New record wind gust

Another deep low pressure system brought us high winds last night, with a gust at 0442 setting a new record for this year of 38kts – just beating the 37.4kts recorded on 28 October. At the time of writing (0920) the low is moving away across Scotland, pressure is starting to rise and the wind is moderating, and we should be having a more peaceful day today.

Watercourses are still full and the ground is staurated, but fortunately this low brought relatively modest amounts of rain: a total of 4.6mm fell yesterday evening and this morning, compared with over 20mm on the 23rd.

Wettest day of the year – so far

Yesterday’s lively weather produced 20.4mm of rain from midnight to midnight, which makes it the wettest day so far in 2013. We don’t have to go back far to find a higher total, though: 22 December 2012 was wetter with 22.2mm, so yesterday’s total was the highest for a year and a day.

It was certainly windy, but the maximum gust of 34.8kts at 1140 is no record-breaker. We recorded 37.4kts in the mini-storm of 28th October, and we have topped 40kts in most years since 2007. The wind was prolonged, though, because it was the product of more than one low-pressure system – the Atlantic chart was complex with several low pressure systems merging as the day wore on, each contributing more bands of rain. The heaviest rainfall came at 1435, when 3mm of rain fell in less than five minutes.

December’s rainfall total so far is 78.8mm which means we are already above the December average, and the procession of deep Atlantic lows shows no signs of abating: we may not have seen the last of the wind and rain. Whether we reach last year’s December total of 109.6mm remains to be seen, but the ground is now saturated and further heavy rainfall will have nowhere to go.

It looks as if there will be some respite for the next couple of days, though, so I’ll take this opportunity to wish everyone a merry but peaceful Christmas.

A warm December night

Last night (1800-0600 on 15th/16th December) saw an average temperature of 13.3C, a night-time figure more typical of the summer months than mid-December. It isn’t quite a new December record for this station because we saw 13.4C one night in December 2007, but the last five days have been unusually mild thanks to a warm and rather blustery southerly airstream – a marked contrast to the calm conditions earlier in the month when high pressure was in charge.

The average temperature so far in December is 7.5C which is well above average, but there is plenty of time yet for that to change. With wet and windy weather forecast for the coming few days, though, there is no indication of cold weather between now and Christmas, so the above-normal average could stay with us.

Rainfall so far this month is 23.8mm, well within the normal range.



November 2013 summary

November got off to a blustery and rather wet start, a continuation of the Atlantic-dominated weather that we saw in October. A couple of notable features were a very local thunderstorm just after 2200 of 2 November, which brought us 2mm of rain and a temperature drop of 4.5C in nine minutes: and the following day, 3 November, which produced 18.8mm of rain – the highest daily total of the year so far.

The second week of November saw the emergence of high pressure to the west of the UK, which protected us from the worst of the Atlantic weather systems: but it also drew cold air down from the north with night-time temperatures only just above freezing. The high pressure retreated around the 17th allowing Atlantic lows to bring more wind and rain, but by 20th November high pressure was in charge once again and this time it stayed with us for the rest of the month. No rain fell for the last nine days of November, but the first of several air frosts was recorded overnight on the 19th/20th.

The average temperature for November was 7.6C, close to normal for the time of year, and total rainfall was 86.8mm – again, well within the normal range. The spells of high pressure made for a quiet month after a blustery start. Although there were some clear skies there was also a good deal of high-pressure gloom, where cloud becomes trapped beneath a high pressure system and there isn’t enough energy in the sunshine to disperse it.

The average temperature for Autumn 2013 was 11.8C, yet another boringly normal figure, but thanks to the soggy October the total Autumn rainfall was 286.6mm which is rather wet – but not as wet as Autumn 2012 with 325.8mm.