Winter in Wales

Fancy a Winter break in Wales? There is nothing quite like relaxing in front of a blazing log fire in a cosy cottage, warming up after a long winter walk or maybe a day playing in the snow. The winter months (December, January, February) are our coldest months. The days are short and temperatures are in the region of 0°C to 8°C. A few days of snow are even a possibility.

Frost on the shortest day
Bodes a bad winter

Some of the worst gales of the year have been known to happen in early December. However, this is not usually a very cold period. Temperatures tend to drop off around the middle of the month and frost on the shortest day, December 21st, may well herald a severe winter. At this time of year, the sun rises at around 8am and sets at around 4pm! At no other time of the year are the landscape and the sky so closely matched in colour. The period after Christmas is one of the most predictable weather spells of the year. It is called the ‘post Christmas storm’ which can bring high winds and snow to parts of Wales.

The blackest month in all the year
Is the month of Janiveer

January, on average is the coldest month of the year in Wales and is not overly blessed with hours of sunshine. There are, however, few things better than a Winter break strolling through the fields on a crisp January morning – robins, blackbirds, and thrushes puffing out their feathers to let in the air to keep them warmer. In some ways you can see more in January than in June, because there are fewer leaves. Perhaps you will see an early pair of Jackdaws collecting twigs for their nest as the other creatures of the countryside like frogs, toads and hedgehogs lie asleep, waiting for warmer times.

Better a wolf in the fold
Than a fine February.

The saying refers to the danger of mild weather encouraging the premature growth of crops which may be damaged by frosts later as the Spring plays hide-and-seek with the Winter. There are more young lambs running beside their mother ewes and waggling their fluffy tails. Snowdrops and crocuses begin to appear on the farm drive. Frogs are early wakers and begin to lay their eggs in ditches and ponds but the toads are still asleep. They will not spawn until the warmer days of April.