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Lake District - Mountain weather forecast

Weather warnings

Warnings affecting Lake District over the next 5 days

Confidence

High for a breezy, rather unsettled and generally milder week, but only medium for details and timings of precipitation.

  • This evening
  • Monday
  • Tuesday
  • Further outlook

Sunday 21 January 2018

Sunset: 16:30
Moon phase: Waxing crescent

Mostly cloudy with patchy light rain, sleet and summit snow. Strong to gale force westerly winds.

Monday 22 January 2018

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.

Learn more about poor visibility

Gales Medium likelihood Show detail

Progress will be impeded by very strong winds. Walking will be difficult and strenuous at times with a potential for one to be blown over in gusts. There can be a marked increase in winds through cols or on exposed ridges and summits. Distances often take longer to cover with compass bearings becoming more difficult to follow accurately.

Learn more about gales

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.

Learn more about severe chill effect

Headline

Mostly cloudy with a little rain or summit snow at times. Strong westerly winds.

Weather

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Weather at 800m Cloudy Light snow Cloudy Light snow Cloudy Cloudy Sleet shower Light rain
Chance of precipitation at 800m 40% 60% 40% 60% 30% 30% 60% 60%

Wind speed and direction

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Altitude above mean sea level
900m W 38 45 W 34 40 W 35 41 W 33 39 W 36 42 W 32 38 SW 30 35 SW 34 40
600m W 33 43 W 28 38 W 26 35 W 26 35 W 29 38 W 25 34 SW 24 31 SW 25 33
300m W 12 33 W 10 29 W 9 29 W 10 28 W 11 31 W 9 26 SW 9 25 SW 10 28
Valley W 8 30 W 7 26 W 6 25 W 7 25 W 10 30 W 7 25 SW 8 25 SW 9 28

Temperature

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Altitude above mean sea level
900m 0 ° 0 ° 0 ° 0 ° 0 ° 0 ° 0 ° 1 °
600m 2 ° 2 ° 2 ° 2 ° 2 ° 2 ° 2 ° 3 °
300m 4 ° 3 ° 3 ° 3 ° 4 ° 4 ° 4 ° 5 °
Valley 6 ° 5 ° 6 ° 6 ° 6 ° 6 ° 6 ° 6 °

Feels like temperature

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Altitude above mean sea level
900m -8 ° -9 ° -9 ° -9 ° -9 ° -8 ° -8 ° -7 °
600m -5 ° -6 ° -5 ° -5 ° -5 ° -5 ° -4 ° -4 °
300m -1 ° -1 ° 0 ° 0 ° 0 ° 1 ° 1 ° 1 °
Valley 3 ° 3 ° 4 ° 4 ° 4 ° 4 ° 4 ° 4 °

Freezing level

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Freezing level i 1,000 m 900 m 900 m 900 m 900 m 900 m 900 m 1,100 m
Sunrise: 08:18
Sunset: 16:32
Moon phase: Waxing crescent

Weather

Mostly cloudy with outbreaks of mainly light rain, sleet and snow especially across more western ranges. Some drier spells are likely especially during the afternoon across more eastern fells where a little brightness is possible. During the evening any precipitation is likely to be rain at all levels.

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

Little chance across western fells with periods or persistent cloud above about 600m lowering to 300m at times in precipitation. Chances better in the east but still only around 30% with cloud becoming periods above 750m at times.

Visibility

Good falling to just a few kilometres in rain, sleet and snow

Meteorologist's view

A continuing thaw at all but the highest levels.

