Some snow fell on the highest parts of our region yesterday as snow showers peppered the Northern half of the country from the unstable Arctic flow. Dipton, nr Consett saw about 3” of snow. Dipton is about 800ft above sea level. Here’s a couple of photos from GeordieKev, posted to NetWeather Forums. The Consett area is one of the snowiest urban communities in Britain, according to Professor Gordon Manley. My own site in Gilesgate got nothing more than sleety rain.
An Easterly outbreak, dubbed “The Beast from The East” by the media, dumped a substantial amount of snow on us at the end of February and early March 2018. When such a weather synoptic occurs, we tend to get plastered in snow here on the North East Coast. Temperatures hover around zero and potent snow showers are readily blown inland, reaching Durham without too much trouble.
Here’s a view across The River Wear from the path just as we emerged from Pelaw Wood. Snow was 8-12” deep in most places, squeaking under our boots as we walked down the track to the river from Silverlink Bridge.
The cold front eventually arrived, revealing the true power of the Arctic airstream we’d been promised. The temperature fell from +1.5 degC at noon to -2.0 degC at 1pm, with a ferocious blizzard of fine powder snow. This is probably the most impressive cold front passage since the mid 80’s, with additions to the lying snow of last night.
I was at work in Aycliffe at the time and we all got stuck in the Canteen. Not a bad thing, but it was quite unbelievable in ferocity and the drop in temp was something i’ve not experienced for a long time, certainly not in this country. It was undoubtedly a squall feature, as it could be seen approaching like a duststorm. It didn’t seem to lose any of it’s intensity either as it swept southward across the country.
The snow has been blowing around this afternoon in the strong NW wind leading to poor road conditions later.
Comments from another local weather station observer
“Yes, incredible conditions as a gust of wind instantaneously blew in a blizzard.
The temperature at 11.57am was 2.3c, and at 12.15 pm was -2.0c, a drop of 4.3c in 18 minutes in Newton Aycliffe.
I’ve seen many occasions with worse snow, as in depth and length of showers, but I have never seen a short blizzard as intense as that one. A truly remarkable sight.”