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March in Finland was exceptionally sunny, scientists say

More snow is still on the way in April.

People enjoying a sunny day at an open air café by the Kaivopuisto shoreline in Helsinki on 20 March. Image: Jari Kovalainen / Yle

Finland saw far more hours of sunshine than usual for the month of March—with the exception of northern Lapland—according to the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI).

The last time Finland had this much sunshine in March was nearly a decade ago, in 2013.

High pressure typically brings clear skies, and this was also the case last month in Finland, according to Yle meteorologist Joonas Koskela.

April's forecast is, however, not looking as bright.

"Snow showers are still in store, which means less sunshine," he said.

Last month was also milder than average, with the mercury in most parts of the country climbing one to three degrees above 30-year averages.

Sunny conditions brought on by high pressure led the temperature in Hyvinkää to rise to 15.6 degrees Celsius on 20 March.

A winter blast at the end of the month, however, reversed temperatures as a storm blew across Finland. The FMI recorded the lowest temperature of the month, -30.6 degrees, in Utsjoki as March drew to a close on the 28th.

Sunny weather also meant the month was drier than usual, particularly in southwestern parts of the country. The municipality of Parainen saw just 1.2mm of precipitation during the entire month.