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Mourne Mountains - Mountain weather forecast

Weather warnings

Warnings affecting Mourne Mountains over the next 5 days

Confidence

High for the cold showery spell through to Saturday, then turning milder from Sunday, though lower confidence for timings of showers.

  • Thursday
  • Friday
  • Further outlook

Thursday 14 December 2017

Weather hazards

Gales High likelihood Hide 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 High 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

Poor visibility High likelihood Show 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

Blizzards Medium likelihood Show detail

Blizzards and whiteouts present challenging and serious conditions due to a combination of falling or blowing snow, strong winds and cold temperatures. They can be highly disorientating, often resulting in near-zero visibility with limited or no visual references and no distinction between ground and sky. Cliff edges and cornices may not be apparent, even close up. These conditions require very good navigational skills.

Learn more about blizzards

Heavy snow Low likelihood Show detail

Expect snow to rapidly accumulate with deep drifts also possible during windy conditions. Progress will be time consuming and physically strenuous, which will significantly affect the distance one is able to travel on foot. Paths will become hidden and difficult to follow, while very poor visibility during snowfall will make route-finding challenging. A heightened avalanche risk is likely and avalanche reports should be consulted where available.

Learn more about heavy snow

Thunderstorms Low likelihood Show detail

Lightning is a significant mountain hazard which can result in serious injury or death. Mountain terrain often leaves one highly exposed to lightning strikes. Hail may give unpleasant conditions with torrential rain and localised flash flooding also possible, mainly in Summer months.

Learn more about thunderstorms

Strong sunlight Low likelihood Show detail

Harmful UV levels from sunlight increase with altitude giving a greater risk of sunburn and eye damage, even on some overcast days. On breezy days, the cooling effect of wind on exposed skin may disguise any feeling of sunburn until it is too late. If there is snow cover, glare increases the effect of UV rays especially on the eyes. It is advisable to wear sun block, protective clothing such as a long-sleeved top and hat and have good quality eye protection.

Learn more about strong sunlight

Headline

Some sunshine, but also cold with scattered wintry showers.

Weather

06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Weather at 700m Heavy snow shower night Heavy snow shower day Heavy snow shower day Sunny intervals Cloudy Light rain
Chance of precipitation at 700m 70% 80% 80% 40% 30% 60%

Wind speed and direction

06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Altitude above mean sea level
600m W 41 55 W 36 49 SW 30 41 NW 32 45 NW 32 44 NW 37 51
300m W 21 37 W 19 33 SW 15 26 NW 18 32 NW 19 33 NW 20 36
Valley W 17 35 W 16 32 W 13 27 NW 15 30 NW 15 30 NW 16 34

Temperature

06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Altitude above mean sea level
600m -2 ° -2 ° -1 ° 0 ° 0 ° 0 °
300m 0 ° 0 ° 1 ° 2 ° 2 ° 2 °
Valley 1 ° 1 ° 2 ° 3 ° 2 ° 3 °

Feels like temperature

06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Altitude above mean sea level
600m -12 ° -11 ° -10 ° -9 ° -9 ° -9 °
300m -7 ° -6 ° -5 ° -4 ° -4 ° -5 °
Valley -5 ° -4 ° -3 ° -2 ° -3 ° -2 °

Freezing level

06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Freezing level i 300 m 300 m 400 m 600 m 700 m 600 m
Sunrise: 08:36
Sunset: 16:01
Moon phase: Waning crescent

Weather

Occasional wintry showers, some heavy, with the small chance of hail and thunder. The showers of snow above 300m with sleet lower down, tending to rise to 450m through the day. The showers becoming more isolated from late afternoon. Cold with a severe chill expected, and temporary blizzard conditions expected.

Chance of cloud-free mountain/hill tops at 700m

30% with showers bring cloud down to 500m, but becoming 60% by late afternoon with cloud more scattered and generally lifting to around 800m.

Visibility

Moderate or poor overnight but becoming good or excellent in the morning though rapid deteriorations in showers.

Meteorologist's view

Valley temperatures will be lower in places overnight down to Minus 2 locally. Also mean winds speeds at lower levels look too light but gusts seem more realistic.

Friday 15 December 2017

Sunrise: 08:37
Sunset: 16:01
Moon phase: Waning crescent

Weather

Sleet or snow clearing in early hours then a few wintry showers, these mainly onto northern and northeastern slopes, but then a generally dry and bright day, with sunny spells. Perhaps more in the way of showers in the late afternoon, but falling as rain below around 450m.

Maximum wind speed expected

Northerly 30 to 35mph with gusts 50mph over exposed ridges at first, but gradually easing and becoming northwesterly later.

Chance of cloud-free mountain/hill tops at 700m

80% with generally scattered cloud near the tops, but chance decreasing in showers, especially later in the day with cloud lowering to around 450m at times.

Temperature

  • At 700m Minus 3 Celsius
  • Valley Around zero, rising to plus 4 Celsius
  • Freezing level Around 600m

Visibility

Good or excellent but moderate or poor in showers.

Saturday 16 December 2017

Sunrise: 08:38
Sunset: 16:01
Moon phase: Waning crescent

Showers, these occasional early morning, isolated from mid-morning, then patchy rain and summit snow spreading to the west late evening as freezing levels lift above the tops. Moderate to fresh winds.

Sunday 17 December 2017

Sunrise: 08:39
Sunset: 16:01
Moon phase: New

Patchy, mainly light rain, but rather misty with a good deal of hill fog. Clearing to isolated showers later with some clear spells leading to patchy mist and fog forming at low levels. Gale force south or southwesterly winds turning westerly in afternoon but easing later in teh day. Freezing level well above the tops

Monday 18 December 2017

Sunrise: 08:40
Sunset: 16:01
Moon phase: New

Cloudy and mild with rain at times, occasionally heavy later with extensive hill fog. Strong westerly winds will become southwesterly with gale over the tops later. Freezing level remaining above the tops

Issued at:
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The Mourne Mountains are a granite mountain range in County Down in the southeast of Northern Ireland, is an area of outstanding natural beauty, and has been proposed as the first National Park in Northern Ireland.

The Mourne Mountains include the highest mountains in Northern Ireland; the highest of these is Slieve Donard standing at 850 metres at the northeastern edge of the Mournes, overlooking Newcastle and Dundrum Bay. At the summit of Slieve Donard there is a cairn and a small stone tower, which is part of the Mourne Wall, which passes over the mountain’s southern and western shoulders.

The Mourne Wall is a 35 kilometre dry stone wall that crosses fifteen summits, constructed between 1904 and 1922 by the Belfast Water Commissioners to define and enclose the catchment area for the newly constructed Silent Valley Reservoir.

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