What does the temperature of the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Peru mean for winter in Kamloops?
Maybe a little, maybe a lot.
With this year being a La Niña year, Kamloops is set to encounter a colder than usual winter. But the real impact of the weather pattern, which occurs every few years, is tough to gauge.
“If those ocean temperatures are lower than average, that generally means it will be a La Niña pattern for B.C.,” said Bobby Sekhon, a warning preparedness meteorologist with Environment Canada.
Sekhon said the effects of such a pattern typically emerge in mid-to-late December.
But other factors, such as climate change and a generally warmer Pacific Ocean, can also affect seasonal temperatures.
With an overall colder winter forecast, Sekhon is fairly certain of one thing.
“It’s unlikely to be a bad ski year,” he told KTW.
Looking back on October, a month that started and ended on completely different notes, temperatures were colder than normal, but not by much.
A typical October carries an average temperature of 8.5 C for Kamloops.
Last month’s average temperature came in at 7.8 C.
The bigger story was the precipitation that came with such varied weather.
On average, an October in Kamloops will bring 19.4 millimetres of precipitation — falling as rain or the snowfall equivalent.
But last month saw 44.6 mm of precipitation, more than twice the average, with a fair bit of it falling as snow, especially as temperatures cooled toward the end of the month due to arctic-modified air, Sekhon said.
The immediate forecast in Kamloops calls for clearing on Wednesday following the snowfall of Monday night and Tuesday morning.
There are showers or flurries set to return as we near the weekend.