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Get ready for Pentecost: Denmark’s weekend weather forecast

As the long Pentecost weekend draws near, many Danes are hoping for favourable weather conditions to engage in outdoor pursuits. Here's what the meteorologists say.

The Pentecost weekend and Whit Monday promise delightful opportunities for leisurely walks. Photo by Marko Sabolić on Unsplash

If you were hoping to enjoy a nice walk or to spend the Pentecost weekend – or Whit Monday – outside, you’re in luck.

The next three days will be characterised by sunny weather and nice temperatures, according to Mette Zhang, the on-duty meteorologist at the Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI).

“This Friday, some will experience a lot of sunshine, while others not as much, and they may get some more clouds… During the course of the day, we expect the skies to clear up nicely so that everyone will at least get to see the sun,” Zhang told TV2 ØST.

While the last working day of the week will be full of sunshine, slightly cooler temperatures will prevail over the weekend, the meteorologist believes.

“The temperature might not be super high. It looks like it will be at 13C-18C, but on the West Coast, it will probably be a little cooler because of onshore winds,” she said.

Saturday forecast: Mostly sunny

Saturday looks to be the best day of the weekend in terms of weather, with lots of sunshine and temperatures of up to 20 degrees.

“It looks like it will be a nice sunny day with temperatures of up to 15C-20C. However, along the coast with onshore winds, it will probably be a little cooler,” Zhang said.

On Sunday, the sun will be less prominent, and people should be braced for cloud cover apart from in northern Denmark.

Opportunities for walks on Sunday

On Whit Sunday, sunny weather will grace the northern parts of the country, while the rest of the country will probably have to put up with a little cloud – and in some places, even a bit of rain.

“On Sunday, it looks like North Jutland has the best chance (for nice weather) from the morning, but you can also get out and have a nice walk either out in the forests or by the water during the day in the rest of the country,” Zhang said.

Sunshine and pleasant temperatures ranging from 13C to 18C are expected to return on Whit Monday, along with light to fresh winds from the north and northwest.

You can find the latest forecasts for your area on the webpage of the Danish Meteorological Institute.

As a lot of people use the Pentecost holidays for a cabin getaway or trip with family or friends, you should expect increased traffic on the roads, which could lead to congestion and queues in certain areas.

Therefore, it is advisable to consult the traffic forecast provided by the Danish Road Directorate to plan your travels accordingly.

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Danish state forecaster warns of ‘drought as bad as 2018’

Denmark's state weather forecaster DMI is reporting an extremely high risk of drought for this summer, likening conditions to 2018, when the country was hit by "the most severe drought in modern times".

Danish state forecaster warns of 'drought as bad as 2018'

In a new drought update on its website, the Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI) rated the risk of drought and 9 or 10 out of ten across Zealand, and between 7 and 10 for most of Jutland, one of the worst outlooks seen in recent decades. 

“In the 19 years that DMI has made drought calculations, we have only had such a high drought index this early in the year twice before, namely in 2008 and 2020,” Mikael Scharling, a climatologist at DMI, said in a press release. 

He said low rainfall in April and May meant that even if rainfall was normal throughout June, there was still a high risk of drought, with the water deficit in Denmark equivalent to about half the rain Denmark normally gets in June. 

“Such a deficiency is difficult to make up; even if the amount of precipitation for June were to normalise, there is a high probability that the drought index will remain red,” he said. 

The dry weather over the past few months is because of a high pressure zone that has been hanging over the British Isles, with a small spur in the form of a high pressure ridge over towards Denmark.

According to the forecasts, the high pressure area may not weaken until as late as August, bringing major challenges to Danish farmers. 

Denmark’s drought index has only been this high in two years since it was started, 2008 and 2020. Photo: DMI
In the summer of 2018, farmers’ crops withered and turned brown due to the lack of rainfall. 

“It is not yet a disaster for Danish agriculture, but it looks suspiciously like the drought in 2018. Things could go badly wrong, but we will only know when it has happened. It is already affecting the yield for farmers,” Jens Elbæk, head of the plants and environment department at SEGES Innovation, an independent, non-profit research and development organisation focused on agriculture. 

Scharling stressed in the press release that long-term forecasts were unpredictable, and that the high pressure zone could potentially break this month bringing more rain. 

“Forecasts that go so far into the future are, however, subject to a relatively large degree of uncertainty, so it can go the other way,” he said. 

But even if this does happen, some damage has already been done, he said. 

“The plants are vulnerable at the start of the growing season. And once the drought has established itself, evaporation will be high even if rainfall does occur during the summer.”