Country Overview For Antarctica
The climate in Antarctica is typically severe low temperatures vary with latitude, elevation, and distance from the ocean; East Antarctica is colder than West Antarctica because of its higher elevation; Antarctic Peninsula has the most moderate climate; higher temperatures occur in January along the coast and average slightly below freezing. The terrain: about 98% thick continental ice sheet and 2% barren rock, with average elevations between 2,000 and 4,000 meters; mountain ranges up to nearly 5,000 meters; ice-free coastal areas include parts of southern Victoria Land, Wilkes Land, the Antarctic Peninsula area, and parts of Ross Island on McMurdo Sound; glaciers form ice shelves along about half of the coastline, and floating ice shelves constitute 11% of the area of the continent. For EKOFISK in January the daily average maximum temperatures is 7°C with the average minimum 5°C, while in June the average maximum is 13°C with a minimum of 11°C. The wettest month for EKOFISK is August with an average of 34.4mm of precipitation falling while the driest month is January with 0.0mm falling.
HISTORICAL MONTHLY AVERAGES FOR DECEMBER
The information presented below gives detailed historical monthly average weather conditions along with exceptional weather occurrences. To maintain relevance to current weather trends the displayed information has been calculated using data collected over the past two decades. The climate profile is taken from closest available data source to Rothera Point.
Throughout the month of December daytime temperatures will generally reach highs of around 4°C that's about 39°F. At night the average minimum temperature drops down to around -2°C, that's 29°F.
In recent times the highest recorded temperature in December has been 12°C that's 53°F, with the lowest recorded temperature -11°C, about 13°F.
The average daily relative humidity for December is around 72%.
The Heat Index is a measure of how hot it feels when relative humidity is added to actual air temperature. From this a comfort level is calculated providing categories on how heat conditions might adversely affect someone.
Comfort Levels: Given average maximum temperatures and humidity levels generally you should not anticipate any discomfort from heat (see heat index for more information).
The average monthly amount of precipitation has been recorded at around 28 mm, that's 1 inches. Throughout the month you can expect to see rain or drizzle falling on 2 days of the month, with snow falling on 9 days.
Estimated Hours of Sunshine per Day
We calculate sunshine hours per day using our past forecast data. For December expect the sun to shine for an average of 4 hours per day. This represents the average number of hours in the daytime that the sun is visible and not obscured by cloud e.g. the average number of hours the sun is actually out and shining. Note we calculate hours of sunshine per day using our past forecast data, not observation data, thus it is an estimate and not actual.
The average daily wind speed in December has been around 15 km/h, that’s the equivalent to about 9 mph, or 8 knots. In recent years the maximum sustained wind speed has reached 117 km/h, that’s the equivalent of around 72 mph, or 63 knots.
On average the month of December is affected by foggy conditions on less than 1 day.
SWIMMING AND WATER TEMPERATURE
The temperature of water an individual will feel comfortable in is very much personal preference. What feels unbearably cold to one person for a swim might be fine for another. We have created our own Swimming Water Temperature Index offering a guide to water temperature and comfort levels for swimming;
In December, for the nearest coastal location, the temperature of the sea averages around -1°C, that's 30° Fahrenheit. Our index indicates for swimming this is considered extremely cold. It’s possible you would need to clear surface ice to gain access to the water and unless suitably protected with insulated waterproof clothing hypothermia would very quickly occur.
YEARLY TRENDS: WEATHER AVERAGES & EXTREMES
The following charts show yearly weather trends with information on monthly weather averages and extremes.
The chart below plots the average high and low temperature for each month of the year. It also shows the maximum and minimum recorded temperatures.
The chart below plots the average monthly precipitation amount.
The chart below plots the average number of days in any month that you can expect to see rain falling.
The chart below plots the average number of days in any month that you can expect to see snow falling.
The chart below plots the average daily wind speed you can expect for any month. It also shows the maximum recorded sustained wind speed for each month.