“A blanket of snow will form quickly on the frozen ground,” said meteorologist Jens Hoffmann at DWD headquarters in Offenbach. Although initially the sun will shine in large areas of Germany, up to 10 centimetres of snow are expected on Saturday in the north and northeast, followed by a bitter cold at the beginning of next week.
The insulating cloud cover will drift southward on Monday, leaving what Hoffmann described as “the perfect recipe for night frost.” The temperatures above the snow blanket could then plummet to minus 20 degrees.
According to meteorologists, the lowest temperatures are expected in the Harz mountain region, Brandenburg, Saxony-Anhalt and parts of Saxony. Southern Germany will probably be spared the worst.
Hoffmann said such temperatures are “not unusual” for the time of the year, pointing out that last January had been particularly mild. With an average temperature of 4.1 degrees Celsius above the seasonal norm, January 2008 was the sixth warmest January since the beginning of the 20th century.