By Humphrey Carter
HUNDREDS of people returned to the mountains for some fun in the sun of a very different kind yesterday - snow ball fights.
The Boxing Day snowfall was one of the heaviest Majorca has seen in recent years and until the snow machines and ploughs could get up into the Tramuntana many roads remained closed.

Yesterday, the Inca to Lluc road was open again although the Soller to Lluc road, between the Barques lookout and Coll de sa Batalla, was still closed last night. It is not expected to re-open until today because the snow and ice is preventing rescue services from clearing fallen trees from the road.

Fortunately, the snow was the cause of more enjoyment than problems. Only on Boxing Day did fire fighters have to pull two cars out a snowdrift near LLuc, with the emergency services more concerned about the gale force winds and the freezing temperatures. In the 24 hours between lunch time on Christmas day and mid-day yesterday, temperatures in the Balearics plummeted by an average of 6ºC to as low as below freezing in Alfabia in the north east of the island.

The North East has also been the wettest. Between 7am Sunday and 7am yesterday, 33.3 litres of rain fell per square metre in the Port of Pollensa, 15.5 in Palma and 15 litres in Lluc with most of that as snow.

The north west and east have been hit by the gales. Fire fighters and police cleared a number of fallen trees in and around Andraitx yesterday.
More snow is forecast in Majorca this afternoon, but the snow line will be much higher at around 800 metres as day time temperatures rise slightly.
For the rest of the week and New Year, the forecast is unsettled.
However, temperatures, in general are forecast to rise although the gale force winds will buffet the Balearics for the rest of the week making it feel slightly colder, especially over night.

The worst of this current polar front gripping the Balearics will move away tomorrow and Thursday but the showers will linger in the Balearics giving us a rather damp and windy New Year's Eve and start to the year.

For those planning on seeing in the New Year in their local square - wrap up warmly.


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