Climate



The geographical location of the Piatra Craiului National Park places the territory in the temperate climate area, within the region of transition between the western continental and the excessive continental climates. Furthermore, the area is located in the mountain climate sector, the high mountains sector. Generally speaking, the massif’s climate is not too different from the other neighbouring mountains’ climate. However, the orientation, the altitude and the massif’s configuration have determined several particularities.

1. Temperature - The yearly temperature distribution inside the Piatra Craiului National Park is gradually decreasing according to the altitude (the higher the altitude the lower the temperature): Rucar (>7ºC), Zarnesti (5-7ºC), Podu Dambovitei (5-7ºC), Fundata (4-5ºC), Curmatura (4-5ºC), Piatra Mica (2-4ºC), Vf. Piscul Baciului (0-2ºC). The average number of summer days, with temperatures exceeding 25ºC decreases as it follows: Rucar 40-20, Zarnesti 40-20, Fundata 20-0, Piscul Baciului 0.

The continental character of the territory’s climate is determined by the variations of the average temperatures throughout the year, with a yearly range of 18,9oC (Fundata station) and 19,4oC (Predeal station).

2. Precipitations - The precipitations are highly influenced by the perpendicular orientation of the massif towards the West and North-West winds, thus acting like a shield against the hot air currents. The precipitations’ quantities rise according to the altitude; up to elevations of 1700-2000 m. Bellow these altitudes the precipitations are more and more scarce. The data recorded at several weather stations in the country shows the uneven distribution of the precipitations, which increase gradually according to the altitude, ranging from 900 - 1000 mm in the lower areas to 1300 mm, in the higher areas of the territory.

Besides the monthly and yearly precipitation quantities, it is important to know their distribution throughout the year, namely the frequency of the days with precipitations (over 0,1 mm), which is of 180 - 200 days, most of them occurring in the vegetation season (May - August when 47 - 52% of the entire year precipitations occur).

In addition, the prevalence of solid precipitations, as the altitude increases, leads to an increase of the snow layer and its duration (140 - 200 days).

The first snowfall is recorded at the middle of October (12 X) in the lower areas and even sooner at higher elevations, thus in the upper part of the Funduri pasture it occurs at the end of September (27 IX).

3. Wind - Taking into account the position and orientation of the Piatra Craiului massif, winds blow most frequently from the West and North - West. While on the Eastern side of the massif, snow tends to build up in the concave parts of the terrain, on the other hand, on the Western side, more exposed to the winds, the snow is often blown by the wind, more compact and laid in thinner layers.

The average calm frequency is 8-9%, slightly more in the lower areas of the territory (11% and the Fundata station), and less (6-7%) as we get closer to the ridge.

As for the average intensity (speed) of the wind, it increases with the altitude, ranging according to the wind direction. The average number of days with strong winds (V ?11m/sec) is 40, and of the days with storms (V ?16m/sec) is 8. The most dangerous months from this point of view are March - May.

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