A little piece of American winter was captured last week and dragged, by jetstream, across the North Atlantic to western Europe. Spain, a mostly high altitude, desert country, is now largely white.

It is not true to say, as many believe, that what the US has today, Europe gets next week; but there is often an influence: weather systems usually travel slowly from west to east, the diluted cold air goes with the flow across the North Atlantic.

As a result, the United Kingdom is having its coldest nights of the winter, with minus 14 Celsius recorded in highland Scotland and minus 3 Celsius in St James’s Park, beside Buckingham Palace.

Northern Spain received its first snowfall of the season, with Asturias, Tarragona and the Basque country bearing the brunt of it. Snow ploughs have been kept busy, clearing streets and highways, but it wasn't enough to prevent traffic from being disrupted.

For some, the snow was a welcome break from the classroom: the stormy weather shut down schools, giving children some outdoor playtime. The high altitude town of Navacerrada, which serves a ski resort near Madrid, went sub-zero just before the weekend and is now very happy with 27cm of snow on the ground.

There is more snow to come, as the jet stream, the driving force of weather, is cradling a pool of cold air over Spain. There is even a snow warning out for the Mediterranean coast, around Malaga, not something the residents want to see very often!

Source: Al Jazeera