Moscow Weather (and other places as well)

Discussion in 'Samovar Teahouse' started by Moscow Exile, Sep 29, 2013.

  1. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Talking about the weather is supposed to be one of the favourite pastimes of my fellow countrymen. I should add, however, that I find meteorology extremely interesting and I love poring over meteorological records, which, I suppose, is rather similar to perusing arcane cricket test match statistics or collections of data concerning steam railway locomotives, their numbers and where and when they were observed working. Yes, I confess, I was a trainspotter .

    Anyway, of late I have noticed on a couple of occasions in another site concerned with Russian matters how some US citizens stated that Moscow is no colder than New York in winter. I begged to differ, albeit that I have never visited New York at any time of year: I just let the available weather data speak for themselves. Nevertheless, my US interlocutors still persisted with their claim that New York and Moscow winter temperatures are similar, the relevant data notwithstanding; that it felt no colder in winter in Moscow than it does at the same time of the year in New York.

    Here's one statistic about Moscow winters that I can vouch for: during the past 20 years that I have been resident in Moscow, I have experienced minus 30C (minus 22F) twice - in December 1997 and in February 2006. In fact, those bitterly cold December temperatures that lasted for one week 16 years ago reached a low one night of minus 33C.

    To settle this issue, hopefully once and for all, I intend to record maximum and minimum temperatures in Moscow and New York and post up the resultant data next spring.

    There are still 2 months left before winter officially starts here, but to kick off, I have enclosed the picture below:

    [​IMG]

    The above picture was taken last Wednesday, September 25, 2013, at Yuzhnaya-Zapadnaya metro station, Moscow, where it was reported that snow began to fall at 15:07 and lasted for about 7 minutes.

    The temperature now in central Moscow at 17:28, 29th September 2013, is plus 5C (41F) and a night time temperature of minus 1C (30.2F) is forecast.
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2013
  2. Philip Owen

    Philip Owen Office Registrar (13th class)

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    Meanwhile, in Wales it is unusually warm. It was up to 23 C last week. The same air circulation pattern that is warming us is cooling you.

    The Epiphany Frosts in Saratov in 2012 had a few nights below 30, maybe 32. It makes me lightheaded breathing at that temperature. It's about the third time I've experienced it. February 2006 was another and I forget the third, maybe 2009. Saratov is further South than Moscow but gets colder. More of a continental climate I suppose. I was told on my first visit in 1996 that the traditional day of first snow was 19 November and Lo and Behold, it turned up on cue.
  3. Carlo

    Carlo Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Perhaps your Yankee friends are not so crazy and here you gave the key to understand them: Moscow, being far from the ocean, is way drier than New York, and therefore it feels not colder even though the nominal temperature is much lower. I live in Buenos Aires, and at 25º with such a high humidity I get all sweat; when I was in Moscow in June 2011, even though the temperature was around 28º, I hardly felt it was that hot.
  4. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Yes, there was a third minus 30C period that I have experienced, but when I wrote earlier, I couldn't exactly recall the year: 2009, and again in February.

    As regards it feeling colder in the UK than the actual air temperature suggests that one should not feel so cold, my wife, together with some other Russians with whom I am acquainted, has said that she has sometimes felt colder in the UK than she would have felt in much colder temperatures in Russia.

    As regards my wife's opinion, I put that down to the damp UK climate - and lack of central heating. She first uttered that opinion when we were staying in my old house one January: there was neither central heating nor double glazing in that house. I well remember the shock she expressed when she woke up one morning to see the insides of the bedroom windows glazed over with fern-like patterns formed from our frozen night time exhalations that had condensed on the window panes. She told me that she had never experienced such a thing before in bedrooms, only on the frozen insides of trolley-bus and tram windows during a Moscow winter.

    The time of the Russian Orthodox feast of the Epiphany (крещение [kreshcheniye]: 6th January Gregorian calendar; 19th January, Julian and Orthodox Church calendar) is often, in my experience, the coldest time of year in Moscow. It's also the time when some of the Russian Orthodox faithful choose to take an outside dip after having first broken the ice. However, in recent years it has occasionally been much colder in February than in the previous month. That extremely cold spell of February 2006 that I recall followed quite a mild January, one of wet snow and temperatures of only a few degrees below zero. Then one evening late in that January, when it was only about minus 2C, I noticed the weather forecast on my computer weather program, in which it stated that in the course of the next 24 hours the temperature would plummet to minus 30. At first I thought that had to be an error: it wasn't.

    As regards the present above normal temperatures in Wales, I, together with very many Muscovites, was hoping for a "St.Martin's" or "Indian Summer", as this past summer has been the wettest and coldest that I have ever experienced here. As my family and I all headed back to Moscow from our dacha at the end of our wet and dreary summer sojourn there, I thought to myself that by the "law of averages", as it were, we were bound to have a pleasant September and October, but it was not to be - well, not for September at least. Perhaps we may, after all, enjoy a "Golden October".

    I have not seen the Russian meteorological service long term forecast for this coming winter yet. Whatever it may be, though, I should expect it to be pretty accurate.

    I think that the weather forecasts here are more accurate than they are in the UK. Perhaps this is because of the notorious changeability of British weather systems that come hurtling in from the Atlantic Ocean; whereas in Russia, forecasting the weather is comparatively easy: winter - cold, summer - hot.
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2013
  5. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Moscow News reports that the present cold spell in the capital could break records.

