Standard Winter Fare Or Something More Severe Next Week?

Our position since yesterday regarding the much talked about potential for severe cold and snow in Ireland this weekend and during next week remains unchanged. All evidence points to a less cold and wintry outlook for next week than has been portrayed elsewhere.

There is more of a correlation between the main computer weather forecasting models today than there has been in recent days. The American GFS model has consistently been indicating a swift return to milder and more unsettled weather from the Atlantic early next week, while the European-based ECMWF has been stubborn in relation to its much colder and snowy outlook.  However, the ECMWF has downgraded the snow potential it has been showing for Sunday through much of next week. Met Eireann, which like other European meteorological agencies bases much of its forecasting output on the ECMWF, has reflected these changes by altering its severe cold and snowy forecast to a much less severe forecast.

The Meteo Times estimates that for most of next week, the chances of modified cold with mixed precipitation remain at about 50%, deep cold and snow are about 30%, and milder intervals about 20%. The favoured outcome, for next week, as indicated above, would leave us in a cool zonal setup with rain and some mixed wintry precipitation (snow confined to hills and mountains) as opposed to a much colder east-northeast setup bringing an increased risk of snowfall and subzero temperatures. The northeast and east of Ireland along with much of Britain are likely to hold on to colder weather into the early days of next week but even here snowfall is at this stage likely to be confined to northern England and Scotland.
The GFS presents a rather familiar outlook for next Wednesday i.e. blustery southwesterly feeding in showers or longer spells of rain. Image
The models may very well flip again due to changes going on in the upper atmosphere. In fact, subtle changes in all model output are likely from run to run. That said, the past 24 hours has seen a wider shift in what is being forecast by the main computer models next week. This shift favours a modified cold with mixed precipitation, better known as “standard Irish winter fare”.

Between now and next Monday there will be some harsh overnight frosts that may linger during the daytime as well as some marginal situations whereby snow may fall in parts, particularly on high ground and in the east and north. For more on this and for particular details relating to Britain see our daily long range forecast.  For further updates join us on Twitter and Facebook.
- Mark Dunphy, TMT