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Lake District


High out to the end of the week, but low for Saturday. Higher confidence for colder increasingly settled conditions Sunday then turning more unsettled on Monday, but low for details.

  • This evening
  • Thursday
  • Friday
  • Further outlook

Wednesday 23 January 2019

Sunrise: 08:17   Sunset: 16:34
Moon phase: Waning gibbous

A dry start to the evening, but increasingly cloudy. A few snow showers soon spread into the western Fells, becoming more widespread towards midnight. Light to moderate westerly winds. Freezing level 400-500m, but 200m or less in sheltered eastern valleys.

Thursday 24 January 2019

Weather hazards

Poor visibility High likelihood Hide detail

Poor visibility presents challenging route finding conditions. Visibility could be significantly less than 50 metres in all directions with few or no visual references, especially on featureless moors or plateaux. Distances become hard to judge and cliff or cornice edges can be difficult to recognise. These conditions require good navigational skills. There is a risk of white-out conditions when mist or fog is combined with extensive snow cover.

Severe chill effect Medium likelihood Show detail

Wind significantly lowers the ‘feels-like’ temperature relative to the actual temperature, with even moderate winds significantly adding to the chilling effect. Strong winds can result in a severe and debilitating wind chill many degrees below the actual temperature. This effect will be enhanced in rain or wet snow. Without protection, prolonged exposure could result in frost nip or frostbite on exposed parts of the body and/or hypothermia.


Cold and cloudy. Rain at the end of the day.

Weather at 800m

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Light snow Overcast Cloudy Cloudy Cloudy Overcast Light rain Light rain
60% 30% 20% <05% 20% 40% 60% 70%
Chance of precipitation
500 600 600 400 500 700 900 1,400
Freezing level (m)
The level above which snow is expected to settle or the ground is expected to be frozen

Wind speed and direction (mph) By altitude above mean sea level

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
900m SW 19 22 W 17 20 NW 17 20 NW 18 21 W 16 18 SW 16 19 S 16 19 S 16 19
600m SW 12 16 W 12 17 W 12 17 NW 10 13 W 10 14 SW 10 12 S 10 13 S 13 17
300m SW 3 14 W 3 13 NW 4 13 NW 2 10 W 2 10 SW 3 10 S 3 11 S 4 12
Valley S 1 6 NW 2 10 NW 3 11 N 1 10 NW 1 8 S 1 5 N 1 7 SE 2 8

Temperature (°C) By altitude above mean sea level

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
900m -2 -1 -2 -2 -2 -1 -1 0
600m -1 0 0 -1 0 0 1 1
300m 1 1 1 0 2 2 1 2
Valley 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3

Feels like temperature (°C) By altitude above mean sea level

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
900m -8 -8 -8 -9 -8 -7 -6 -5
600m -6 -5 -5 -6 -5 -4 -4 -3
300m -1 -1 -1 -2 0 0 0 -1
Valley 0 0 0 0 2 2 1 1
Sunrise: 08:15   Sunset: 16:36
Moon phase: Waning gibbous


Cloudy with sleet or snow clearing through the early hours. Dry by dawn. Perhaps the odd brighter spell in the morning but generally cloudy throughout the day. Some patchy light rain and summit snow late afternoon, turning more persistent through the evening with rain at all levels.

Chance of cloud-free mountain/hill tops at 800m

20% around dawn, cloud often extensive above 400-500m, but gradually lifting through the morning. Falling to nil through the afternoon with extensive cloud lowering to 300m in the west, 500-600m in the east.


Poor to start but improving through the morning. Deteriorating to very poor through the afternoon and evening.

Meteorologist's view

A cold, cloudy day. Damp and breezy conditions in the afternoon will further enhance the wind chill.

Ground conditions

Date: Wednesday 23 January. Location: Helvellyn summit at 13:35 With the hard overnight frost, there was ice at all levels, with the majority on paths being at lower altitudes where water had frozen. The snow level begins with a skittering at 200m and the depth rises with height. As usual the actual coverage encountered varies enormously with only a few centimetres on windswept areas to deep drifts of over 60cm with a very approximate average of around 12cm at 900m. The greatest accumulations are found in sheltered spots and hollows and on N and E facing aspects. The snowpack is loose, unconsolidated powder making the going arduous - do allow extra time for this. In addition, on N and E facing slopes, such as the exits to both Striding and Swirral Edges, there was also some windslab (loose unstable snow). Cornices of varying sizes now exist above N and E facing slopes so please keep well back from such edges and advise those with less experience to do likewise. On popular routes the snow has been compacted making conditions slippery, otherwise there's just soft snow to plod through! Full winter clothing (waterproofs, plenty of warm layers, hat & gloves), footwear and equipment (including a headtorch) are essential for anyone venturing out onto the fells. For those going above the snow line and attempting, or traversing, steep slopes, an ice axe and crampons are also essential. With deep snow obscuring landmarks, excellent navigational skills are also required especially if the cloud descends. Conversely, there was blue sky for much of today with some very happy, well equipped folk making the most of the conditions so come similarly properly prepared and join them! Climbers - unfortunately the gullies are full of soft, powder snow. A few folk were on the headwall proving that the routes are not yet in condition! A thaw / freeze is required! Temperature: minus 3.9 C Maximum wind speed 9.7 mph Wind chill: minus 10.3 C Average wind speed: 7.8 mph

Friday 25 January 2019

Sunrise: 08:14   Sunset: 16:37
Moon phase: Waning gibbous


Low cloud and rain through the early hours. Some drier spells likely around dawn, but outbreaks of rain continue through the day, most persistent across western Fells. Rain turns heavier late evening. Strong winds across the tops.

Maximum wind speed expected

West 30 gusting 40 mph.

Chance of cloud-free mountain/hill tops at 800m

Nil with cloud extensive above 300-400m in the west, 500m in the east.


  • At 800m Plus 3 Celsius
  • Valley Plus 4 Celsius rising to 9 Celsius
  • Freezing level Well above the summits.


Very poor at height with persistent low cloud. Falling moderate occasionally poor at low levels in rain.

Saturday 26 January 2019

Sunrise: 08:12   Sunset: 16:39
Moon phase: Third quarter

Very low confidence in details, but a wet day is expected. Outbreaks of rain for much of the day. Turning colder later in the day with strong northerly winds and a wintry showers. Becoming drier overnight.

Sunday 27 January 2019

Sunrise: 08:11   Sunset: 16:41
Moon phase: Third quarter

A cold day with strong northerly winds easing. Mainly dry and bright, perhaps a few scattered snow showers in the morning. Clearing skies overnight.

Monday 28 January 2019

Sunrise: 08:09   Sunset: 16:43
Moon phase: Third quarter

A dry, cold start. Turning increasingly cloudy with strengthening west or northwest winds. Rain and perhaps summit snow spreads east.

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