FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — According to the latest posts from the airport weather station, 2016 is off to a very slow start in terms of local precipitation.
We are already more than half way through January and the station has recorded less than 20 per cent of both the snowfall and precipitation monthly averages.
The amounts through yesterday were posted as five centimetres and 4.2 millimetres, respectively, as compared to 32.7 and 25.4, the January norms.
The month-to-date totals are also lagging far behind those of last year, when the January norms were exceeded in the first two days of the month and the ten day totals were nearly 50 centimetres of snow and 50 millimetres of precipitation.
Environment Canada’s seven-day forecast is now predicting we could add to the current totals in three of the next four days with the chance of flurries today, Thursday, and Friday.
It’s also worth remembering that in this area rain is not out of the question at this time of year, and Wednesday will mark the 51st anniversary of the heaviest one day January rainfall recorded at the airport station.
It posted 8.1 millimetres on Jan. 20, 1965, at the end, of what truly could have been called a week long global warming period.
The high temperature reached 10.6 degrees on Jan. 15, and the eight day average, beginning on the Jan. 13, and ending on the Jan. 20, was seven degrees.
What was really remarkable about that January was the fact that the average high, for the 12 days prior to the warm spell was -28.6 — with seven consecutive days, beginning on the Jan. 2, when the high never reached -30, and hit -38.9 twice, the overnight low.
Believe or not, that was the high temperature in Fort St. John on Jan. 30, 1947 — when the airport station recorded its coldest ever reading, of -47.2, and the overnight lows were never better than -40 for four consecutive days.