Ground conditions

Fell Top Assessor's report Sunday 21 January. Location: Wansfell Pike at 1155. The following ground conditions report comes with a health warning in that snow was falling when the assessor left the fell and this is forecast to continue until the evening. Temperatures are also forecast to rise with rain falling at lower levels - which is now (2pm) happening in Ambleside. Owing to road conditions, the assessor did not climb a high fell today, but found plenty of winter on Wansfell Pike instead! Fresh snow has fallen at all levels adding to the substantial accumulations on the fells. The snow depth rises with height with the deepest drifts of over 100cm to be found above 700m on N to E to S facing slopes. Even at 450m, there were drifts above knee height in sheltered spots and hollows. The snowpack is very soft and this, combined with the depth, makes walking much more of an effort - route planning should take this into consideration. Conversely, on popular routes the snow has been compacted and this hard snow/ice now lies beneath a layer of fresh snow making for slippery conditions that are difficult to see. Although on Saturday there had been a slight consolidation of the snowpack those slopes loaded with the most snow (facing N to E to S above 700m) remained soft and unstable owing to their layers not having bonded and on Monday they will contain even more snow. Anyone climbing, skiing, traversing or simply walking beneath such slopes should only be there if they have the knowledge to assess their stability otherwise please stay well clear as there have been recent avalanches on such slopes. A thaw/freeze cycle will obviously help their consolidation. There are also cornices above such potentially unstable slopes so please keep well back from their edges and advise those with less experience to do likewise. Full winter clothing, footwear and equipment - including ice axe and crampons - are required for anyone venturing out into the medium to high fells; this includes those not attempting steep routes. For example, crampons were useful on the summit plateau on Saturday which was covered in verglas (thin ice) where the snow had been scoured by the wind. For those out on Monday excellent navigational skills are also essential, especially for anyone venturing into cloud as the deep snow obscures all landmarks creating challenging route finding. Goggles are also strongly recommended. When you can see them (!), the Lakeland fells look absolutely stunning in their winter coats so come properly equipped and make the most of the conditions! Temperature: minus 1.4 C. Maximum wind speed 41.3mph. Wind chill: minus 12.0 C. Average wind speed: 30.0mph

Tuesday 23 January 2018

Sunrise: 08:17
Sunset: 16:34
Moon phase: First quarter

Weather

Continuing mostly cloudy with outbreaks of rain, perhaps a little snow on the highest summits, most persistent and occasionally heavy across western fells during the morning and early afternoon.

Maximum wind speed expected

Southwesterly winds 30-35mph, with gusts around 55mph over ridges and summits, easing later

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

Similar to Monday with little chance across western ranges with periods or persistent cloud above about 600m lowering to 300m at times with cloud over eastern fells lifting to become periods above about 750m at times.

Temperature

  • At 800m Plus 2 Celsius rising to plus 5 Celsius.
  • Valley Around plus 6 Celsius rising to plus 11 Celsius by day.
  • Freezing level Above the summits.

Visibility

Good falling to just a few kilometres in rain and summit snow

Wednesday 24 January 2018

Sunrise: 08:15
Sunset: 16:36
Moon phase: First quarter

Early rain clearing to sunny spells and occasional showers, these turning increasingly to snow above about 750m. Gale or severe gale force southwesterly winds at times. Freezing level falling to around 900m.

Thursday 25 January 2018

Sunrise: 08:14
Sunset: 16:37
Moon phase: First quarter

Clear or sunny spells and wintry showers, falling mainly as snow above about 600m, the showers may merge to give a longer spells of rain or snow during the late morning. Southwesterly gales turning more westerly and easing later. Freezing level falling to around 750m.

Friday 26 January 2018

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

A few snow showers, falling increasingly as rain below about 600m, with some decent spells of sunshine. Cloud increasing later with risk of more persistent rain and snow during the evening. Strong westerly or northwesterly winds backing southwesterly later. Freezing level around 750m.

Issued at:
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The Lake District covers an area of 885 square miles with its highest point, Scafell Pike, standing at 978 metres.

Scafell Pike is the highest mountain in England. From its summit, the view spans from the Mourne Mountains in Northern Ireland to Snowdonia in Wales. The Lake District also contains the deepest and longest lakes in England; Wastwater and Windermere.

Much smaller than its Scottish counterparts, but no less breathtaking, is the Lake District National Park. While unarguably most famous for the lakes and waters from which it took its name, the National Park certainly has plenty to offer climbers as well. Not only that, special routes have been created (known as Miles Without Stiles) to offer more laid back, moderate walks.

Those looking for a challenge are suitably catered for with the Lakeland Fells, as made famous by rambler and cartographer Alfred Wainwright. These include some of the highest peaks in England: Scafell Pike (978 metres), Scafell (965 metres), Helvellyn (951 metres) and Skiddaw (931 metres).

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