TRADE WINDS IN THE CANARY ISLANDS
The Canary Islands have a magnificent climate. This is general knowledge.
However, one is surprised by their climatic conditions, attending their
geographic location. This archipelago is placed on the Northern
Hemisphere, between the temperate and the tropical zones. This fact has
a direct influence over their climate. Nevertheless, it calls the attention
that the Canary Islands, which geographically belong to Africa, have so
nice weather. This is possible because of the influence of two
meteorological phenomena: the trade winds and the Azores High.
This map shows how, clearly, the Canary Islands are
much closer to Africa than to Europe
Because of this location, the weather in the Canary
Islands is never cold. and the heat is never extreme. There are some
countries, such as Morocco, Sahara, Tunisia, etc., which are on the same
latitude than this archipelago, but their weather is much hotter. Why is
this happening? One of the fundamental facts that improve the climatic
conditions in the Canary Islands are the trade winds.
The trade winds are generated in both Polar Regions. These draughts
descend to the temperate regions. In the case of the Canary Islands, these
draughts are collected by the Azores High (as known as North Atlantic
High/Anticyclone), which is another main factor that provokes the
fantastic climate we have in this archipelago. But, what is exactly an
anticyclone? It is a mass of stable air, because of its high pressure. Its
presence hinders the draughts. But then, how do the trade winds make
their effect? They do it by skirting this mass of stability.
This map shows
the Azores High’s
zone of influence
over the Atlantic
The Azores High has an effect over another archipelago, called The Azores,
also placed in the Atlantic Ocean. This anticyclone affects the climate of
the Canary Islands in an indirect way, and it depends on where the high is
located at every time of the year.
During winter, the Azores High is placed very close to the Canary Islands.
Because of that, the stability is bigger in this area, and, therefore, the
influence of the trade winds is smaller. As a result, the cold air almost
does not affect this archipelago. This is one of the fundamental facts that
enables a nice weather during this season.
In these two maps you
can observe the
of the Azores High
between winter and
In summer, the anticyclone migrates and places over the Azores
archipelago. At that time, it is far from the Canary Islands, and, because of
that, the trade winds have a bigger influence. As a result, this cold air
reduces the temperature during this season, and, as a result, the summer
is not as hot as it might be expected for this latitude, and the climate is
In short, the climate of the Canary Islands is great, both during summer
and during winter. The two main factors that provoke this situation are
the trade winds and the Azores High. The combination of both allows that
the temperature stays relatively stable during the whole year: winter is
not very cold, and summer is not very hot as well. Because of their
geographic location and the climatic conditions, in the Canary Islands we
have a fantastic weather every day!
(Adapted from http://starexcursions.com/en/the-trade-winds/)
WHICH TWO METEOROLOGICAL
PHENOMENA DO INFLUENCE THE CANARY
WHICH COUNTRIES ARE IN THE SAME
LATITUDE AS THE CANARY ISLANDS?
WHERE ARE TRADE WINDS GENERATED?
WHAT IS AN ANTICYCLONE?
HOW DOES THE AZORE HIGH AFFECT THE
WEATHER IN THE CANARY ISLANDS IN
HOW IS THE WEATHER IN THE CANARY
ISLANDS GENERALLY SPEAKING?
- Which two meteorological phenomena do influence the Canary Islands?
The trade winds and the Azores High.
- Which countries are in the same latitude as The Canary Islands?
Morocco, Sahara and Tunisia.
- Where are trade winds generated? In both Polar Regions.
- What is an anticyclon? A mass of stable air because of its high pressure.
- How does the Azore High affect The Canary Islands weather in winter? It
is placed very closed to The Canary Islands and so, it makes the influence
of the trade winds smaller, and so, less cold air.
- How is the weather in The Canary Islands generally speaking? Winter is
not very cold and summer is not very hot.