Geographia Polonica (1997) vol. 70

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Thermal Differentiation of Winters in the Carpathian Mountains Altitudinal Profile during the Period 1961/62-1990/91

Katarzyna Piotrowicz

Geographia Polonica (1997) vol. 70, pp. 89-100

Abstract

The paper attempts an evaluation of winter thermal differentiation in the Carpathian altitudinal profile in relation to some external and internal factors of the montane climatic system. Mean monthly, mean daily and daily maximum air temperatures were taken, for three stations representing different altitudinal climatic zones, in the period 1961/62-1990/91. The variability of the dates of winter commencement and end, winter duration and thermal indices were analysed, as was the relation between the occurrence of frosty days and atmospheric circulation characteristics. The biggest decrease in the examined period was observed for the numbers of winter days and frosty days in Zakopane and Krakow, while at Kasprowy Wierch mountain the number of winter days increased slightly and the number of frosty days decreased. It was established that winter thermal conditions at Kasprowy Wierch depend above all on air circulation and advection conditions in the free atmosphere, while at the two other stations, located in urban areas, anthropogenic factors interfere with natural climate changes

Keywords: winter, air temperature, Carpathian Mountains, climatic vertical zones

Katarzyna Piotrowicz [k.piotrowicz@iphils.uj.edu.pl], Institute of Geography and Spatial Management, Jagiellonian University Grodzka 64, 31-044 Kraków, Poland