Cyclone to whip through weekend

Following a week of freezing temperatures, warmer air will begin to flow into the region Friday, bringing a thaw on Saturday before a cyclone arrives on Sunday with a mix of wet snow and rain.

Temperatures dipped well below zero overnight to Friday, reaching their lowest point in Rēzekne at -16 degrees Celsius. Coastal Vidzeme, the Riga region and western Kurzeme province stayed also below freezing overnight, however by Friday morning the thermometer in Liepāja had already reached +1 degrees.

Friday will be mostly overcast, with a mix of flurries, wet snow and rain starting in from the north. Winds from the west, northwest will gust between 9-14 meters per second, stronger still on the coasts at 15-17 meters per second.

Nighttime temperatures to Saturday will be below zero at around -3 degrees in inland Vidzeme and Latgale provinces, while reaching up to +3 degrees on the seacoast. During the day the mercury will rise to between 0 and +4 degrees. Winds Saturday will die down during the day, but pick up again overnight to Sunday, reaching gusts of 17 meters per second on the coasts, 9-14 meters per second inland.

Blizzard-like conditions will arrive overnight to Sunday throughout the land, with strongest snowfall predicted for western Kurzeme province. Northwest winds are expected to become stronger Sunday, reaching 20-22 meters per second on the shore, 12-17 meters per second in Kurzeme and 8-13 meters per second further inland.

The snow is forecast to continue Sunday, however with periods of sunshine breaking through the cloud cover occasionally, as the central and western regions of the country see the heaviest snowfall. Wind gusts from the north should stay strong from 12-17 meters per second, stronger still on the open beaches of Kurzeme, where it could get as strong as 25 meters per second. The winds will keep temperatures down to zero and below, to about -6 degrees.

The forecast for the next week calls for continued freezing temperatures in most of the country, but with intermittent thaws as the mercury hovers around the zero mark, both above and below it.

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