Incredible Satellite Image Shows Iceland Completely Covered in Snow

December 2022 was the coldest December in Iceland since 1974, with an average temperature across the country of -4.0 degrees Celsius or 24.8 degrees Fahrenheit.

In addition to record freezing temperatures, heavy snowfall also affected the whole country, forcing many roads to be closed for extended periods of time.

A perfect depiction of just how snowy it got, the European Space Agency’s Copernicus Sentinel 3 satellite captured this rare, almost cloud-free, satellite image showing pretty much every inch of Iceland covered in snow on January 1st, 2023.

Photo credit: ESA & the EU’s Copernicus space program

The country had been just as snow covered the days prior, but heavy cloud cover didn’t allow for a similar shot to be captured until the first of January.

Record cold in Reykjavík

December has not been as cold in over 100 years in Reykjavík, but the last time it was this cold in the capital was in December 1916, according to the Icelandic Meteorological Office.

The coldest temperature in Reykjavík measured in Víðidalur Valley on December 29th, at -24.4 degrees Celsius or -11.92 degrees Fahrenheit.

The weather station there is relatively recent and has been there since December 2018. So it is likely that there has been more frost there before, but it simply has not been measured, according to meteorologist Trausti Jónsson.

“This is a very special situation in Víðidalur. This is what happens when the wind is very slow. It warmed up by 10 degrees in ten minutes, as the wind became slower,” says Trausti.

It’s safe to say that this winter has been very temperamental, as the average temperature across Iceland as a whole during November was the warmest on record since measurements began.

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