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Lake District

Weather hazards over 300m on Sat 25 Mar 2017

High risk

No high risks
none

Medium risk

Strong sunlight
Strong sunlight expected during the middle of the day

Low risk

No low risks
none

No risk

Blizzards
none
Heavy snow
none
Storm force winds
none
Gales
none
Severe chill effect
none
Persistent extensive hill fog
none
Thunderstorms
none
Heavy persistent rain
none

Sat 25 Mar 2017

After a frosty start it will be dry and sunny although some thin high cloud may spoil the sunshine at times. Becoming very mild at lower elevations. Staying dry into the evening.

Time
0600 to 0900 0900 to 1200 1200 to 1500 1500 to 1800 1800 to 2100 2100 to 2400
Weather
Sunny day Sunny day Sunny day Sunny day Clear night Clear night
Precipitation probability
0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%

Visibility

Very good with distant fells visible.

Hill Fog

None expected

Max wind above 500m

Variable 5 mph becoming northeasterly 10 mph later

Temperature

Valleys:
Minus 2 rising to 14 Celsius
800m:
Plus 5 Celsius
Freezing level:
Above the summits

Ground conditions

Latest: 24/03/2017 17:18 Fell Top Assessor's report Friday 24 March, Helvellyn summit at 13:00. There is a thaw at all levels - it was plus 4 degrees on the summit; however given the hard overnight frost, the thaw was not so pronounced at altitude. Conversely, below 600m there was a noticeable thaw. There is now little snow below 450m. Above 450m, the snow depth rises with altitude although the actual depth varies enormously from nothing at all on windswept areas, such as parts of the summit plateau, to drifts deep enough to swallow the shaft of a 55cm ice axe with drifts of 30cm being fairly common above 700m. With milder temperatures, the snowpack is generally very soft. Consequently, walkers contemplating remote walks above the snowline on Saturday should allow extra time for the energy sapping plod through soft deep snow and pack extra Mars Bars (other calorific snacks are available!). Conversely, should the temperature drop, or you are an early riser and the snowpack remains hard after the overnight frost, you might walk on top of the snow without falling through (unless you've had too much chocolate!!) Conditions along Swirral and Striding Edges were mixed. Striding had everything from bare, dry rock, wet rock, ice and patches of compacted hard snow whilst the majority of its length was covered in soft snow which, in places, was unstable. Very unusually, the deepest drifts along the Edge itself were significantly deeper than the snow covering the exit. For anyone contemplating exposed routes above the snowline, such as Striding and Swirral Edges, an ice axe is essential, together with the ability to assess the stability, or otherwise, of the snowpack. Crampons must also be carried in case hard snow or ice is encountered; indeed it is likely that there will be more hard snow along the edges on Saturday owing to the volume of walkers compacting the snow. There is now a significant contrast between the warm, green valleys and the virtual alpine conditions that exist especially above 700m. Although the snowpack was predominantly soft today, walkers out above the snowline on Saturday must be prepared and equipped to encounter hard snow and ice as it would only take a small drop in temperature for the snow to harden and on popular routes the snow has already been compacted into hard snow and ice. With blue skies, snow on the fells and an extremely light breeze, it was an absolute joy to be out today, so come properly equipped with full winter clothing - including spare layers - footwear and equipment and enjoy the wonderful conditions. For those going above the snowline and attempting, or traversing, steep slopes, an ice axe is essential and crampons must be carried. Given the forecast, sunglasses will also be essential and sun tan lotion recommended as the assessor is now feeling the effects of today's sun! Temperature: plus 4.5 C, Maximum wind speed 5.1mph, Wind chill: plus 2.2C, Average wind speed: 3.9 mph.

Sun 26 Mar 2017

Dry and clear in the morning. Cloudier weather with some patchy hill fog may spread from the east later but low confidence for this aspect of the forecast.

Visibility

Very good with good air clarity. Perhaps becoming rather hazy in the east later.

Hill Fog

None in the morning, some patches above 800 metres possible later in the day.

Max wind above 500m

Easterly 10 mph, increasing 25 mph on the higher tops later in the day

Temperature

Valleys:
Minus 1 rising to plus 14 Celsius
800m:
Plus 8 Celsius
Freezing level:
Above the summits

Mon 27 Mar 2017

Dry with variable amounts of cloud and some patchy hill fog, most of this in the south and east. Brisk southeasterly winds across the tops.

Tue 28 Mar 2017

Staying dry and settled with some brightness, chance of some cloud on the higher tops at times. Brisk southeasterly wind.

Wed 29 Mar 2017

Mainly dry but some rain possible later in the day. Windy with southwesterly gales on the tops.

Issued at: 0312 on Sat 25 Mar 2017