Sunday 1 January 2012

It's been a wet year!

An automatic weather station was installed at Islay Airport in September 2001 and so, in 2011, a 10-year run of data was completed.
The rainfall figures are available online (e.g. and and I've been looking at these for the last 10 years, as set out in the table.

As can be seen, 2011 was the wettest year of the decade, by some distance, boosted by two very wet months (October - 247 mm, c.10 inches, and December - 222 mm, c.9 inches). December was particularly unusual as there was no really wet day (i.e. 25 mm, c.1 inch), but again there wasn't a single day without at least some rain (0.5 mm or more) which again (believe it or not!) is a rare occurrence - there were 3 days without rain in October.
Although local comment suggests Islay may be getting wetter, a run of 10 years is too short to be able to detect trends. And anyway, who now recalls that 2010 was the second driest year of the decade.
All one can really say is that, if you like weather in all its great variety, as I do, then Islay is the place to be - it definitely gets lots and lots.
And a Happy New Year to all our blog readers, whether it be a wet one or a dry one!


  1. There's a bright side to everything Malcolm , just think of all the Whisky that will come from that Rain !
    Happy New Year to all at the INHT !

  2. Good point Gordon - and a Happy New year to you too!!

  3. Just putting this in context - I know you think it is wet on Islay, but think of us poor souls In Rochdale Lancashire (large town, population approx 100,000) - our average annual rainfall in the same period was 1,327mm. And I'm sure we get less sunshine than Islay as well!