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Weather for Travel

Updated on September 10, 2017

Unpredictable Weather Events

One of the most vexing challenges often overlooked by travellers is the weather. It is important to be well prepared for different weather conditions and we do that by following weather forecasts. Local weather may also differ from what is in the weather report. Some parts of the world have unpredictable weather on a persistent basis while in other parts of the world weather patterns are changing. There are also new phenomena that have never been experienced.

There are predictable patterns of weather in some parts of the US such as the Western Coast that is currently experiencing drought. In this way, California is the most stable in terms of temperature and rainfall patterns. The most random weather in the US throughout the entire year occurs in Kansas City and Rapid City. The temperature may jump there anytime and odd storms appear in summer as well as winter.

In places such as London, there may be unusually warm temperature in January, yet there are cold snaps in June. This can cause unusual flowering seasons with insect infestations, such as a high number of spiders. When travelling to London in winter, travelers may need to be prepared that at the beginning or the end of winter there may be some unusual weather events that is also associated with different animal behavior. As such, there were more spiders during unusually warm days and spiders such as Daddys long legs were more often seen.

Cold places, such as Alaska experience unusually warm weather. On the other hand, dry places, including Texas suffer from flooding that also affected Ghana and Myanmar in 2015.

There are heat waves in otherwise relatively wet Western Europe. In New York and the US East Coast icy and stormy winters became a pattern. Storm lightnings that can appear in the middle of snowing became a new phenomena.

Contrasting weather ensues in dry places, with flooding occurring in one of the driest places that is the Atacama Desert in Chile in 2015. Heavy rainfalls also affected other dry areas in South America that year.

Cold temperatures of Northern Europe have eased during winter while there are unpredictable winds, storms and other weather patterns. Flooding occurs on a persistent basis in the Southern parts of the US and Australia but the most extreme and random weather patterns appear in the Northern Hemisphere. So-called atmospheric blocking is responsible for certain unpredictable weather events due to pressure system's inability to move.

The most severe impact of unpredictable weather events involves earthquakes. Although it is always difficult to predict when and where they will occur, the most affected region is in so called Ring of Fire. Chile seems to be the country with the heaviest earthquakes, but despite that the areas most frequented by tourists such as Atacama Desert in the north and Patagonia in the south are never affected despite their wide ranging reach. The country has also buildings appropriately constructed for these events.

Autumn in Northern Europe
Autumn in Northern Europe

Is there Good Weather For Travel?

Such weather events add additional pressure for travelers that need adequate clothing as well as protective accessories. Warm winter clothing may end up being too warm or not sufficiently warm att times during unexpected winds making the weather even colder.

Various weather applications supply the necessary information. Weather radars are updated every 15 minutes, but for extreme weather events even this can be too long. Travelers need to do even more research now about the places they visit.

Apart from standard weather information on iPhones, there are applications such as WeatherBug or Weather from NOAA for Android for emergency events.

While hurricanes and cyclones can be detected earlier with warnings issued before they have any impact earthquakes are most of the time unpredictable and dangerous. When traveling, it is not always obvious where a disaster may happen. The earthquake in Mexico in September 2017 proved to be impossible to predict delivering a widespread damage in 10 Mexican states that in some areas was comparable to bombardment. The man holding a Mexican flag amidst the ruin and destruction went viral, as Mexican people attempt to unite amidst the devastation.

Weather Changes in Europe

Weather in Europe can be unpredictable in the same way that it is in other parts of the world. Traditionally warm weather in Europe in August also can be interrupted by fires in countries such as Greece, Spain or France.

The warmest temperature in summer is in European cities such as Athens, Lisbon, Majorca, South of France, South of Spain and South of Italy. Western countries tend to be warmer and wetter than Central European countries that are also colder in winter.

In the same way, European weather in August 2014 experienced heavy rainfalls and floods in places such as Canary Islands or even in places such as Sweden. Flooding can occur not just during the spring, but also during winter or summer.

© 2015 ainezk


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