Sunday we saw a summer day in the north with over 28 degrees locally. Already tomorrow Tuesday, Mamertus Day, the temperatures will be mercilessly low. During Snow Saints, from Wednesday to Saturday, it will still be cold, but there will probably be no frost.
On Sunday we experienced early summer weather in a single day with a daily peak in Basel of 28.6 degrees. Temperatures exceeded 25 degrees Celsius, which is called Summer Day. Even today, Monday, it is still warm in central and eastern Switzerland thanks to a strong storm in the Alps.
Tomorrow Tuesday, Mammartus Day, the cold front will bring an abrupt end to the beginning of summer. In the afternoon the temperature is barely above 13 degrees. But be careful: Mammertus was not a saint in Switzerland or southern Germany, so he is not considered an ice saint either. But also from Wednesday, Pankratius’ Day, to Saturday, Cold Sophie’s Day, it remains cold with temperatures well below the long-term average.
The frost will probably not be there
Not snow or afternoon freezing temperatures, but frost is the namesake of ice saints. We’ve already had enough of it this spring. Although it is mostly cold until Saturday, there will likely be no frost this year. There are just too many clouds for that, so it doesn’t get very cold at night.
Ice Saints: Fact or Fake News?
This year, Ice Saints are living up to their bad image, and it has always been very cold for the past three years. During this time, there was only a large amount of frost on the ground during the 2019 Snow Saints. The cooling during the Ice Saints is more than a coincidence. Since the turn of the twentieth century, temperatures in Basel have been 11 times (19.6 degrees) below the May average and 9 times higher than the average. The situation is similar in the south of the Alps. At 20.2 °, the afternoon temperature in Lugano during the Glacial Saints is fully in line with the average temperature in May. In short: There is no statistical effect of any significant cooling during the Ice Saint.
Ground frost is only in exceptional cases
Since 1990, it has only been 5 years since at least one morning frost in Basel and Zurich airport. So the horror of the Ice Saints is also limited to these stats. But it is also a fact that there was always ground frost in both terminals in the second half of the mail, rarely even in the beginning of June.
Sophie used to be really cold
In 1972 Cold Sophie gave us a cold shoulder. In Basel at that time the daily maximum temperature was 8.1 degrees, and the average temperature for four days was 11.9 in the afternoon. It’s much milder these days with afternoon temperatures around 16 degrees. In this area too, Ice Saints are definitely not the measure of all things. It was really scary at the knee of the Rhine on May 25, 1983 with a daily high of 7.3 degrees. By the way, after a day in Zurich, there was only 6.0 daily maximum scores.
Servatius with sweat
In the early 1960s, Ice Saints continued to flip-flop. It was Ice Saints in 1969. Too extreme in Servatiustag there was a maximum value of 31.6 degrees in Basel, and the day after Basel the official temperature was 31.0 degrees. In 2015, it was very warm in Basel during the Snow Saints. On May 12th, it measured 29.8 degrees at the Rhine River knee.
More balanced south of the Alps
In 1980 in Lugano only 10.9 was measured on the Sophienag, and on May 13, 1978 it was slightly milder. However, there have not been single-digit maximum values since 1960. On the other hand, there has never been a hot day in Lugano during the Ice Saints. In 1960, a maximum value of 28.4 degrees was measured in Lugano. At the time, the average afternoon temperature was 26.4 degrees. In short: Ice Saints live mostly from their myths and from popular media, too, in 2021!
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