August 2017 Summary – RECORD BREAKER – And a 2 Word Winter Forecast!

August 2017 The Summary!

I’ve finally managed to catch up with all of the summaries! The June and July summaries are also up, with data only.  After what seemed like a pretty iffy start, the summer turned out to be long and hot and smokey. There were two major hot spells in August. We broke NINE Airport records (records there go to 1992) in August, and were it not for the smoke we would have broken more, and probably broken a few all-time daily records as well.

There is tons below the fold including all the data, river and drought conditions, snowpack conditions, and a very short and sweet WINTER forecast at the very end.

Dive in!

The averages for August were interesting.  They were perfectly normal for low temperatures; 10.9ºC on average.  But the high temperatures were very high, 29.8ºC which is almost four degrees (3.7) above normal.  The airport is also missing the first 3 days of data, but all three of those days were well above 30ºC in town. So it is safe to assume that the overall average with those 3 days would have been even hotter perhaps more than four degrees above normal.

The average overall was 20.4ºC more than 2ºC above normal.

The Airport was a little hotter than the City.

As I said in the opening, we set an incredible nine record highs at the Airport.  That means nearly 1/3 of all of the dates in August at the Airport since 1992 have records set in 2017.


Most Notable Event of August 2017

It is not temperature and rain related per se, but without a doubt, the most notable event of August 2017 was not one, but two, big smokey sky periods. More details below.

Enjoy the rest of the post!

Monthly Timelapse Video

You can check out the videos at:

Daily records set this month at the Airport* since 1995 and compared to other stations** for “All Time” since 1900.

NINE new short term high temp records. No All Time records (though close!) and no short term rain records.

*May have used backup Env Canada Data source at

**^^ Missing Data from Airport, Alberniweather broke existing Airport record temperature. Temperature at Alberniweather will be different. Usually Alberniweather underestimates temperatures in summer compared to Airport.

**Short Term means since 1995 at the new AVRA Airport.
Airport Records are compared to the 30+ year weather stations of record since 1900 (1895 for rain) at Beaver Creek, Port Alberni “City” and Robertson Creek.  Note that records pre 1950 may be more likely to over-estimate high temperatures.

AUGUST 2017  Minimum, Mean, and High Average Temp, Total Precipitation and Highest Wind


Alberniweather13.9º C, 20.5º C, 28.4º C0.0 mm
High Wind: SSE 45.1 kph on the 22nd.
Alberni Elem. School : 13.4º C, 20.3º C, 28.2° C2.5 mm
High Wind: SE 29kph on the 22nd
Maquinna Elem. School: 14.0ºC, 20.3ºC, 28.2ºC, 2.3 mm
High Wind: N and NE 26kph on the 12th and 22nd.
Nick’s Stati
on (Maquinna area): 13.9ºC, 20.1ºC, 27.6ºC, 1.8 mm
High Wind: SSE 42.5kph on the 23rd
Neptune Canada StationNA, NA, NA, NA
High Wind: NA
Overall City Average: 13.8º C, 20.3º C, 28.1º C 1.7 mm

Environment Canada Airport* : 10.9º C, 20.4º C29.8° C, 0.6 mm
High Wind: SE 33kph on the 29th

Normal 1981-2010 (Rbrstn Creek): 10.9º C 18.5º C 26.1° C 46.4 mm

*May have used backup Env Canada Data source at

Differences from Normal at Robertson Creek

+2.9° C, +1.8º C, +2.0º C, -44.7 mm (3.7% of normal)
Official Airport
-0.0° C, +1.9º C, +3.7º C, -45.8 mm (1.3% of normal)

Days of Precipitation for AUGUST 2017*

Amount : Normal Days : Days This Month
>= 0.2 mm: 7.8 :  1
>= 5 mm:  2.4 : 0
>= 10 mm: 1.3 : 0
>= 25 mm: 0.32 : 0

*May have used backup Env Canada Data source at

Comparison to recent months of AUGUST at Alberniweather


August 2016 was not as hot or as dry as this year, but this year is quite extreme. It is as close as we could get!


The biggest feature of August was probably the smoke!

Here’s the graph from It’s pretty clear where the smoke came in!

The first even in early August, which featured smoke from the BC Interior, was definitely the worse of the two.  We don’t even see these kinds of numbers very often during winter inversions.

The second event, which had smoke drifting up from Washington State, was much less severe and shorter but still notable and strong enough to get to the limit of the Ministry’s criteria for poor air quality 25ug/m3.

River and Drought Conditions

The BC River Forecast Centre reports that rivers are starting to recover from the summer drought on the mid Island and East side but have a ways to go on  the West Island.

See Real Time river flow data here.

The overall Drought Level picture shows the effect of the hot summer especially on the Interior, Nicola Valley, region, but West and East Vancouver Island both got to Level 3 “Very Dry” conditions.


Snowpack Situation

I am including the Snowpack because I didn’t get to do a full write for June and July.

For the South Island, it is notable that even though the snow pack peak higher than normal May, it melted very quickly on the South Island and ended up disappearing a couple weeks earlier than normal.

South Island/Jump Creek (near Nanaimo Lakes) elevation 1134m

The North Island was very similar, peaking above normal, and then dropping to nothing extremely quickly.

North Island/Wolf Creek (near Gold River) elevation 1422m.

SpotWX 16 day Outlook — A little Warmer but cloudy!

Getting into the forecasts, with Fall only 3 days away (the Equinox is September 22, 1:02 P.M. PDT!) it is definitely feeling like fall, but fear not! The 16 day model shows us warming back up into the weekend and then staying warm all through next week, especially the latter half of next week when the sun comes out!


El Niño/La Niña Discussion:

There is a La Niña Watch active.

The current discussion indicates “There is an increasing chance (~55-60%) of La Niña during the Northern Hemisphere fall and winter 2017-18.”.  We are currently in “Neutral” conditions, but the majority of the models seem to be pointing to a La Niña event.  We’ll see how that pans out.  It is not a strong prediction.

Three-Month N-America Forecasts 

North American Multi-Model Ensemble (NMME) 3-month Temperature, Precipitation and Sea Surface Temperature.

The Temperature anomaly for the next 3 months.

The October, November, and December temperature outlook looks pretty warm.  The West Coast is the closest to normal. The far north is extreme as is the MidWest US and Manitoba and Northern Ontario.

Last Month’s Three Month Forecast.


Precipitation Forecast.

Precipitation forecasts are a lot more interesting. The Pacific Northwest may be up for a wet fall.

Last Month’s Three Month Forecast.


Winter Forecast!


And last but not least, the Winter Forecast!

Two words:



Ya’ll can guess on what that might bring! 😀

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2 thoughts on “August 2017 Summary – RECORD BREAKER – And a 2 Word Winter Forecast!

  1. Thanks for doing all this analysis, Chris. Stephen and I really enjoy the graphs. Scarey stuff these record breaking temps. Here’s hoping your family and all the other families can be warm and dry this winter.

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