This Week's Weather: Mostly Dry
The changeover from 2013 to 2014 is not expected to bring much change in the weather, which should continue to be only occasionally wet with temperatures floating near zero.
A high pressure zone to the south of Estonia is expected to keep things dry and clear for New Year's Eve fireworks, though the Meteorology and Hydrology Institute predicts winds gusting up to 50 kph inland and 65 kph on the coasts. Temperatures around the country should be 0 to +4 C during the day, but the southeastern half could see the mercury dip to as low as -3 C in some places overnight.
Some light rain and sleet could make an appearance very early on Wednesday, but overall the first day of the new year should be dry. Southeastern Estonia should have the nicest weather, with clear skies and temperatures around 0 C. Elsewhere cloud cover is expected to be widespread and temperatures a little warmer: 0 to +2 C. As a new, low-pressure system moves in after dark, temperatures should start to rise, reaching +6 C in some places.
A tiny bit of snow and sleet are in the cards for the western islands and coast on Thursday, where temperatures should be 0 to +2 C. Elsewhere should be cooler, in the -3 to 0 C range. The clouds are expected to reach the mainland by evening and could lead to some flurries. Nighttime temperatures are pegged at -3 to +2 C.
Additional low pressure moving into the eastern Baltic on Friday is expected to bring sleet and some rain to the western counties, and could translate into snow in eastern regions during the evening. The mercury during the day will likely read -1 to +4 C.
Old farmer's version of the forecast
The season's latest pig spleen reading was taken today in western Estonia, a region that could be seen as a kind of meteorological mean between central Estonia's more continental climate and the islands' often southern Sweden and Denmark-like conditions.
The pig's spleen read by weather sage Ilmar Tiismaa of Pärnu County, Postimees reported at 15:10, indicated that that the winter would remain warmer than average. Tiismaa did not elaborate on what particular characteristics he based the forecast on. An observer said the organ "glistened mutely."
Agrarian superstition experts say a warmer winter is typically followed by a cooler summer, according to the daily.
Tiismaa said on his farm, six of the last 20 Christmases had not been white, and 14 of them saw thaw temperatures.