Winter has come to Prague

The 'Carly' in the snow © Ricky Yates

The ‘Carly’ in the snow © Ricky Yates

With arrival of the New Year has also arrived some serious winter weather. We have had snow – plenty of it, and it is still snowing this evening as I write. The last time we saw snow like this was three years ago in early 2013.

Since the winter 2012-2013, we have had two very mild ones. The winter of 2013-2014 was particularly mild with many Czech ski resorts suffering because a lack of snow and warm temperatures. Last winter was a few degrees colder, but here in Prague, we really only had some snow showers and any snow that did settle, soon melted. But the weather of the past few days has been much more reminiscent of our first five winters in Prague, since moving here in September 2008.

The first snow started falling during the last hour of 2015. It was quite magical to be standing outside with some dog owning neighbours that we have got to know, drinking Bohemia Sekt, celebrating the arrival of the New Year, with fireworks going off and snowflakes falling.

That first snowfall soon melted the next day. But over weekend that followed, temperatures rapidly dropped. Driving into Church for our Eucharist on the morning of Sunday 3rd January, the thermometer in my car gave the temperature as being -4°C. For the first time this winter, I wore my fleece under my cassock-alb, whilst officiating at St. Clement’s 🙂 Then when driving over the Vysocina to Brno in the afternoon, the temperature registered as being -8°C and there was some lying snow on the eastern side of the highlands, and in Brno itself.

The serious snow we now have in Prague, started falling around lunchtime on Monday 4th January. From time-to-time it has stopped snowing for a few hours, but then resumed. And whilst it isn’t now as cold as on Sunday night, the temperature is yet to really get above 0°C.

The weather forecast is that it will finally stop snowing later this evening with the promise of temperatures rising to just above freezing point in the next few days. So for how long we will have lying snow now, is debatable. But it does seem that for the first time in three years, we are going to have a proper Central European winter.

6 comments to Winter has come to Prague

  • Sean Mccann

    Hi Ricky,
    That poor Carly – wouldn’t anyone donate a blanket to it? 😉 The timing of the snowfall was impeccable wasn’t it? Many people in Ireland over the past month have been praying for some cold dry weather as a relief from the flooding caused by the wettest December in 130 years. Hopefully there is a cold snap due next week according to forecasters. Enjoy your ‘real’ winter, keep warm and for Gods sake mind that Carly!

    • Ricky

      Hi Sean,

      I’m sure the poor Carly will survive, as it has during previous winters. As I think I’ve explained before, unfortunately the Church didn’t buy an underground parking space as my predecessor didn’t own a car.

      I do hope that both Ireland & the UK get some cold dry weather, rather than the continual rain that I’ve read & heard about. We are enjoying our ‘real winter’ & the Chaplaincy Flat is well insulated & warm. We just have to dress up in several layers for Church, as the heating there, is fairly limited.

  • I remember that 2012-2013 winter so well, as it was my first in the CR and thinking, “WOW, so this is what a Central European winter is really like!” Of course, I took more winter coats to get ready for the following winter, and it turns out, they weren’t really needed at all! Hah. I’m really enjoying this weather… hope it keeps up a bit longer than the past two years.
    (and yes, New Year’s was so magical with the falling snow at midnight!)

    • Ricky

      Hi Cynthia – The winter of 2012-2013 was similar to our previous four winters & it looks like this winter is going to be similar too, judging by the further snow that’s falling outside as I write this reply to your comment. I hope you still have those winter coats 🙂

      I’m with you – I enjoy a bit of serious snowy weather. And yes – to see in the New Year with falling snow was magical.

  • How long did your snow last, Ricky, and have you had any more since you wrote? Parts of the UK have had snow, some quite a lot, but here in Mid-Wales we’ve only had a short-lived frosting so far.

    • Ricky

      That snow slowly melted over the following week here in Prague. But this past weekend we’ve had a longer and heavier snowfall, and it’s snowing again as I write this reply to yours & Cynthia’s comments.