Yeah it’s pretty chilly in the mornings, but how cold can this place really get..?

As soon as temperatures dip below 40ºC, it’s not uncommon to see some veteran residents of the UAE strutting about in hoodies and faux-fur jackets.

But, thanks to some rugged geography in parts of the region, temperatures in select locations here do get objectively cold. Really objectively cold. And we’re not talking about the AC in your office. Although if you do suffer from that, know that we sympathise.

Take February 2017 for example when Jebel Jais received a, let’s avoid hyperbole, ‘reasonably thick’ blanket of snow. It’s not quite enough to head off-piste and rip a 1080 cross-rocket into fresh powder, no mile-high ice walls preventing wildling raiding parties, but more than enough to say, stage a village-strong snowball fight.

The same scenes were repeated in January 2020, but temperatures tumbled even further in January 2021, with the country reporting the coldest start to the year on record.

But what’s the coldest it’s ever been in the UAE?

The coldest temperature ever recorded in the UAE was just -2ºC, in that January last year — and perhaps most surprisingly, it was observed by meteorological equipment based in Raknah, Al Ain — which is not halfway up a mountain, this is a low-lying area.

That was the first time since records began, that temperatures in the UAE have breached the zero degrees barrier (yes we know, outside of your office) and points to more evidence of climate extremity.

January 2022 has so far been comparatively milder, but the heavy rain and storms that characterised much of the start of the year brought their own challenges.

What does the weather look like for the rest of this week?

The National Centre of Meteorology (NCM) forecast for the next week indicates that we’ll have more cloud cover to look forward to (and with it the possibility of cloud seeding).

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Conditions are expected to remain fair and mild, with gentle winds across much of the coastal region throughout the week. Morning fog is also likely in some areas, which means drivers should stay vigilant and take appropriate action to stay safe.

Abu Dhabi’s Integrated Transport Centre (ITC) recently shared a video with a few tips to help you stay safe on the roads with reduced visibility.

Images: Getty