Snow likely in mountains today as cold air mass blasts Taiwan

Cold, wet weekend ahead in Taiwan as cold air mass combines with northeast monsoon, snow possible Fri., Sat.

Snow on Hehuanshan.

Snow on Hehuanshan. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A combination of a northeast monsoon and a continental cold air mass will bring cold and wet weather to Taiwan today (Dec. 6), with snow likely in the mountains today and Saturday (Dec. 7).

A northeast monsoon combined with moisture from a southern cloud system brought cold, wet weather to Taiwan on Thursday (Dec. 5), with the lowest temperature recorded that day by ground weather monitoring stations being 11.8 degrees Celsius in Hsinchu County's Baoshan Township. According to the Central Weather Bureau (CWB), a continental cold air mass has blown into the country from the north.

As the northeast monsoon pounds Taiwan today, the CWB has issued an extremely heavy rain advisory for New Taipei City, Keelung City, and Yilan County, and a torrential rain advisory for Taipei City. The weather bureau has also issued a heavy rain advisory for Taoyuan City, Hsinchu County, Hsinchu City, and Miaoli County.

This cold air mass will bring chilly, dry weather to the country. Over the weekend, northern Taiwan will continue to see cloudy skies and low temperatures, while the southern part of the island will be slightly warmer with sunny skies during the day.

CWB forecaster Hsu Chung-yi (徐仲毅) said that the northeastern monsoon and southern cloud system will continue to bring wet and cold weather to Taiwan today. The temperature in western Taiwan will range between 14 and 16 degrees, and eastern Taiwan will reach 18 degrees, with open coastal and mountainous areas seeing even lower temperatures.

Hsu said the cold air mass will cause a different weather pattern than that of the past couple days because it contains less moisture. Over the weekend, temperatures in southern Taiwan will rise during the day, with large temperature fluctuations between night and day, while northern Taiwan will see colder temperatures and less variability in daytime highs and nighttime lows.

As for the chance of snow, Hsu said that there needs to be the right combination of low temperatures and moisture for it to occur. Hsu predicted that the probability of snowfall in mountains with elevations above 3,000 meters is higher today and that there is also a chance of snow on Saturday.