While “I’m done with winter” is already becoming a common refrain among Shuswap residents, the recent snowfall hasn’t been record-breaking.
In fact, Doug Lundquist, a meteorologist with Environment Canada, said the 2019/2020 winter is nothing special.
“It is not a snowy winter,” said Lundquist, basing his findings on snowpack data recorded at a weather station in Silver Creek. Compared to 30 years of winter weather records, so far the Shuswap is experiencing its 12th wettest winter.
In terms of snowfall, the area received a total of 3.2 centimetres for the months of October and November 2019, while December brought 78 cm, the fifth-highest in three decades.
“Nothing seems unusual about this year to me,” Lundquist said, making one exception. Data shows recent weeks have been dry enough to compete with previous years for the driest start to winter.
The award for the most severe winter recorded by the Silver Creek station goes to the winter of 1996, with 337.2 cm recorded from October to May.
“I remember that winter, oh my gosh,” said Lundquist. “By this time in that year, we already had 232.7 [cm].”
Lundquist said the region will see more snowfall before the winter is over but doesn’t expect any records will be broken.