News and information

Easter 2018

Weather prospects


28/03/2018

Easter on April Fool's day

Easter Sunday falls on April 1st this year. Despite a relatively mild meteorological winter March has already brought two spells of unusually cold weather. At this time of year the sun is rapidly strengthening but wintry conditions remain possible, a good example is the famous cold spell in late April 1981.

Easter scene

Easter eggs amsterdam" by Rotemdan - Own work. Licensed under Attribution via Wikimedia Commons

Easter weather outlook

Data from the medium range computer models is favouring an unsettled and colder than average Easter period. There is uncertainty about the details but the possibility of snow isn't discounted, especially in the north. 

The GEFS6z postage stamp plot below shows forecast maximum temperatures for Easter Sunday. GEFS is an ensemble computer model which helps identify the likelihood of different weather outcomes.

The key thing to note is that most of the stamps show below average temperatures. That indicates a high likelihood of a cold Easter period.

GEFS6z

GEFS 6z ensemble maximum temperature plots for Easter Sunday

The chart below is also from today's GEFS 6z model and shows forecast snowfall for Easter Sunday.

1) Most of the stamps show a snow risk in the north.

2) A small number of the stamps show a snow risk in the south.

GEFS6z Easter Sunday snowforecast

GEFS 6z ensemble snow forecast plots for Easter Sunday

Summary

A chilly and unsettled Easter period is expected. The day to day details are uncertain but all areas have showers or longer outbreaks of rain at times. The risk of snow is quite high in the north but low in the south. On Easter Monday wet weather could spread northeastwards bringing a risk of more prolonged spells of sleet and snow to central and northern areas. In the south milder and showery conditions may return.

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