Heavy May snowfall takes Iceland by surprise

May 02, 2011
A woman stands in the snow in the center of Reykjavik. Iceland saw its first May snowfall for almost a decade over the weekend, with more than 16 centimetres falling on the capital Reykjavik, meteorologists said Sunday.

Iceland saw its first May snowfall for almost a decade over the weekend, with more than 16 centimetres falling on the capital Reykjavik, meteorologists said Sunday.

"We recorded 16,4 centimetres of in the Reykjavik area and the small town of Hvalfjoerdur (a few kilometres north of the capital) received 18 centimetres," Thorsteinn Jonsson from the Icelandic Meteorological Office told AFP.

"It's the first time since 1993 that it has snowed in May (in Reykjavik)," he said, adding that it was the second most significant May since 1987, when 18 centimetres fell on the capital.

"We did not see it coming and we were as surprised as everyone else in Reykjavik," he added.

The snow fell from Saturday evening through Sunday morning on Iceland's west coast, where "an air mass... brought temperatures below zero and turned the rain into snow," said Mr Jonsson, who said the spell looked to be over.

"This afternoon and this evening it will return to rain, and perhaps we'll wake up to summer tomorrow with some sun," he added.

Explore further: Magnitude-7.2 earthquake shakes Mexican capital

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Australia swaps summer for Christmas snow

Dec 20, 2010

Snow fell in Australia on Monday, as the usual hot and summery December weather was replaced in parts by icy gusts sweeping up from the Southern Ocean, giving the country a taste of a white Christmas.

Radar used to study snow, sleet, rain

Mar 19, 2006

The University of Helsinki has acquired a state-of-the-art polarimetric weather radar to study the physics of rain clouds, snow and sleet.

Earth from Space: A smoke-free Iceland

Jun 04, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- This Envisat image features a smoke-free Iceland. Although the island has received a lot of attention in the past months for its volcanic activity, it is also home to numerous glaciers, lakes, ...

Iceland fears 2nd, even larger volcanic eruption

Mar 21, 2010

(AP) -- A volcano in southern Iceland has erupted for the first time in almost 200 years, raising concerns that it could trigger a larger and potentially more dangerous eruption at a volatile volcano nearby.

Recommended for you

Magnitude-7.2 earthquake shakes Mexican capital

Apr 18, 2014

A powerful magnitude-7.2 earthquake shook central and southern Mexico on Friday, sending panicked people into the streets. Some walls cracked and fell, but there were no reports of major damage or casualties.

User comments : 2

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Norezar
not rated yet May 02, 2011
Eww, snow.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (2) May 02, 2011
Ice in Iceland?
People can't remember 10 years ago?
What surprise?

More news stories

China says massive area of its soil polluted

A huge area of China's soil covering more than twice the size of Spain is estimated to be polluted, the government said Thursday, announcing findings of a survey previously kept secret.

UN weather agency warns of 'El Nino' this year

The UN weather agency Tuesday warned there was a good chance of an "El Nino" climate phenomenon in the Pacific Ocean this year, bringing droughts and heavy rainfall to the rest of the world.

Making graphene in your kitchen

Graphene has been touted as a wonder material—the world's thinnest substance, but super-strong. Now scientists say it is so easy to make you could produce some in your kitchen.