Weather Friday, April 1: snowy day

By Regis CREPE, meteorologist

Winter is back in force by this April 1st and it’s not a fish! Cold, steady breezes and snowfall will bring February-worthy all-winter weather. The cold air even reaches the edge of the Mediterranean Sea, where the fierce mistral blows.

Remember:


scattered snow but lasts from Hauts de France to the central regions all day. The snow won’t block you for sure, but driving can be tricky, especially from the first low elevation terrain. However, be careful in mountainous areas.


bitter cold intensified by the piercing wind: one must hide, as in the very heart of winter.


Episode of cruel mistral, tramontana westerly wind in the south-east of France with gusts above 120 – 130 km/h on open headlands.


Meteorological context:




Very cold air from Scandinavia reaches France and rushes to the Mediterranean Sea. The temperature drops 6-8°C below normal! “Return from the East” brings the snowy episode from Hauts-de-France to Massif Central via Centre, Ile-de-France and Normandy. This situation, while not exceptional for early April, is nonetheless remarkable. In the southeast, the arrival of cold air causes a strong mistral.


Details by region:


On the Hauts-de-France, Ile-de-France, Normandy and Center, the weather is snowy all day, but especially in the morning. The northeasterly wind blows at 80 to 100 km/h at sea and 70 km/h on land, adding to the feeling of very cold or even icy air. Snow covers the countryside, especially hilly areas and plateaus, while it does not linger in large valleys and cities. In the afternoon, these snowfalls become more rare, and with a weak positive temperature, the dust will largely melt. But the weather remains very cold for this season, barely exceeding 3°C to 5°C during the day.


To the northwest clearings alternate with cumulus clouds in Brittany and the Pays de la Loire, but even there the north wind is strong and cold. Lower Normandy is at the limit of the snow cover that will affect the Orne and the eastern part of Calvados.


Great Southwest bbenefits from the return of decimations, but it is also cold. It snows in Limousin, while New Aquitaine is drier with occasional showers. The Pyrenees and Piedmont remain choked with snow between 400 and 500 meters above sea level, and it rains in the Basque Country.


To the northeast the morning snow is falling in Champagne-Ardennes, and it should not stick much to the ground, as it will remain light under the gray sky. The weather stays cold with these very cloudy skies all day. At the end of the day from Germany over Alsace and the Vosges, a small snowfall can come, which can stay on the ground from 300 to 400 m, descending to the plain during the night from Friday to Saturday.


In the center eastThe cold falls especially to the west of the Rhône and Saône, while in the Alps the decrease in temperature during the day and evening is more gradual. Thus, between Morvan, Loire, Auvergne and Stephanois, it is cold almost all day with wind and snow, while it will rain in Lyon and the Alpine valleys (snow above 600-800 m, then it will snow at night from Friday to Saturday).


in the southeast, the wind intensifies and will reach the threshold of the storm in the region of the mistral, tramontana and west wind in Corsica. Wind gusts exceed 130 km/h in open areas, and more often 100 km/h. It will remain cloudy in Corsica, but the sky will simply be cloudy elsewhere. The drop in temperature will be very noticeable. In the afternoon, the Alpes-Maritimes on the border with Italy may be hit by stormy rains with sleet.


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