Two Polar Lows To Slam Iceland Bringing Cool Shots Into UK Next 7 Days, Potential Mid-Sept Cold Spell?

Written by on August 28, 2013 in Rest of Europe, United Kingdom & Ireland with 0 Comments

Not one but two lows of polar origin (formation between Greenland and Canada) will slam Iceland, likely presenting winter extremely early. Just last year on Sept 15th, a rare, even unprecedented snowstorm struck northern parts of the Nordic Isle, killing many sheep and cutting off my northern residents and visitors. Less than a year on and two weeks earlier than that ‘rare’ event and Iceland faces yet another snowstorm/blizzard scenario, extremely early in the season.

While the first low deepens to 975mb Saturday bringing bitter cold, gales and heavy snow, particularly to higher ground, another system forming in the same region to the north of Hudson Bay appears to take a near identical track bringing another blast of early winter to the Island early next week.

Temperatures this morning dipped as low as -34C at Summit Camp in the dead centre of Greenland. This low will tap this cold.

Below is the ECMWF 500mb chart & 850mb temps and this clearly shows the two systems.

48 hrs… Note the deeper blues over much of Greenland and the low exiting the SE coast.


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By 72 hrs the low has deepened into the 970s in millibars and is slamming Iceland but notice the other low forming near to Baffin Island. That system will also cross southern Greenland, ingesting bitterly cold air too before striking Iceland.


As for the UK, the chill will be felt with NW winds, rain and much cooler temperatures Sunday as Icelandic low No 1 heads for Norway bringing cold, wet and windy weather to Scandinavia down into Denmark and the Low Countries during Sunday and Monday.


By early next week, system one is off the map, the UK trough gets replaced by a ridge with warmth lifting back north but the second Icelandic low is now hitting with more wind, rain, cold and snow. According to the ECMWF, at 168hrs system two pulls east of Iceland but the model suggests a deeper trough with lower heights dropping down over the UK. This could hint at an early rural frost with the cold air in place overhead.

Check out the trough and cold pool at 240 hrs centred directly over the UK. This has a real negative NAO look.


So, two wintry hits on Iceland and two troughs drop over the UK, the second being stronger and more dominant than the first. What interesting tonight is the fact that both ECMWF, GFS and CFSv2 have an increasingly negative NAO look in the 10-15 day period and particularly the CFSv2, it has is showing blocking over the far north in the 3-4 week period. Check this out.

Week 1-2


Week 3-4


Could this be the early hint of a mid-Sept cold shot with widespread rural frost, unseasonably cool days? This will be interesting to keep an eye on. Makes sense but even if this does come. I recon it’s an up and down next 60 day period within the NAO/AO up and down. It’s not till later into October, November and December where the feedback of more extensive arctic sea ice, warm waters really kick in.

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