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Handbook of Estonian Snow Cover

Eesti lumikatte teatmik

Compiled by: Heino Tooming, Jüri Kadaja
Edited by: Ain Kallis
Reviewer: Jaak Jaagus
Year of publication: 2006

Handbook was compiled at the Estonian Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (EMHI) and Estonian Research Institute of Agriculture (ERIA), using support of the Centre of Environmental Investments.

504 sheets, hardcover (book written in two languages: Estonian and English)

The handbook provides a review of the results and analysis of 40-year snow cover observations in Estonia.

Snow cover is an inseparable part of Estonian nature in winter. It integrates weather conditions during several months, and is therefore a good indicator of climate change.

Climatologists, biologists, agronomists, municipal bodies, architects, promoters of tourism, organizers of winter sports events, personnel of rescue and medical services – anyone interested in snow and the changes it undergoes in winter and early spring – may find this handbook useful.


  • Introduction
  • Snow and snow cover
    Snow cover formation. Physical properties of snow cover. Melting of snow.
  • Methods
    Snow cover duration. Surface albedo. Snow depth. Density of snow. Calculation of snow water equivalent.
  • Generalized results
    Snow cover duration and surface albedo in Estonia. Trends in snow cover duration and surface albedo. Snow depth. Trends in snow depth. Snow density. Snow water equivalent. Conclusions.
  • Relationships of snow cover in Estonian climate – relations from winter to spring.
    Introduction. Data. Snow cover and maximum ice extent in the Baltic Sea. Snow cover and air temperature. Sea ice extent and air temperature. Winter-spring temperature relations. Maximum ice extent in the Baltic Sea and surface albedo. Solar radiation and snow cover. Concluding remarks.
  • Regionalisation od Estonia based on snow cover regime.
    Introduction. Data and methods. Snow depth. Snow cover duration. Conclusions.
  • Distribution of maximum snow load in Estonian territory based on the time series of the period 1962-2002.
    Introduction. Methods. Determination of snow water equivalent by snow cover measurments in field course. Data. Interpolation of point data. Distribution of maximum snow load in Estonian territory.
  • Weather and skiing
  • Snow and roads
  • Snowload of streets in Tallinn