Midwinter marks the shortest day of the year and in Ireland winter solstice is a welcome signal that the days will lengthen. While we generally have mild winters what some visitors find surprising is just how short are the days. Sunrise at winter solstice this year is 9am. If it is overcast the twilight draws down the curtain by 3:30pm. While we generally have mild, rainy weather at winter solstice and during the twelve days of Christmas there have been exceptions. The period over winter solstice right through the holidays in 2009 and 2010 had record breaking low temperature and wide spread snowfall.