CairnGorm Webcams & AWS

Unfortunately there is a data link issue with the Winterhighland SSC Hut webcams and both the Sheiling and SSC Hut weather stations. The GPRS router dropped out after earlier connection issues that are likely to have been down to the sheer level of usage of the mobile network in the area today.

This has happened before during very busy periods in Aviemore and on the mountain, there is only a finite amount of capacity on the Meall a’ Bhuachaille mast and voice calls and sms services take priority over data if the need arises. The system auto reboots overnight and will hopefully come back up on it’s own, should the problem persist a site visit will be undertaken on Saturday (oh the pain I hear you say) to attempt a manual restart of the camera system.

Happy Thermal Mid-Winter

Did you forget Valentines Day? Never mind, I forgot to post this on the day in question as well….

The 14th of February also marks the point of Thermal Mid Winter for Northern Scotland, the point when the rolling 30year average temperature at the 850mb height reaches it’s lowest level. Sea temperatures around Scotland are usually also lower than early in the winter, so cold air gets less modification as it passes over the sea towards us.  However this can mean less convective snow showers bubbling up over the sea as it requires colder air aloft to generate the same temperature gradient as earlier in the winter, this is part of why we’re getting bluebird days and not the repeated dumpage of late December from the current weather pattern.

As we move through the last couple of weeks of the official UK meteorological winter (in reality the astronomical definition of 21st Dec to 21st March is perhaps more useful for Highland Scotland) we start to move into a period where the Atlantic is traditionally quieter – the chances of big Atlantic storms starts to diminish. Hopefully the Atlantic hasn’t been saving itself up all winter so far!

As the days lengthen so the potential for convective showers start to increase, remember the April (Snow) Showers of 2008.  Dare we even hope for a 2001 or 2008 like spring after the season so far?

Coldest Winter?

Wednesday 3rd February will mark another significant milestone in winter 2009/10, seven weeks of consecutive snow lie at even relatively low altitudes in places such as Aviemore. Indeed even here in Central Inverness, you need to go back the same 7 weeks to find a time when the immediate surrounds has been completely snow free and there is a light dusting of fresh this evening as well.

At least some patches of snow on the ground for 7 weeks at ~10m above sea level in Inverness… 7 days of snow lie is quite rare consecutively for low levels!

It’s now officially the coldest December and January period for Scotland as a whole since Scotland wide records begun in 1914. What about the Coldest Winter? Well we’re still a good bit short of the coldest recorded 2 month period and February would need to make the festive period look quite benign to get close the coldest winter record.

However, could this be the fabled Hale Winter everyone was talking about 2 or 3 years ago?

Fresh Snow in Aviemore.

Fresh Snow in Aviemore.