Arctic blast to bring snow and ice as temperatures set to plummet
Temperatures are set to plunge by 11C and there could be snow in places as the first real signs of winter arrive this week, forecasters say.
Mild air will take daytime temperatures soaring to 16C today but it will be just 5C by Friday as Arctic winds bring freezing gales to the whole country.
"It is going to get a lot lot colder in the second half of the week," said Met Éireann's Jean Byrne.
"It will be very mild, warmer than normal, over the next couple of days but things will get progressively colder from Wednesday onwards, turning very cold, windy and showery."
Today will start misty and wet along the west coast, with the east faring best where temperatures could top 16C.
But it will get frostier from Wednesday, and things will get progressively worse as the week goes on - with snow on the hills, particularly in Leinster by Saturday.
There will be heavy showers on Thursday, some of them turning wintry on higher slopes, and Friday will be even colder with temperatures dropping to -3C, with more wintry showers and biting cold north-west winds of up to 60kmh.
Longer term forecasts show the cold spell continuing right into next week.