Heat Wave Hits Iceland, New Records Set

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Heat Wave Hits Iceland, New Records Set

Temperatures rose to 26.2°C in Reykjavík yesterday, which is an all-time record for Iceland’s capital. It has never been as warm in Reykjavík since temperatures were first registered 150 years ago. Other heat records were also broken yesterday.

In Thingvellir National Park in southwest Iceland temperatures went up to 29.7°C, which is also a new record. The last record was set in 2004 with 29°C.

“It may be the last summer where I can enjoy such blissfulness so I couldn’t be happier,” Lára Gunnarsdóttir, 92, told Fréttabladid while basking in the sun at Thingvellir yesterday.

Thingvellir enjoyed the warmest weather in Iceland yesterday, although heat records were broken in other parts of the country as well.

The Westman Islands saw a new record with 21.6°C, as did Patreksfjördur in the West Fjords were the temperatures rose to 24.9°C. In general, south and west Iceland enjoyed the highest temperatures yesterday.

Iceland’s all-time heat record was set on June 22, 1939 in Berufjördur in the East Fjords where the temperature went up to 30.5°C.

According to meteorologist Einar Sveinbjörnsson at the Icelandic Meteorological Office, yesterday’s heat wave was caused by interplay of warm air currents and clear skies.

Sveinbjörnsson said the heat record set in Reykjavík yesterday was of great significance. The previous record was 24.8°C.

Local residents used the opportunity to tan at swimming pools around the city and at the thermal beach in Nauthólsvík where a traffic jam was created because of all the eager sunbathers.

The next few days will not be as warm because it will be a bit cloudier, Sveinbjörnsson predicted, but the weather will remain mild for next weekend, Iceland’s annual outdoor Merchants’ Weekend festival.

“But after next weekend it will turn colder again with wind from the north,” Sveinbjörnsson said.