Europe Outlook: Upper Pattern Discussion

Written by on March 30, 2014 in Rest of Europe, United Kingdom & Ireland with 0 Comments

We have a fairly tricky forecast this upcoming week in terms of pinning down the details in terms of sun, cloud and rain. The strongest positive this week will be focused over Iceland and that ridge runs SSE to Italy and the central Med. Cold, even arctic air will push south on the eastern side of the ridge while the main focus of disturbed weather will be out over the Atlantic. Ireland and the western fringes of the UK sit beneath the boundary between low pressure to the west and high pressure to the see.


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Fronts separating the air masses will pivot back and forth with upper disturbances running along. This means spells of wind and rain mainly for Ireland and the W UK but at times, pulses of rain will manage to spread more widely over the UK. Eastern and Southeastern parts of the UK will see good spells of mild to warm sunshine, far less rainfall.

Get over to the Low Countries and into Germany and it’s all about a capped, cloud free sky where the ridge core is positioned, supporting warmer than normal temperatures. As for Spain and Portugal. All the backed up lows spinning over the open Atlantic will dive into Iberia bringing wind, rain and below normal temperatures. Finally, Scandinavia turns increasingly colder through the upcoming 7 day period as the trough deepens and arctic air plunges south. More -20C nights are likely over Sweden, Finland and Russia.

Both ECMWF and GFS show a big height field flip during week 2.

Here’s the 500mb 7-mean height anomalies off the ECMWF (EPS) Control.

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Note the reversal in the 7-14 day with below normal heights up over Iceland and the strongest heights over the South of the UK into France.

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

8-15 day

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

GFS 500mb mean height anomalies is not dissimilar to the EPS Control in the front running 7 days. Ridging runs from the core up over Iceland down through the North Sea to Italy. Low heights and cold dominate from Scandinavia to the Black Sea while low pressure focused from the Atlantic into Iberia.

Ireland into the western fringes of the UK will be for the most part, disappointing as you stay on the wrong side of the boundary, whereas the eastern UK should stay mainly dry, bright and particularly in the Southeast, warm!

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Just like the ECMWF Control, we see the abrupt shift in the north-south height field week 2 with negative replacing positive over Iceland. This flip should favour areas that will be disappointing this week with better, warmer weather. Areas such as Ireland down through parts of France and especially Iberia where the focus of rainfall will be this week.


Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

The 9-16 day shows the focus of high pressure over the Western Med and that ridge pokes up into the UK. That means it should remain on the drier side of normal.

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Overall, the pattern looks to stay fairly dry and even benign through the first half of April. This seemingly uninteresting pattern should hopefully continue the slow drying process which will be crucial if we’re hoping for some decent warmth and sunshine this summer.

What’s interesting is the CFSv2 shows some fairly significant blocking in the arctic down over Greenland during the second half of April following a spell of ridging over W Europe indicative of a positive NAO. This suggests dry but also colder between April 15-30th following a spell of warm and dry in the first 15 days. Something worth keeping a close eye on.

Week 1-2


Week 3-4


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