Why China’s Epic Midsummer Snow Freaked Out the CCP

Winter in Canada.

Canada invited the PLA to observe its winter military exercises and training. (Image: Evgeny_Borovskoi via Pixabay)

In June, the Chinese regime got scared of a rather unique weather phenomenon. At a time when China was in the midsummer season, midsummer snow started to fall in some places. Why would the CCP be afraid of snow? There is a rather surprising reason for this — a long-held local belief that snow in June is basically an indication of a bad regime. 

Midsummer snow is considered to be a bad omen in China

After people started posting online that it was snowing in summer, the CCP unleashed its “experts” who stated that what people thought was snow was actually “soft hail” called graupel, which only resembles snow. Graupel forms in summer when there is strong convection. When the fluid becomes hot, it can carry thermal energy as it travels away from the source. This type of heat transfer is what is known as convection.

Subscribe to our Newsletter!

Receive selected content straight into your inbox.

Graupel tends to be cooled water droplets that are opaque and easily crushed. While they are fragile enough to be easily crushable when touched, hail is the exact opposite – it is formed in hard, uniform layers and falls during thunderstorms. However, such classifications are only a modern concept. In ancient times, things like graupel would be considered snow. And many ancient books are pretty clear that snowfall and scorching heat are bad omens. It often indicates loss of control over the kingdom by the monarch, negligence of ministers, and not seeking blessings from God.

Midsummer snow in China is considered to be a bad omen.
Temperatures in Mohe can go below -50°C. ( (Image: via Pixabay)

During the first year of Emperor Guangxi’s rule (306 CE), there are records showing that it was snowing at a time when it shouldn’t have. In that year, the emperor died. Encountering snow in June was a specific warning that the ruling authorities had committed serious crimes against the people and had not upheld the idea of justice. Obviously, the CCP would not like such a belief to become widespread in the country since it would mean that public sentiment would turn against them in a grave manner. This is the reason why the Party hurriedly went about dismissing the June snow as nothing peculiar or important.

Winter in China

In China, the winter season is between December and February, with January being the coldest month. In fact, temperatures can fall to 0°C in two-thirds of China. The northern regions are colder than the south, with temperature gaps ranging up to 50°C. The chilly cold feeling lasts longer in the north than in the south. Daytime usually becomes shorter while the nighttime becomes longer in the north. In contrast, the southern regions do not experience such drastic changes between daytime and nighttime.

The Great Wall in winter.
The Great Wall of China is a good place to visit during wintertime. (Image: via Pixabay)

One of the coldest places in China during winter is Harbin City, also known as “Ice City.” The winters are known to be pretty long here, lasting well up to six months. The lowest recorded temperature at Harbin is around -38°C. The city of Mohe experiences freezing temperatures for up to 7 months every year, with temperatures even falling below -50°C. Only 90 days in a year tend to be free of frost.

A much-visited place during winter is Yanqing, which boasts a stunning snowy landscape during the season. Between January and February every year, Yanqing hosts the annual “Ice and Snow” festival. Another place to visit during winter is the Great Wall. Strolling along the wall is a rewarding experience that allows you to view vast, snow-covered landscapes.

Follow us on TwitterFacebook, or Pinterest

Recommended Stories

White radishes.

Foods to Keep Your Lungs Healthy in Winter

The novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), which originated in Wuhan, is spreading fast. Apart from preventive measures ...

A black hole consuming its companion star.

Black Holes Eat Stars in Variable Mood Lighting

When a black hole chews up a star, it produces visible light or X-rays, but ...

A black hole near a red giant star.

Scientists May Have Just Discovered a New Class of Black Holes

Black holes are an important part of how astrophysicists make sense of the universe — ...

A young Chinese girl wearing a mask.

Liberation From the Wuhan Epidemic

The Wuhan coronavirus epidemic in mainland China is spreading across the land at an alarming ...

A patient with caronavius.

China Coronavirus Could Trigger Pandemic: Harvard Epidemiologist

Dr. Eric Feigl-Ding, a Harvard epidemiologist and health economist, has warned that the Chinese coronavirus ...

Chinese wearing masks.

How Is the Coronavirus Spreading Across the Globe?

The first case of a novel strain of coronavirus has been confirmed in the United ...

Chiang Kai-shek.

How Formal Education in China Was Ruined by Communism

Before 1949, Chinese society, especially university education in China under the Republic of China, enjoyed ...

Dominic Barton.

Canada’s Ambassador to China Says Relations Chilled After Huawei Executive’s Arrest

Dominic Barton, Canada’s ambassador to China, recently testified before the special House of Commons committee ...

A young Chinese boy.

A Sordid Tale of Raising a Child in Communist China

Kirsty Needham is a journalist who works as the China correspondent for The Sydney Morning ...

Send this to a friend