The weather on the Aneto, with its 3404 meters, is unpredictable, as befits the high mountain territories.
But knowing the weather conditions of one of the mythical peaks of the Pyrenees is key for people seeking to tread its summit. Or for the rescue teams that sometimes have to come to their aid.
All thanks to the station that Arantec installed a few years ago and the free access to information provided by the Government of Aragon.
2017, the year in which Arantec starts monitoring the weather on Aneto
More than 5 years have passed since in the summer of 2017 a helicopter left us on the north ridge of Aneto to install the current snow-meteorological station, at 3044 meters.
In fact, this site has long been used as a platform for collecting meteorological data for scientific purposes.
In fact, until then, the research staff of the Patronato del Monumento Natural Glaciares Pirenaicos was in charge of the deployment and maintenance of the measuring equipment.
But in 2017, the Patronato entrusted Arantec with the improvement of the station, its maintenance and the possibility of visualizing the data through the Smarty Planet web platform.
Since then, and thanks to the complete renovation of the sensors we made, this automatic nivometeorological station has been collecting information on the effects of climate change in this area of the Pyrenees, where wind gusts of 140 km/h and temperatures of -20 ºC have been recorded.
However, the consultation of these variables was not public.
Meteorology in the Aneto, within the reach of any person
And we know that the news has been received with great interest by the community of mountain enthusiasts, active tourism companies and lovers of meteorology and data.
After all, as our colleague Quique Vidal comments in a recent article interview granted to the radio station Ser Catalunya, the station satisfies several objectives (as to it being the highest altitude station on the peninsula, as stated in the audio, we have some doubts, all said and done):
- It collects environmental variables in such a hostile environment as the high mountain.
- It allows to study the influence of global warming on these fragile ecosystems.
- It provides periodic images of the Aneto glacier thanks to webcams.
- It provides real information to the rescue teams that have to operate in the area.
- It serves as a complement to warning campaigns when glacier ice conditions are unsafe.
What weather variables in the Aneto can you consult?
The Aneto snow-meteorological station collects information on:
- Snow thickness
- Wind speed and direction
- Solar radiation
- Benasque weather forecast (by proximity)
At the bottom of the main screen you also have an option to view all the graphs and download the information.
Pico Aneto, a colossus among the giants of the Maladeta massif
Although so far we have focused on describing the work done by Arantec in this special place, we believe it is fair to dedicate a few lines to Aneto, the queen summit of the Pyrenees.
With its 3404 meters, it is located in the Maladeta massif, the stage with the highest concentration of peaks above 3000 meters of the entire mountain range.
This area is protected by several figures:
- Posets-Maladeta Natural Park
- Natura 2000 Network, being catalogued as a Special Conservation Area (SAC) and Special Protection Area for Birds (SPA).
- Pyrenean Glaciers Natural Monument
What are the threats to this ecosystem? In addition to increasing tourism pressure, one of the most worrying phenomena is global warming. And one of the main effects of the temperature increase is the retreat of the glaciers This is a fact that videos such as “Al paso del hielo”, produced by the Instituto Pirenaico de Ecología IPE CSIC within the framework of the OPCC ADAPYR project, reflect with particular harshness.
With this project, Arantec once again demonstrates its ability to develop projects in hostile environments such as high mountains.
Installing a nivometeorological station at more than 3000 meters is a small step for us, but a big leap to better understand how our planet is changing.