. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 13.5C; Min 6.6C; Grass 4.8C]
9th: Increasing cloudiness before 09 GMT, the sky was clearer earlier with some mostly weak sunshine. As cloud thickened there was light rain from noon, turning moderate to heavy from 1800 GMT continuing on into the night. Warm in the SE, Manston had 17.2C; sunny at Prestwick 9.3h. [Rain 24.2 mm; Max 12.3C; Min 6.6C; Grass 6.8C]
10th: It was still raining in the morning, sheets driving across the fields on the moderate SW'ly wind. A wet and miserable day with puddles formed around the garden, roadsides with pools and partial flooding of the road to Bangor between the Antelope and the new Bangor City football stadium at Nantporth. Rain most of the day with occasional strong gusts of wind, 35 mph at 1640 GMT. A wet day, 63 mm (21z) fell at Shap while in Snowdonia Capel Curig reported 56.6 mm (21z) and 62 mm in Nantlle Valley (00z). Norwich reported a maximum of 21.1C while Hawarden had 18.9C. [Rain 13.2 mm; Max 12.6C; Min 9.0C; Grass 8.9C]
A pastoral scene in Llansadwrn on a fine frosty morning. 11th: Mostly cloudy, but not raining. A few breaks appeared in the cloud just before 09 GMT, but stalled and the hope for sunny day did not develop. Visibility was very good and clear under the cloud sheet. Many of the snow patches had disappeared after the rain, but there were several left on cliffs and gullies under Carnedd Llewelyn and a solitary small patch hanging on at 2450 ft under the Black Ladders. A few spots of rain during the afternoon, but not heavy enough to curtail work in the garden. . [Rain trace; Max 12.2C; Min 6.1C; Grass 5.1C]
12th: The sky was clear at dawn and there was another ground frost (-1.0C) the 3rd this month. Cumulus clouds developed before 09 GMT (4 oktas) and visibility was still very good. Sunny spells in the morning the sky slowly clearing through the afternoon with the screen temperature rising to 15.1C. Valley reported 13.9 h of sunshine topped by Camborne with 14.6h. A clear evening with light SW'ly breeze. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 15.1 C; Min 3.0C; Grass -1.0C]
13th: A bright and breezy morning the SW'ly force 3/4 strengthening before 09 GMT and kept breezy into the afternoon. Sunny at first then when cloudier around noon sunny spells and weak sunshine. Later the sky began clearing and there was sunshine from late afternoon into the evening. There were strong winds during the day in N Scotland and out over the N North Sea and an occluded front associated with low 984 mb SE Iceland over the NW tracked SE arriving here during the evening with rain from 1900 GMT. Wet in Kinlochewe where 97 mm fell in 24-h to 21 GMT. [Rain 7.1 mm; Max 12.8C; Min 5.8C; Grass 3.0C]
Restoration of Beaumaris Pier nears completion with installation of the floating quay. 14th: Rain easing by 01 GMT with 7.1 mm collected at 09 GMT. The sky was clearing , but visibility was moderate with low cloud on the mountains, The morning brightened with sunny spells developing into the afternoon. Frontal cloud moving SE during the night was over the Bristol Channel and eastward to E Anglia. Low 975 mb was over the Norwegian Sea N of Scotland while pressure was high 1032 mb over the Atlantic to the SW; strong winds were persisting over the N North Sea. During the evening a showery trough moved across the the Isle of Man, Irish Sea and Wales bringing a shower of rain and ice pellets at 2230 GMT. High temperatures in Spain (38.3C) and the Canary Islands (34.5C) where 2 British holidaymakers died thought to be heat related. [Rain 0.5 mm; Max 13.7C; Min 6.0C; Grass 4.0C]
Looking out across the floating pier in Beaumaris at the Menai Strait and Snowdonia. 15th: Early slight showers of rain and ice precipitation continued into the morning. At 09 GMT the temperature was 8.5C (dewpoint 5.4C) and there were further showers in sight across the mountains where a sprinkling of snow was seen on the summits. A heavy shower of rain and ice or snow pellets at 1214 GMT (23 mm/h) and further snowfall on the mountains as low as 2250 ft. Later with scattered clouds there were 1 or 2 bright spells. A cool day or May with a maximum of 10.5C. In Beaumaris the restoration of the pier was nearing completion with the installation of the new floating quay. The quay will adjust to the large tidal range experienced in the Menai Strait allowing boats access at any state of the tide. [Rain 3.1 mm; Max 10.5C; Min 4.5C; Grass 2.5C]

The first 15-d have been much cooler than usual with the mean temperature 8.9C (-2.9) & [-2.8] of averages. In particular, the mean maximum 12.2C (-3.2) & [-3.7] well below both decadal and 30-y averages for May. Wetter too, with rainfall of 52.0 mm reached (71%) % [84%] of averages. There have been 3 ground frosts.

