Signal de Botrange
|Signal de Botrange|
The 6 m high tower at the Signal de Botrange
|Elevation||694 m (2,277 ft)|
|Listing||Country high point|
The Signal de Botrange is the highest point in Belgium, located in the High Fens (Hautes Fagnes in French, Hoge Venen in Dutch), at 694 metres (2,277 ft). It is the top of a broad plateau, and a road crosses the summit, passing an adjacent café. In 1923, the six-metre-high Baltia tower was built on the summit to allow visitors to reach an altitude of 700 m. A stone tower built in 1934 reaches 718 m. For several decades a meteorological station was installed at signal Botrange. Since 1999, it was replaced by an automatic station of the Royal Meteorological Institute of Belgium installed on Mount Rigi (scientific station of the High Fens - University of Liege) who is between the signal and the house Botrange Michel. It experiences stronger winds than at the centre of Belgium, for example. The average and extreme temperatures are usually lower than at any other place in Belgium: the minimum temperature recorded (-25.6 °C) does not, however, exceed the absolute record (-30.1 °C ), observed in the valley of the Lomme, at Rochefort during a temperature inversion phenomenon. An average of three months during the winter during which the average temperature remains below 0 °C. In comparison with the rest of the county, the rainfall is much higher: it reached an annual average of 1450 mm compared with 800 mm in Uccle. The rainfall is also much more common: there are over 200 days of precipitation per year (against just over 170 in Uccle). Maximum temperatures in summer exceeded only in exceptional heatwave threshold of 30 °C. The number of days of frost is over 130 days per year and the number of days of snowfall exceeds 35. The maximum thickness of snow was seen Feb. 9, 1953 with 115 cm of snow. Frost and an early snowfall can occur in late September, but that is exceptional. Late snow may sometimes occur until mid-May.
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