BRITS will soon be hit with fresh Arctic misery following a brief spell of mild weather this week – as low pressure brings snow, sleet and hail.
Temperatures will lift into double figures over the next couple of days as balmy breezes blow in from the south.
But experts warn it is a calm before the winter storm with bitter winds set to sweep the nation from Friday – and snow could hit next week.
Met Office spokesman Nicola Maxey said: "It's warming up slightly through to the weekend, with no risk of snow outside of the highlands in Scotland.
"A low pressure system is forming across the Atlantic, which could bring with it wintry showers at the beginning of next week.
"You may see some of that rain turn to snow over the higher grounds, but where the weather will hit depends on how the system crosses the UK.
"The system will mean parts of the UK could see snow, sleet or hail."
Southern regions will hit 12C today and tomorrow with the north scraping double figures.
But wintry showers are forecast in Scotland and the north with even the chance of the south seeing the first flurry of the season.
The next cold snap could hold out for much longer with bitter conditions possible into the start of December, forecasters warn.
Forecaster Helen Chivers said: “It will be chilly in the north over the next few days while across the south it will be cloudy and milder.
“We could see 12C or 13C on Wednesday and Thursday in any brightness with 10C (50F) possible in northern regions.
“It will start to turn colder again in Scotland from Thursday before Polar Maritime air moves across the country through the end of the week.
“There are signs that we could possibly end up with a slightly longer and colder spell of weather but this depends on a low-pressure system moving past the UK on Sunday, we have to see the track it takes and how it affects the cold air over Britain.”
Chances are increasing for the odd wintry shower to fall across high ground in the south at the start of next week, she added.
She said: “There remains a small chance of some persistent rain and perhaps hill snow across some southern and southwestern parts early next week.
“Again it will depend on this low-pressure system and how it behaves.
“Thereafter, we are likely to see a blocked pattern becoming established, with a greater chance of drier, colder and brighter weather for most.”