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Okanagan snowpack hits zero; Thompson regions highest in province but still well below normal

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June 23, 2016 - 2:30 PM

THOMPSON-OKANAGAN - The snowpack in the Okanagan region is officially at zero, according to the latest snow survey and water supply bulletin from the B.C. River Forecast Centre.

While snow packs are low across the province, the latest measurements show the snow pack at zero per cent of normal for this time of year in the Okanagan, slightly higher at one per cent in the Similkameen region and five per cent in the Boundary region.

While still low, the North and South Thompson regions are the relative bright spots in an otherwise dismal snow pack survey.

North Thompson is reporting a snowpack of 33 per cent while the South Thompson is reporting the highest snow pack reading in the province at 43 per cent of normal for this time of year.

The spring freshet is essentially over, the centre reports, and is about three to four weeks ahead of normal with rivers across the Interior flowing at 25 to 75 per cent of normal, despite regular seasonal weather through May and early June.

Most rivers have peaked for the year and, barring extreme rainfall in the rest of June and early July, the centre is predicting the lowest streamflows between now and the end of July in advance of seasonal precipitation beginning in August.

The Climate Prediction Centre at the U.S. National Weather Service has lifted its El Nino advisory with surface water temperatures in the Pacific Ocean declining to neutral levels.

A La Nina watch is now in place with the prediction centre’s modelling showing conditions for the weather phenomena likely to develop by fall or early winter.

The latest snow survey is the last for this season although low stream advisories will be issued throughout the summer as necessary.

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