Germany struck by snow and frost as wintry temperatures return

Winter seems to have returned to Germany on the first day of April as several regions in Germany were hit by snow.

Snow in Lower Saxony
A man walked on a snowy street lined with cherry blossom trees in Laatzen, Lower Saxony, on April 1st. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Julian Stratenschulte

According to the German Weather Serivce (DWD), both high and lower-altitude regions saw heavy snow, with parts of the motorway in North Rhine-Westphalia needing to be de-iced.

On Friday afternoon, more snowfall was expected in central and southern Germany, particularly in the regions surrounding the Alps. In the northern half of the country, temperatures in the low single-digits and windstorms were forecast.

Slippery roads are also possible again due to the snow and ice. A spokesperson for the German Weather Service told DPA that people in the coldest areas should drive with caution. 

In Baden-Württemberg, fresh snow fell in the Black Forest and the Swabian Alps on Friday morning and is set to continue into the weekend.

According to DWD, up to 10 centimetres of snow may fall over the course of the day, particularly in the northeast of Baden-Württemberg at higher elevations. 

People in Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and Thuringia can also expect a wintry Friday, with snowfall at times.

The first day of the weekend looks set to bring even more snow to the south, with up to 10 inches of snowfall at higher altitudes. The cold spell is likely to retreat during the night, however, with the winter wonderland becoming a little more springlike over the course of Sunday.

READ ALSO: Germany to see return of winter weather

For those desperate for a return to clear blue skies and balmy temperatures, meteorologists have some bad news.

“Will it be spring-like again? No,” says DWD’s Tobias Reinartz. “Although it will become somewhat milder again (which is no real feat), it will mostly remain cool for April in the coming week.

“It will also be stormy and very unstable with some sleet now and then. All in all, the weather will be more autumnal than spring-like.”

DWD has also warned that the return of wintry temperatures after several weeks of warmth and sunshine could pose a problem for gardeners whose plants are already in bloom.

Frost damage is a particular risk for plants close to the ground, with the potential to damage crops of strawberries and other fruits. 

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Germany set for scorching temperatures up to 30C

After days of summery weather, temperatures in Germany are set to peak at around 30C this week before a cooler spell over the weekend.

Germany set for scorching temperatures up to 30C

After a long spell of sunny weather, most parts of Germany could see summer arrive early this week with clear blue skies and sweltering temperatures – but the hot weather may not last long, according to meteorologists.

Heat and sunshine should last through the middle of the week but suddenly give way to cooler temperatures over the weekend, the German Weather Service (DWD) predicts.

On Tuesday, most regions see temperatures in the mid to high 20s and a continuation of the dry weather of the past week. In the northeast, including Berlin, the mercury could reach 28C, and temperatures are likely to be between 22C and 28C across western and central areas.

Those in higher altitude regions of the south and those along the north coast should be the only people needing their rain jackets as this part of the country could see scattered showers and clouds, according to DWD.

Wednesday is the day to plan a lake trip as this is likely to be the hottest day of the week. 

Most parts of the country will stay sunny and dry throughout the day and people can expect summery temperatures of between 24C and 30C.

For those on the north coast, it’s likely to be a little chillier, with temperatures of around 15C and partly overcast skies.

Thursday and Friday are likely to bring with them cooler temperatures, with the hot spell giving way to scattered showers and clouds in many regions over the weekend.

On Saturday, southern regions will see highs up of up to 23C while the northern regions will slip down to 18C during the day.

But anyone planning to be out and about on Saturday evening in the south should bring a warm jacket as the mercury could drop as low as 4C. 

Sunny weather Standbad Lübars

A woman enjoys the warm weather at Standbad Lübars in Berlin. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Britta Pedersen

Northern regions ‘too dry’ 

Though most people have been thrilled to see a warm burst of sunshine in the middle of spring, climate experts have been voicing concern about the uneven rainfall across the country.

In an analysis published on the DWD website, the meteorologists claimed that the northern and eastern parts of Germany have been “clearly too dry” in the past weeks.

“A first glance at the current map already reveals that the regional differences of April have continued in May,” they wrote. “In almost all regions of the northern half and in some parts of the centre, hardly more than 10 and in many places not even 5 litres of rain per square-metre fell in the first days of May.”

READ ALSO: EXPLAINED: How the climate crisis is hitting Europe hard

Though experts had predicted low rainfall, the first 10 days of May have been even drier than predicted.

The lack of rainfall has caused groundwater to dry up significantly, sparking fears of forest fires and drought over summer.

Though more rainfall could come at the end of May, the Weather Channel’s Jan Schenk believes the probability of an overly dry summer is now “very high”.

Schenk believes that predictions for rainfall could have overestimated the amount of precipitation by up to 50 litres per square metre in some areas. This is a reason for households to start saving water now, he told HNA