Baikal World - information about climate of lake Baikal and Baikal region
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Lake Baikal Climate
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Explanation of the local terms and geographical names at lake Baikal
General Info:

climate of lake Baikal - Olkhon Island As other natural phenomena on Lake Baikal, the weather here has a range of peculiarities that one can hardly call comfortable. The main feature of the Baikal weather is its changeability and contrast created by the combination of orographic, hydrological, atmospheric characteristics and topography of the basin. The lake being located in the centre of Eastern Siberia with its continental climate characterized by sharp contrasts between summer and winter temperatures,
has some signs of a maritime climate. Seasonal temperature variations of this climate are smoothed over. Thus, there is a comparatively mild winter and cool summer. The difference between the Baikal climate and the climate of Eastern Siberia becomes quite obvious when for instance, comparing the temperatures in Irkutsk and on the lake. Though the distance between them is only 70 km, in December, while it is - 25-30 C in Irkutsk, it is only -15-20 C in Listvenichnyi Bay. But in July, when it is +25 + 30C in Irkutsk, it is only +15 +20 C ashore Baikal.

Average annual air temperature:
- Southern part -0.7C
- Central part -1.6C
- Northern part -3.6C
- Average annual air temperature in Peschanaya (Sandy) Bay (the warmest place in East Siberia) +0.4C

Average air temperature above the open surface of Baikal:
- winter -25C
- summer +17C

climate Baikal
climate of lake Baikal - The shore of Brown Bears
Though the annual range of temperature on the lake is not so wide and there are only a few hot summer days, one cannot complain of the shortage of sunshine. The annual sunshine exceeds 2 300 hours which is more than in Mineralnye Vody (the Caucasus) where it is estimated at 2000 hours.

By rights, Lake Baikal can be called a sunny region. The sun shines brightly above the lake till late autumn.

A comparatively mild winter, cool summer and abundance of sunny days are true merits of the Baikal climate considered in view of the average annual temperature and hours of sunshine. One should also bear in mind a singular characteristic of the Baikal weather - its changeability. Lake Baikal combines climatic features of the Crimea and the Okhotsky Sea coast (Far East). As the Baikal climatologist N.P. Ladyeishchikov emphasizes, even neighbouring points may differ in weather as much as if they were separated by hundreds of kilometers.

Duration of sun radiance:
In northern part of Baikal = 1900 - 2200 h/year
In southern and central parts of the lake = 2000-2400 h/year

To compare:
The Riga sea coast = 1839 h/year
Abastumani, the Caucas = 1994 h/year

Direct sun radiation inflow:
- in summer up to 9.9 kcal/cm2 per month
- during a year up to 60 kcal/cm2
- central part of the western shore and southern Baikal per year up to 110 kcal/cm2

Evaporation heat expenditure (different parts of the lake) from 30% to 70%

Aridity index (by M.I.Budyko):
Central Baikal (corresponds to steppes of a temperate zone) = 1.5 - 2.5
Eastern shore (surplus humidification) = 1.0
for dry coastal steppes and at the bottom of the basins = 3.0
Duration of the periods of maximum / minimum atmospheric pressure = 4-5 months
Duration of the cold season on Baikal - up to 7 months
Amount of atmospheric moisture flying over the basin - up to 100 km3
Moisture evaporation = 19.1 km3
Amount of precipitation moisture = 12.8 km3
Average annual drainage from the Baikal watershed area = 12 mm (61,1 km3)
Moisture cycle coefficient (by Drozdov) = 1.15; it means that 15% of all precipitation is formed of local evaporated moisture (for European territory this coefficient is 0.1)

The lapse rate of air temperature on Baikal's slopes:
- summer = -2C for 100 m in height
- winter = +0.26 - 0.81C for 100 m in height

Annual air temperature amplitudes on the islands and shore = 50-70C
on mountain ridges = to 100C

Climatic circles: 55-60 years; 150-180 years; 1750-1880 years
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