Greenland Hits -40C While Remnants Of Humberto Could Bring Summer Briefly Back To UK

Written by on September 16, 2013 in Rest of Europe, United Kingdom & Ireland with 0 Comments

A deep area of low pressure spinning over the northeast Atlantic has brought the 2nd spell of snow to parts of Iceland and 100 mph wind gusts over the tops of the Scottish Highlands. In the wake of the deepening low, skies cleared, winds fell light and bitter cold settled over Greenland with a rapid rise in surface pressure. These conditions, all thanks to the exiting low to the south, allowed the temperature to plummet to -40C over the Greenland interior last night, the lowest value so far this autumn.

The low has been a dominant player across the North Atlantic and western Europe over the past 36 hours and will continue to dominate through much of this week. Despite the pressure rising and the system in a weakening state tonight and tomorrow as the circulation drops into the North Sea, winds will continue to blow out of the northwest, keeping things cold and showery over the UK.

Here’s the latest met office analysis chart as of 0000 this morning.


Check out this stunning webcam shot from this afternoon at Summit Camp, Greenland with clear blues skies and fairly light winds. The temperature remains at a bone chilling -27C or -17F as of 3.36pm.


The below graph shows the temperatures at the research station over the last 7 days and you can clearly see that last night’s -40C is the coldest by far. It may go lower tonight.


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The rest of this week looks rather unsettled across the UK but towards the weekend, I alluded to the possibility of another storm arriving with an injection of tropical energy.

Interesting the models have turned around somewhat on their original idea. Yes the remnants of Humberto, which by the way weakening to a depression and is now back top storm status, does still look to lift north, but a lot of the bundling of energy from a deepening N Atlantic low appears to hold back west of the UK.

Here’s the latest forecast track for Humberto.


You can clearly see it lifting north but what’s interesting is that the dominant system which holds further back and to the south of Greenland, still gets that tropical injection but rather than deepening the low that’s already formed and taking it east towards Iceland or the UK, it ultimately pumps a ridge which brings a last taste of summer to Ireland and the UK late this weekend into early and mid next week.

That would be despite a downward trend in the NAO/AO. In saying that I don’t see much of a negative signal until the later stages of the month and more so into October.

Check out the latest ECMWF 500mb/850 temps from Saturday through next Thursday.

I am curious to see whether the model holds to this more late summer setup compared to a stormier one, given the downward trend in the NAO.

If this pans out, well you would expect mid-20s to return to southern parts of the UK, low 20s in the North. Conditions would also settle down over southern Scandinavia, Denmark and especially into the Low Countries though it just depends on where the boundary sets up.

Sat 21


Sun 22


Tue 24


Thu 26

As for the longer term and as stated above, the NAO/AO continues to trend down with no reluctance in the GFS ensembles in sending both oscillations into the tank by months end.

Any warming coming up will likely be short lived and most likely should be enjoyed as I believe a spell of cold looms. The first 10 days of October could open downright cold with early snow in some mountain chains.

Here’s the latest GFS NAO/AO ensembles.



The latest CFS continues to see above normal temps over the arctic and below normal over the UK, consistent with blocking. I remain still believe we get a flip in November with a reload of cold over the arctic before stronger blocking sets in mid December onwards.


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