Holiday forecast: Mild, wet, slippery

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Norwegians could look forward to a White Christmas and New Year at higher elevations, but holiday forecasts called for mild temperatures with rain and sleet along much of the coast. Motorists were also being warned of extremely slippery roads, especially in the valleys of southern Norway.

Snow can be found at higher elevations all over Norway now, but coastal and lower-lying areas were told to expect mild temperatures and unstable weather during the Christmas and New Year holidays. PHOTO: Views and News

“The warnings apply to Østerdalen, Gudbrandsdalen, Telemark and some areas of Agder,” state meteorologist Siri Wiberg Horjen told newspaper Aftenposten.

Low pressure systems were moving in over southern Norway on Friday, with warmer temperatures and rain that can freeze on contact with the ground, Horjen said.

“In the valleys, we think the cold will linger, and in some areas east of the mountains (østafjells), temperatures can be down around minus-10,” she said. “Then the rain will freeze on the ground and result in very slippery roads.”

Wintry landscapes can be found in the mountains and even in the hills surround Oslo, but most towns and cities along the coast wouldn’t see much if any snow over the next few days. Most of the snow that fell during the night on Wednesday was melting away and the sun was expected to emerge during the few hours of daylight at this time of year.

Both eastern Norway (Østlandet) and Finnmark in the far north were expected to have fairly nice weather, while intermittent rain and sleet were predicted along the west coast, Trøndelag and the northern coast. It could clear during the weekend, but more unstable weather was forecast through the days leading up to New Year’s Eve (known as romjul in Norway).

State meteorologist Haakon Melhuus told news bureau NTB that storms may even set in from Monday, in Vestlandet, Trøndelag and Nordland. He said the outlook was so unstable, though, that it was difficult to make firm predictions.

Skiers would regardless need to head for the hills to find trails and slopes covered with snow.

Views and News from Norway/Nina Berglund

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