As anyone who has been outside in the last two weeks knows, the weather has been unseasonably cold lately. Warmer weather is on the way; likely things will be looking up by the weekend.
Doug Lundquist, warning preparedness meteorologist for Environment Canada, said the whole pattern is quickly moving for another change, and expects that by the weekend the region should be seeing daytime high temperatures getting closer to a normal seasonal high of around 15 degrees.
The weather took a downturn soon after the unseasonably warm Easter weekend. A high pressure front descended upon B.C. from Alaska and drove the temperature down into the cold snap we’ve been seeing.
Lundquist estimates that by this weekend, temperatures could reach a high of 15 on Saturday and 14 on Sunday.
“It’s the nature of weather; we have ups and downs over time,” he explained. “What happened is right after that really strong high pressure on Easter, we had a flow come more out of Alaska, so it changed from this warm ridge of high pressure bringing in warm air from the southwest, to flow coming off Alaska, bringing freezing air from Alaska over the Pacific and then down over B.C.”
The last 30 days have been 0.7 degrees below average and the last 90 days have been 0.2 degrees above average.
“What’s happening is not outside of what could happen for this time of year (for the Kootenay region),” Lundquist said. “I wouldn’t want to talk about the prairies, because I think they’ve had it a long time, but for us here in B.C. it’s been up and down.”
He said though the weather will be looking up by the end of the week, residents should be wary.
“It’s definitely not tire-off time if you’re planning on travelling, especially if you’re travelling through the passes,” Lundquist said, adding that even a trip to Kimberley could warrant keeping the winters on. “On the valley bottom it melts fairly quickly. You wouldn’t have to go too high and it could be an issue.”
He said the pattern is definitely closer to the end.
“It’s not entirely impossible that we may see some record lows,” he said.
On the long-range forecast, Lundquist said there is a high probability that the temperature will once again be above average – in the high teens.
“But to look beyond a week in this kind of weather pattern, the reliability of the forecast goes down,” he said.
For up-to-date forecast, go to www.weatheroffice.gc.ca.