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Ireland for rest of 2016

FRIDAY APRIL 01, 2016

That the 2015/16 winter would be mild for Ireland, with, despite occasional wintry spells,  no long severe cold spells, was foretold in our almanacs of both 2015 and 2016. Some are wondering why winter was so wet. Mild winters will always be wet. Consider the opposite - colder air creates higher pressure systems because colder air is heavier.  High pressure systems bring dry weather.  Warmer winter air feeds clouds, which must fall as rain.

Readers can calculate for themselves which will be warmer Ireland summers.  The sun supplies the heat, which varies over a cycle of roughly 11-12 and 22-23 years.  To work out warmer summers, let us remember the warm summer of 1995. Adding 11-12 gives us the pleasant summer of 2006, and adding 23 gives us that the next decent summer with long dry periods will be 2018. So until then, that is, 2016 and 2017, we can anticipate typically mild summers with occasional dry spells, but nothing spectacular.

So don't get your hopes too high - summer will be cool and unsettled overall, earlier than expected with some good dry intervals but no prolonged heat waves. The highest temperature may be about 24C towards the end of May (28-29), then again sometime in the third week of August.  In terms of wind we can expect a calm spring and summer, then a breezy autumn.

Overall, spring brings average rain and temperatures, (except warmer overall in Connaught) and less sunshine than average. Summer brings average rain,  average temperatures (but cooler overall in Ulster and Leinster) and below average sunshine.

Looking ahead by months, MAY brings some dryness in the second week, then a wet spell which dries up after the 22nd, then remaining clear until 3 June. That is nearly 2 weeks of settled conditions which will be the best hope for summer, with the last week in May set to deliver the sunniest spell for the year.

JUNE starts dry but turns unsettled for the rest of the month, with chances of rain within any three days.  It is wetter and cloudier than average, with temperatures around normal.  Although sunshine  returns 21-25 June,  dry spells are likely to be short lived.  For some in the Midlands there may be flooding risks in the fourth week.

JULY  is dry for about 8 days for some of the second and third weeks (9th-17th), but mainly is a dull month with occasional passing showers,  likely to be heavier in the last few days.

AUGUST is not too wet, with average rainfall, dull skies, and fairly normal temperatures.  It is wetter around the 12th and 26th, and may be surprisingly warm around the 18th.

Although it brightens up in the middle and the last few days of August, no useful dry intervals are expected until  5-8 September and then 28 September - 3 October. The end of October through the first week of November brings some heavy rain falls, but overall autumn will be warmer and sunnier than the norm. For some, first frosts will appear in the last weeks of both October and November.

 

For more information, and how to order the Weather Almanac for Ireland for 2016, visit www.predictweather.com


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