Climate of Estonia
Estonia lies in the northern part of the temperate climate zone and in the transition zone between maritime and continental climate. Because Estonia (and all of Northern Europe) is continuously warmed by maritime air influenced by the heat content of the northern Atlantic Ocean, it has a milder climate despite its northern latitude. The Baltic Sea causes differences between the climate of coastal and inland areas. Estonia has four seasons of near-equal length. Average temperatures range from 16.3 °C (61.3 °F) on the Baltic islands to 18.1 °C (64.6 °F) inland in July, the warmest month, and from −3.5 °C (25.7 °F) on the Baltic islands to −7.6 °C (18.3 °F) inland in February, the coldest month.
The average annual temperature in Estonia is 5.2 °C (41.4 °F) . The average temperature in February, the coldest month of the year, is −5.7 °C (21.7 °F). The average temperature in July, which is considered the warmest month of the year, is 16.4 °C (61.5 °F). The climate is also influenced by the Atlantic Ocean, the North-Atlantic Stream and the Icelandic Minimum, which is an area known for the formation of cyclones and where the average air pressure is lower than in neighbouring areas. Estonia is located in a humid zone in which the amount of precipitation is greater than total evaporation. The average precipitation in 1961–1990 ranged from 535 to 727 millimeters (21.1 to 28.6 in) per year and was heaviest in late summer. There were between 102 and 127 rainy days a year, and average precipitation was most plentiful on the western slopes of the Sakala and Haanja Uplands. Snow cover, which is deepest in the south-eastern part of Estonia, usually lasts from mid-December to late March.
Spring is usually dry and mild. It can still snow in April and May. May is the warmest month in spring when first heat waves arrives and the temperatures can reach 20-30°C. Thunder season starts in April.
Summers are mild warmest in south and east Estonia, colder on the islands. Some days temperatures can reach up 30-35°C, but usually its near 20°C. Warmest month is July, but the maximum air temperature record is recorded in August 35,6°C (some sources says its 38,0°C, but it is not officially recognized). Many days ends with thunderstorms in the afternoon.
Autumn is wet and windy. First half of September can be warm. Many cyclones cross Scandinavia and brings strong storms and rains to Estonia. Some storms can cause coastal flooding and winds over 30 m/s. First snow comes in late October and November.
It is coldest in East of Estonia and warmest on the coastal areas. Coldest month is January and February (some nights low can be -35°C). Record low is -43,5°C. Cyclones brings snowstorms. Some times sea effect affects Estonia, bringing more snow.
Strongest wind was in 1969 in Ruhnu, 48 m/s.