Long Range Weather Forecast For Ireland (29 January 2021)

TRENDS for the week of 29 Jan to 4 Feb 2021

-- Temperatures will be near normal values in the south but could fall to 1 or 2 below normal in the north.
-- Rainfall or liquid equivalent of wintry precip will total near normal amounts.
-- Sunshine will amount to 50-75 per cent of normal.


TONIGHT rain will move in from the west and could be heavy at times in the south, temperatures steady 5-7 C with fog developing and 10-20 mm rainfalls expected there. Later in the night some mixed wintry falls may begin especially on higher terrain in central counties. It should remain largely dry further north, lows near 2 C there.

SATURDAY the rain will continue for a time in the south before pulling away towards France, and any mixed or sleet/snow falls in central counties will also end, leaving small accumulations on some hills. Rather cold with winds east to northeast 40-60 km/hr, highs 5 to 7 C.

SUNDAY more weak disturbances will move along a frontal boundary set up through south-central counties, and this could lead to snow in some central and eastern counties, as well as into the north at times, at the moment it looks like 2-5 cm accumulations are possible, will be checking this against updated guidance. Rain will continue in the south especially in west Munster, where highs could stay above 5 C, otherwise temperatures may slump down into the cold 1-4 C range.

MONDAY looks somewhat milder again as another low pushes in but brings along somewhat milder air, at least temporarily; this milder sector will contain rain and fog and will push temperatures back to around 7 or 8 C for a while at least, but once again cold air will be lurking and mixing back south late in the day or overnight into Tuesday morning when rain could turn to sleet or snow.

The outlook for the rest of next week is generally a slow downward trend in temperatures with a very cold interval signalled by much of the guidance towards the weekend of 6-7 Feb and into the following few days. There are hints of a strong northeast flow developing with this and bitter cold, broadly similar to what happened at the end of Feb 2018, but it's too early to place very definite forecasts on that possibility yet, let's just say for now that a significant cold spell with snowfalls could be experienced at least in Leinster and east Ulster by that time frame. Chances are probably not that much greater than 50-50 at this point so it's more of a watch than an alert. 

 -- Peter O'Donnell is Irish Weather Online's Senor Forecaster.