Warm November sees Icelandic snowplough workers laying turf instead

Iceland is experiencing the closest it is possible to get to a November heatwave. Most of the country is without snow and some of this summer’s flowers are even holding their heads high once more.

In Akureyri, Iceland’s biggest town outside the capital area, snow lay thick on the ground in early October — and the unusually early snowfall led residents to assume they were in for a long, hard winter.

Now, some five weeks later, there is no more snow and temperatures are regularly topping 10°C. At this time last year Akureyri was under a thick blanket of snow and because autumn came so early this year, residents assumed they were in for more of the same, RUV reports.

November has, however, turned out to be very warm all over Iceland and any snowfall in lowland areas has melted almost as soon as it fell. Snow ploughing crews have therefore returned to summertime projects, including laying new turf.

“Last year around now we were swamped with ploughing work, we were working 16-hour days. Now we are trying to work in the limited daylight laying down turf and paving slabs. Still just summer work. These two years are clearly very dissimilar. So far at least,” says Eidur Jonsson, technical operator in Akureyri.