February 05, 2014 - 12:59 PM
THOMPSON-OKANAGAN — Windchill, below normal, frigid, finally sunny. Those are the terms being thrown around the region right now as we continue to live through another cold snap.
Across the region people were waking up to temperatures of -16 to -19 Celsius, plus a windchill. That windchill made it feel colder than -20 C at every weather reporting station, but Vernon clocked in at the coldest with a -27 C reading.
An arctic air mass moved over the region late last week, bringing with it well below normal temperatures but by late next week we could be seeing above normal temperatures, according to Doug Lundquist of Environment Canada.
“What we're under is an arctic ridge of high pressure,” Lundquist explains. “We're cold... close to record breaking but not quite.”
Though highs are still expected to be well below normal through the weekend but by tomorrow the coldest temperatures should be behind us. By early next week we will start to see a warming trend, though that could bring some snow as we transition to the above normal temperatures.
“By mid-week we could be above average, and that usually means a bit of a headache though,” he says. “We'll probably have a snow event early next week.”
We will likely notice a big shift in the weather going forward, Lundquist says, especially coming on the heels of a big shift to cold weather following an above average January.
“We didn't have any arctic air in January.... Only one day below -10 C (in Kelowna) and it was the last day of the month, the first day of the cold snap,” he says. “February really is the time of year where we start to switch, but once we come out of it we'll feel a really big change. It's normally much sunnier in February, definitely an upswing in temperature.”
That upswing will start by Sunday when cloud cover takes over the southern part of the region and by Monday in Kamloops. Temperatures will reach between -3 C and -5 C by Monday and will continue to warm up throughout the week.
Temperatures are expected to reach up to -8 C in most of the region and -12 C in Kamloops. Normal temperatures at this time of year are 2 C as a high and -4 C or -5 C as a low. Record lows for today are -22.8 C in Kamloops (set in 1975), -26.7 C in Vernon (set in 1899), -23.9 C in Kelowna (set in 1907) and -20.1 C in Penticton (set in 1979.)
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