Rhododendron garden at the weather station. 16th: A fine and sunny morning, after a clear dawn, with very good visibility and sight of broken snow patches on Snowdon and a sprinkling on the Carneddau with a solitary snow patch surviving at 2750 ft on N-facing cliffs of C. Llewelyn Cloud was increasing towards 09 GMT, but it was pleasant when the sun came out. The maximum today was 13.5C; the warmest place was in Usk with 15.0C and St Athan was sunniest 14.2h. The sky was clearer again late afternoon and evening before cloud encroached. [Rain 1.2 mm; Max 13.5C; Min 2.6C; Grass 0.3C]
17th: Pressure 1018 mb was falling slowly with low 1004 mb Bay of Biscay and high 1027 mb over Belgium with a ridge towards Britain. The sky was overcast with an occluded front over Wales and Ireland. Brightening during the morning with some weak sunshine, a glimpse of sunshine around 1425 GMT then with the cloud thickening again drizzle and slight rain before the end of the afternoon and continuing into the evening. A wet day on Skye 19.8 mm (21z). [Rain 0.3 mm; Max 11.8C; Min 5.5C; Grass 2.5C]
18th: A dull morning with sky overcast and continuous spots of rain and moderate visibility. An ENE'ly breeze strengthened during the morning. There were heavy showers of rain moving along the mainland coastal strip near Penmaenmawr around noon and light rain from 2100 GMT heaviest between 2200 and 2300 GMT. [Rain 4.6 mm; Max 11.4C; Min 7.6C; Grass 6.4C]
19th: Intermittent light rain after midnight with a dull and damp morning. The afternoon was brighter with a little sunshine later. Tiree had 15.8h of sunshine and Valley 2.0h. Charlwood had a maximum temperature of 19.0C. [Rain 0.3 mm; Max 12.1C; Min 7.1C; Grass 6.3C]
20th: A few clouds from 02 GMT and a fine bright morning. At 09 GMT the temperature was 11.8C (dewpoint 8.7C) and although cloudier around noon the afternoon was sunnier with a maximum temperature of 15.1C. Haze, aerosols and Saharan dust, was moderate through the day with poor visibility. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 15.1C; Min 6.1C; Grass 4.9C]
21st: The sky was clear at dawn and there had been a moderate to heavy dewfall, but some cumulus clouds were forming to the S at 09 GMT soon dispersing again. A sunny day with a light NE'ly breeze and a maximum temperature of 15.3C. The Isle of Skye had 20.6C and Aberporth reported 14.4h of sunshine beaten by Lerwick with 15.9h. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 15.3C; Min 6.7C; Grass 4.0C]
Welsh poppies in flower on a rockery bank. 22nd: Another mostly clear night, but milder with a minimum air temperature of 7.1C and 3.9C on the grass. Another sunny day, a few patches of cirrus at times, and feeling warmer with the temperature rising to 20.1C in Stevenson screen during the afternoon. The temperature reached 24.8C in Usk and 26.7C in the Solent.. Valley had 14.2h of sunshine with Lerwick again highest with 14.5h. [Rain trace; Max 20.1C; Min 7.1C; Grass 3.9C]
MODIS AQUA image (true-color) on 23 May  2012 courtesy of the Rapid Response Team at NASA/GFSC. 23rd: Cloud and fog moved in from the Irish Sea overnight; visibility was 100 m at 06 GMT. Fog began to lift before 09 GMT when moderate fog 500 m. There was slight fine drizzle before thinning out and turning brighter during the morning. Stratiform cloud and fog was affected western Britain, including Anglesey, and some east coastal areas including Kent through the day. The Isle of Man was in the clear. Temperature at 09 GMT 12.8C (dewpoint 12.4C) did rise to 16.2C during the afternoon despite the cloudiness. Sunless until the evening when cloud and mist retreated back to the coastal. Most of the UK was in sunshine and at Altnaharra the temperature rose to 27.3C while 25.5C was recorded in S Wales at Llysdinam. [Rain 0.0 mm; Max 16.2C; Min 10.3C; Grass 8.1C]
24th: Misty at first, but soon clearing to sunshine before 09 GMT. A light NE'ly breeze pushing cloud and fog back to the Irish Sea. The temperature was 15.6C and visibility moderate to good. [Rain mm; Max C; Min 8.6C; Grass 6.6C]


¤ 5c

Diary last month. Met Office forecast for the Snowdonia National Park



Select individual graphic below for 2011, or see most on a page Weather graphics 2011..

Hover your cursor over the icon for details

Graph of daily mean temperature. Graph of daily maximum and minimum temperatures. Graph of soil temperature at 30 cm depth. Graph of daily rainfall. Histogram of monthly rainfall compared with the long-term average. Histogram of accumulated monthly rainfall with comparisons. Graph showing net yield of a mown grass ecosystem at the weather station. Red graph is total yield; Green graph is rate of growth: © 2011 D.Perkins. Comparison of annual grass production since 2004: © 2011 D.Perkins. Histogram of potential evapotranspiration and water balance. Soil moisture percentage (% dry mass).


Some annual stats for 2011, or look at the annual report Monthly summary and stats for 2011.

. Graph of annual mean temperature and anomalies 1979-2011. No. days in the year exceeding 20C & 25C at Llansadwrn 1979-2011. Annual rainfall anomaly at Llansadwrn 1929-2011. Annual Anglesey sunshine duration anomaly 1930-2011.




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Latest weather. Latest AWS observations
Diary since January 2011. Diary 2011 to last month
Snowdonia Snowline. Snowdonia snowline for 2011/2012, usually updated twice weekly in season
Latest observations. Daily Observations, usually updated bi-monthly
Monthly summary and stats for 2011.Monthly summary and further analysis of the observations in 2011
Weather graphics. Temperature graphs, daily and monthly rainfall histograms, accumulated rainfall total and more, all on a page for 2011
Latest weather page. The observer's choice of forecasts, satellite imagery, severe weather, natural hazards and more
Weather station location map.Location map and satellite image (use mouse, left click and hold to drag the image)

Large [260 KB] NOAA 12 visible image at 1623 GMT on 8 April 2002 showing a cloud-free British Isles. Courtesy of Michael Wienzek ( A rare cloud-free image of the British Isles captured by the NOAA 12 satellite at 1623 GMT on 8 April 2002.

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