After months of what felt like never-ending winter, Spring has arrived with a bang this week.
Environment Canada meteorologist Armel Castellan says most of the province, including the Okanagan, Similkameen and Shuswap, can expect sunshine and above-average temperatures all week long.
“A ridge of high pressure is really going to dominate the week. It will build through to Thursday and the early part of the weekend,” explains Castellan.
“We are looking at a lot of sun and temperatures above seasonal.”
An average April in the Central Okanagan sees highs at about 17 C and lows of 3 C, whereas this week we can expect highs in the mid 20s and lows at 6 C.
“Most locations across the province have been below normal for the past couple months, ever since early February. Most of February and March was quite cold and a good chunk of April as well,” explains Castellan.
“We are now talking eight to 10 degrees above normal for this time of year. So we are going from below normal to well above normal for the span of a few days.
“It is going to feel positively warm and quite dry. No clouds in the forecast until Saturday afternoon.”
He says the ‘never-ending winter’ comments from residents in the region are fair given the stats.
“It has definitely been a delayed spring or a colder spring than normal, and we attribute that a lot to phenomena like the weak La Nina that we are just emerging out of now,” says Castellan.
“The temperatures just for April show this. The average is supposed to be 8.4 C and it has been about 7 C. So it is colder than normal.”
As for concerns this week’s heat will bring unwanted snowpack melt and a risk of flooding, Castellan says that will be dependant on an accompanying rain. Rain that is not currently in the forecast.
“The snowpack will start to ripen and get ready to melt and we will have to keep a close eye on the rain potential for the weekend, but until then people can appreciate the changing weather.”
While this hot weather will be a stark contrast to week’s past, Castellan says it is unlikely to break any records.
The hottest day this week is currently supposed to be Thursday, April 26. The record for April 26 in the Central Okanagan was set in 2004 at 26.5 C.
“You will be within a couple degrees of the hottest day every recorded on Thursday. Not quite record territory, but approaching it,” says Castellan.
“Still being six to 10 degrees above normal is quite significant, especially over a few days.”
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