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Monthly review April 2023

The second spring month of April proved to be too cool in our region with below-average sunshine duration and precipitation in line with the long-term averages.
Compared to the climate reference period 1961-1990, the month was 0.4 degrees too cold, with an average temperature of 7.6 °C. In the long term, April has become warmer by an average of 2.0 degrees since 1961.

The sun shone for a total of 138 hours. This corresponds to a minus of about 8 hours. In the April months since 1961, the average sunshine duration in Dresden has increased significantly by 69 hours.

The sum of all individual precipitation measurements in April reached 48.6 mm in Coswig (53.0 mm in Dresden-Klotzsche). The monthly total at both measuring points thus corresponded almost exactly to the reference values for 1961-1990. We thus registered an averagely wet month. The annual precipitation balance so far in 2023 is thus still a plus of 30 mm in Coswig.
In the long term, precipitation in April has decreased considerably (by an average of 25 mm since 1961!).

Weather pattern:

Elongated trough weather systems dominated the weather pattern in Central Europe in April (Fig.1). This resulted in a constant inflow of quite cool air masses from the north, which made the month of April appear too cold not only here, but in all areas of Central Europe. The inflow of cold air quickly came under the influence of high pressure, so that heavy showers and thunderstorms could not

In the course of 12 April, a low-pressure area formed on the front of a broad high-altitude trough
over Western Europe over the western Mediterranean region and then moved northwards on a
classic Vb track over northern Italy and further east of the Alps to the Czech Republic. In large parts of Saxony, where it rained continuously for 24 hours with an intensity of 1 to 2 mm per hour, mostly more than 20 mm fell, in the Elbe Sandstone Mountains and in the Lusatian Mountains even more than 30 mm of precipitation. In the end, we owe the balanced precipitation balance of the month of April to this Vb low.


Fig.1: High-altitude weather map for 500 hPa from 14.04.2023. An elongated trough from Iceland to
the Mediterranean can be seen. On the eastern side of the trough, the Vb low Rudolf moved
northwards and led to heavy precipitation in eastern Saxony (source: Berlin weather map).

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