Snow Covers Helderberg Mountains

Snow covers Cape mountaintops

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Light snow has fallen on various mountain peaks, with motorists on the N2 near Garbouw treated to this white-capped view of Groenland. Photo: Steve Pike
Avery Carpenter
SNOW was spotted on Cape mountaintops yesterday, adding flurry to a bizarre month of weather for the country.
Snow fell on the Hottentots Holland, Groenland and Helderberg mountains and on Du Toits Peak.
Summer seemed buried under sheets of rain as Cape Times Discovery Big Walk participants braved the soggy streets. And the final day of the three-day annual Wine2Whales mountain bike race was cancelled owing to wet conditions.
While it has been cold in the Western Cape this month, the northern parts of South Africa have been experiencing a heatwave. SA Weather Service national forecaster and meteorologist Karl Loots said: “There is a huge contrast between the northern and southern parts of the country.”
The SA Weather Service defines a heatwave as a period of three days or more when the temperature is five degrees above the average maximum temperature for that time of year. In Pretoria, the temperature has been 34°C or higher for four days, five degrees above the average maximum of 29°C.
Conditions in the Western Cape are less readily defined. “The snow is strange,” said Loots. “But it is only occurring lightly and in high, concentrated mountain areas.”
SA Weather Service forecaster and meteorologist for Cape Town Henning Grobler said: “The snow on the mountaintops has happened before unseasonably and it will probably happen again. It will be partly cloudy the rest of the week and then it will clear up. Summer is right around the corner.”
But it dampened spirits at the Wine2Whales yesterday morning when riders were informed the day’s ride had been called off. The race would have seen riders tackle an 85km route from Grabouw to Hermanus.
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