Gales will blow out - but we're still waiting for arrival of spring
GALE-force winds battered the country over the weekend and a Met Éireann-imposed orange weather warning remains in place today.
However, as we head into mid-March, there is hope that more settled conditions are on the horizon.
Forecasters confirmed that today would continue to be wet and windy, but that the rain would mostly clear into showers by the afternoon.
The weather warning, which remains in place until midnight, warns of winds reaching speeds of up to 80kph with gusts of up to 130kph.
The orange alert applies for Donegal, Galway, Leitrim, Mayo and Sligo, while a yellow alert has been issued for Dublin, Kildare, Longford, Louth, Wexford, Wicklow, Offaly, Westmeath, Meath, Cavan, Monaghan, Roscommon, Clare, Cork, Kerry, Limerick and Waterford.
The weather is expected to clear by late evening with drier spells.
Forecaster Joanna Donnelly said she expected the windy conditions to follow through today, but that the weather warning would not likely extend beyond that.
Tomorrow will be a dry and sunny day with some light breezes and temperatures ranging from 7C to 10C.
The night will start off cold with frost in places, but temperatures will increase overnight as southerly winds strengthen.
There will be plenty of opportunity for the mercury to get into double figures as the week goes on, however.
Despite rising temperatures by day, the nights will remain cold. Frost will be back on Wednesday night and a further bout of rain will be making its way in by Thursday.
Met Éireann said that there would be "significant rainfall spreading across the country" on Thursday which would be followed by cool and gusty westerly winds.
The forecaster said that current indications suggested that the weekend would be bright and sunny with some light breezes. Temperatures will reach about 9C by day.
The country is still waiting for spring to truly kick in, despite some mild and sunny conditions in patches over recent days. February was a chilly month when compared with last year - drier and cooler than the average.
According to Met Éireann, nearly all monthly rainfall totals were below average except for isolated stations in the west and south-west.
It was also the sunniest February in five years, as recorded by Met Éireann stations in Cork and Kerry.