Posted by: christinelaennec | December 27, 2010

Snowier Aberdeen

A month ago Aberdeen was in the news because we’d had so much snow, and were experiencing record low temperatures.  I posted some pictures here.  Since then, until today, we’ve had only a period of three days or so above freezing.  And the snow has fallen on many days.  I must say, although I lived in Connecticut for five years and Illinois for four years, and have spent time in Montreal and Vermont, this month of snow has been right up there in terms of my winter weather experiences!  The older folks are saying that the last time they saw such weather was the winter of 1947.  The experts say the last time there was such a cold December in Britain was 1890.

I’ve been doing a lot of walking, as usual with camera in hand, and wanted to share some photos from the past week with you.  On Monday the 20th, I took a long walk down into town from higher ground:

Walking down King's Gate, looking out to the North Sea. 20 December 2010.

The view across Union Terrace Gardens was particularly beautiful, I thought:

Looking across Union Terrace Gardens, 20 Dec. 2010

On my way home from town, I was very blessed to catch sight of a beautiful rainbow cloud!  I’ve seen this phenomenon once before in Aberdeen.  I believe it’s caused by ice crystals very high up in the sky:

Rainbow clouds over Aberdeen, 20 December 2010.

The next day was very, very cold indeed, and it snowed again.  On the 22nd, the last day of school, I went out to deliver Christmas cards and cookies to friends and neighbours.  It was about -6C (20F):

South Holburn Church at sunset, 22 December 2010.

That night it snowed again – a lot!  This was not in the weather forecast:

Snowing, again! Aberdeen, 22 December 2010.

We woke up to a bitterly cold day, and at least 5 inches of new snow.  I went for two walks that day.  In the morning, I went up to the pet shop to buy Tilly her Christmas toys.  It was very sparkly, very beautiful, and extremely cold.  About -12C (2F), I found out when I got home!  No wonder my toes had lost all feeling:


After the snow, a bitterly cold morning in Aberdeen. 23 December, 2010. I liked how the snow had stuck to the granite walls!

The pet shop was busy, and people were talking about the fact that a robin was living in the Spar shop next door.  I was so happy at least one songbird had survived the night – I worry a lot about the little birds in this weather.


The stuffed animals also seem a bit anxious:

A teddy bear surveys the Arctic landscape from an upper floor. Aberdeen, 23 December 2010.

The folks at Hammerton Store had used the piles of shovelled snow to make a great Snow Monster:

A snow monster in front of Hammerton Stores, Aberdeen, 23 December 2010.

Just before sunset, about 2:45, Michael and I walked down to see the River Dee.  I have never seen it so frozen.  Half of the river was iced over, although slowly pushing towards the sea in a long crackly creaking.  Further out, there was a slow-moving channel of water:

The River Dee about 3 p.m., 23 December 2010.

The sunset was gorgeous:

Sunset over the River Dee, 23 December 2010.

Christmas Eve was also very cold but not quite so bitter as the day before.  I went for another walk, to deliver last-minute presents.  The icicles were truly amazing:

Icicles on Christmas Eve 2010

And the sunset made the sky to the east a deep pink:

Aberdeen at sunset on Christmas Eve 2010. Looking down Queen Street towards Queen's Cross Church.

Christmas Day was cold and it snowed just a little bit in the morning.  The last snow photo I have for you is a snowman tealight holder, made by the Dafter:

A smiling snowman on Christmas Day. A Dafter creation.

Today it is beginning to thaw – and we are off to the panto!




  1. Hello Christine, thanks for once again beautiful pictures..But I can imagine the snow is too much.
    Hope you all had some wonderful Christmasdays, we had the first white Christmas since 1981….
    And thanks for always posting such lovely comments on my blog…

  2. There is a lot of reminiscing going on in the shire too – tales of people’s henhouses being swept into the river when the thaw came – eek!
    Lovely photos!

  3. Lovely, lovely, lovely!

    Snow muffles the noise and softens the rough edges. Until that yucky half-melted, muddy transition, it makes everything more beautiful.

    Blessed Christmas!

    – Kelly

  4. Dearest Christine,
    as always such beautiful photos mixed with you glorious style of brighten up my day.
    Have a lovely New Years eve and very best wishes for 2011.
    Love and hugs
    Heike xx

  5. Such wonderful photos – the beauty of winter makes up for the cold, don’t you think? Best wishes for the new year from Sweden!

  6. Thanks everyone for your kind comments and good wishes. Kelly I agree one of the nicest things about the snow is the soft silence. And Asplund, I completely agree that the beauty makes up for the cold. In the meantime, the snow has now disappeared! It’s nice to rediscover my garden again, although I haven’t inspected it too closely as I know there will be some casualties. I would wish you all a Happy New Year except that I was told by a Highlander that one must never do this until the bells have rung on midnight – so I will say “Bliadhna Mhath Uir, nuair a thig i,” Happy New Year when it comes!

  7. How lovely to see Aberdeen in the snow. We had a gloriously snowy winter in the last year of my undergraduate degree – King’s was so beautiful! Today we passed through Aberdeen on our way back to Edinburgh – unfortunately the snow had all gone.

  8. […] Image by Christine Laennec […]

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