    [​IMG]
  6. Philip Owen

    Philip Owen Office Registrar (13th class)

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    Damn, No short skirts. I arrive in Russia on Thursday!
  7. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Yeah, I was thinking that as well earlier today when it started snowing as I was going to work.

    Roll on summer!
  8. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    ЗИМА ПРИШЛА!

    Winter is come at last!

    [​IMG]

    See: В Москву пришел снег

    "За сутки в Москве может выпасть до 5 см снега. Накануне столичный регион уже получил 22% ноябрьской нормы осадков. Во вторник вечером температура в Москве и Подмосковье опустится ниже нуля"

    [Up to 2 inches of snow may fall in Moscow during the course of the next 24 hours. The area surrounding the capital has already received above 22% of the precipitation norm during the previous 24 hours and on Tuesday evening the temperature in Moscow and its surrounds will fall to below zero Celsius.]

    All day yesterday at the janitors' yard behind my house where the snow ploughs and tractors are parked, Tadzhik "dvorniki" (дворники), who will soon be delegated round-the-clock snow sweeping duties, were busily unloading a huge delivery of salt and grit and anti-freeze chemicals in preparation for this evening's arrival of winter, which is about a week late already.

    [​IMG]
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  9. Drutten

    Drutten Collegiate Secretary (10th class)

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    When's the best time to visit Moscow you residents reckon? Not only weather-wise but also taking other factors into account (whatever those might be, you would know better than I).
  10. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    The summer months are usually quite warm in European Russia and very warm in the south in the Krasnodar Region. I've experienced the high 20s (Centigrade) many times in July and even the low 30s. There are some bad summers - as last year's was - though.

    September and Golden October can be nice as well if there's a "Grandmother's Summer", but again, there wasn't one last year.

    I shouldn't advise coming in spring though - it gets very dirty in late March and early April because of the thaw.

    Winter's fine if you like winter weather, but then again, this winter has been bloody awful so far! We were deep under snow until about December 12th, since when the temperatures have been hovering around zero because of warm air being pumped across Western Europe as a result of continuous huge Atlantic storms. The cold Siberian air keeps trying to roll back, but so far without much success, although they say normal January temperatures will resume in 2 or 3 day's time, a low of minus 17C being forecast for next week.

    Here are a few pictures of my dacha and the area nearby, taken on December 8th 2013:


    x.jpg y.jpg z.jpg
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2014
  11. Drutten

    Drutten Collegiate Secretary (10th class)

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    I know what springs are like up here, and with the more continental climate of Euro-Russia I think I've got an idea of what it's like over there. Slush and mud galore. Winter is fine, but being all snowed in and stuff is nothing new to me so I don't think that would contribute to the overall experience in a positive way (though I guess that certain tourists find the stereotypical Russian winter well exotic).

    I was thinking of late summer or early fall. I am not familiar with this "Grandmother's summer" expression, please do elaborate!

    That looks an awful lot like your average Swedish summer house colony. :) Nice and cozy. I have a "dacha" of sorts as well, but technically the landlord doesn't approve of winter stays (though I go there anyway, for ice fishing and such).
  12. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Yes, it does look a little like Sweden, only there all the wooden frame houses are of the same colour - oxblood- and in every garden there flies a Swedish flag. I lived for a spell in a tiny crossroads settlement called Smitterstad in Småland.

    And the bloody mosquitoes in the countryside around Moscow are as they are in Sweden as well, at least, they are where my dacha is situated near Mozhaisk and not far from the Borodino battlefield.

    By the way, that's a good reason for not coming in June, when the mosquitoes are at their most active.

    I don't know why I wrote "Grandmother's Summer": it's "Old Woman's Summer" - in Russian: Бабье лето (bab-ye lye-to). It's what Americans call "Indian Summer", when September and October are warm and the forest leaves are red and golden.

    Here's a picture taken on 10th October, 2010, of my then 11-year-old son, Vladimir, doing what Russians do in what I call "Golden October". They like weaving wreathes out of fallen golden sycamore leaves when there's an "Old Woman's Summer".

    z.jpg
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2014
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  13. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    At long last winter has returned to Moscow!

    Minus 12C maximum forecast tomorrow, minus 15C minimum and continuous snow that began to fall on the night of the 15th/16th is only forecast to stop over the weekend and lows of minus 25C forecast for the weekend and next week.

    It was only as recently as January 10th that it was raining in Moscow.

    2013 had one of the coolest, wettest summers on record followed by no "Indian (or Old Woman's) Summer". Although there was heavy snow until 12th December, that month turned out to be the warmest on record, with temperatures of 4 and 5C over Christmas and the New Year.

    But now...


    Зима пришла!

    16jan14.jpg


    6293660.jpg



    At Sokolniki Park today:

    6294538.jpg

    It's 200 metres long and 13 metres high.

    There' a free open-air ice rink there as well that has an area of 17,000 square metres.
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2014
  14. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    The cold won't stop girls like the one shown below taking a dip on Sunday, 19th January (6th January Old Style), the Orthodox feast of Christ's Christening, such is the strength of their faith.

    6294435.jpg
  15. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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