EUROPe It seems to be a rather cool and unstable start to the summer in northern Europe this year, if Vattenfall’s meteorologists are right in their guesses.

The signs are not encouraging and a lot of things can happen to change the situation, but at this point it looks like there are reasons to keep an umbrella close at hand. Meteorologists Johan Sohlberg’s and Ladislav Brezina’s normal job is to forecast the weather for the planning of Vattenfall’s power production. Now they forecast summer holiday weather. Last year their forecasts were almost on the spot, but this year the situation is more unclear.

Rain in Sweden
“For the Nordic regions there are no really clear signals, but we know that the coming two weeks are going to be quite cool,” says Johan Sohlberg. “For early July the main scenario is that we will have a normal or slightly cool period with more rain than usual, especially on the east coast and in the Baltic Sea region. In the mountain area of northern Sweden and in Norway it will be dryer according to this scenario.  However, when it comes to late July and August I am more optimistic,” he says.

The decisive point is something called the polar vortex, an atmospheric condition that seems to be weakened this year. But there is a chance that the weather will develop in another way and that the summer instead will be really good in most of Sweden. “I would say that there is a forty per cent chance of this happening,” Sohlberg says.

Sun in Spain – again
For the rest of Europe the forecasts are also uncertain, with a higher chance of sunny weather in south west Europe.

“It looks like there is a higher risk of cool and wet weather in the eastern Mediterranean, the Balkans and Greece. France and Iberia have a better chance of warm weather. In Germany and Central Europe it looks unstable; a week of sun is followed by a week of rain. I can’t say at this point when the sun will come,” says Brezina.

Good for Vattenfall
For Vattenfall though the forecast looks promising. Dry weather in northern Sweden is what is needed, as the snow melting is late and the rivers are filling up. More water may have to be released through the dams.

So what is the best advice for anyone now planning their summer holiday?

“I could think of going hiking in the Swedish mountains early July or stay in southern Sweden later this summer. Or maybe take the Hurtigrutten ferry line along the coast of Norway,” Sohlberg says.

“The safest would probably be to go really far south, to Spain for example. A country like Croatia could be trickier,” says Brezina.

But the answer is, as always, blowing in the wind, in this case the polar vortex wind.

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