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Geography & Climate

by isleofman.com 22nd April 2022

Isle of Man - Geography and Climate

 

 

It is said that the Isle of Man is like Britain in minature, yet with a population density of just 316 people per square mile (125 people per square kilometre), there is certainly room to breathe and grow.

 

GEOGRAPHY

 

The island, which occupies a central position within both the Irish Sea and the British Isles, measures 33 miles (52 km) long and 13 miles (22 km) wide. Despite its comparatively small size, a broad range of scenery provides endless variation.

 

Hills stretch obliquely across the Island and just one mountain, Snaefell, stands at 2,036 feet (621 metres). Well defined valleys lie between, and around the Island's flat northern plain are long sandy beaches. These contrast markedly with the rocky cliffs and sheltered bays around the rest of the coastline, which is over 100 miles (160km) long.

 

Over two-thirds of the land mass is cultivated - principally the fertile northern and southern plains.

 

CLIMATE

 

The Island's climate is temperate and lacking in extremes, due to the influence of the surrounding Irish Sea.  In winter thunderstorms, snowfall and frost are infrequent, and even when snow does occur it rarely lies on the ground for more than a day or two.

 

February is normally the coldest month, with an average daily temperature of 4.9 C (41 F), and July and August are the warmest - with an average daily maximum temperature of around 18 C (63 F). In summer April, May and June are the driest months whilst May, June and July are the sunniest. 

 

Wind generally travels southwesterly, although the rugged topography means that local effects of shelter and exposure are very variable. Sea fog affects the south and east coast at times, especially in spring, but is less frequent on the west coast.

 

Rainfall and the frequency of hill fog both increase with altitude - the highest point of the Island (Snaefell at 2,036 ft) receives some two and a quarter times more rainfall than Ronaldsway on the southeast coast, where the annual average is 34 inches (863 mm).

 

Average Summer Stats

  • Temperature: mid 20°C (70°F) 
  • Rain: 60mm oper month (snow sometimes February/early March)
  • Sunny days, or at least those in which the sky is completely clear from dawn to dusk, are quite rare.

 

Average Winter Stats

  • Temperature: around 9°C (48°F)
  • Rain: 85mm oper month
  • The sky is often cloudy, and rainfall is frequent. Sometimes, intense Atlantic depressions can cause wind storms.

 

The thick sea fog that occasionally smothers the island's lowland areas is known as 'Manannan's Cloak', a reference to the island's ancient sea god swathing his kingdom in mist to protect it from unwanted visitors.

 

Night Sky

On a clear night, the number of visible stars which can be seen over the Island is astonishing as there is little light pollution out of the major towns.

Posted by Yabsta
22nd April 2022 11:28 pm.
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