Spotty snow today – when will it warm up?

  • Vancouver Island Inland Sections Forecast - No watches or warnings in effect.

    Forecast Issued 11:00 AM PDT Saturday 21 July 2018 - Saturday: Mainly sunny. High 27. UV index 8 or very high. Saturday night: Clear. Low 11. Sunday: Sunny. High 32. Humidex 34. UV index 8 or very high. Sunday night: Clear. Low 13. Monday: Sunny. High 34. Monday night: Clear. Low 14. Tuesday: Sunny. High 33. Tuesday night: Clear. Low 14. Wednesday: Sunny. High 32. Wednesday night: Clear. Low 14. Thursday: Sunny. High 28. Thursday night: Clear. Low 14. Friday: Sunny. High 27.

  • Current Conditions
    Temperature
    22.9° C
    1.2 ° C/hr
    Barometer
    102.07 kPa
    0.0
    Wind
    SW 1.7 km/h
    gusting 6.4 km/h
    Humidity
    46 %
    Rain Rate
    0.0 mm/hr
    Wind Chill
    22.9° C
    Heat Index
    22.9° C
    Dewpoint
    10.7° C
    UV
    5.9
    Solar
    860 W/m2
    Last Updated: 12:10:00 PDT
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  • Day Almanac
    Day's Rain
    0.0 mm
    Day ET
    0.0 mm mm
    Rain Storm
    NotAvailable mm
    Civil Rise
    04:56
    Moon Phase
    First quarter (70% full)
    Civil Set
    21:54
    Day Length
    13:25:39
    Day High
    22.9° C @ 12:08 Tdy.
    Day Low
    12.3° C @ 06:21 Tdy.
    Day High Rain Rate
    0.0mm/hr00:00
    Day High Barometer
    102.13 kPa @ 08:59 Tdy.
    Day Low Barometer
    101.95 kPa @ 03:14 Tdy.
    Day Low Windchill
    12.3° C @ 06:21 Tdy.
    Day High Heat Index
    22.9° C @ 12:08 Tdy.
    Day High Wind Gust
    S 5.2km/h @ 10:15 Tdy.
    Day High Solar Radiation
    863W/m2 @ 12:09 Tdy.
    Day High UV Index
    6.0 @ 12:09 Tdy.

That is the question. When will it warm up enough that there is no threat of snow?

Well, clearly this morning it’s not warm enough because it was snowing as I stepped out the door (and sticking to the sidewalk). This seems to be how we often get through these events in the Valley. Our geography locks in the cool air and our habit of getting strong precipitation gives us the opportunity to have more of that precipitation fall as snow as the heavy rate drags down the temperature.

What I think we might be missing this time around, is the heavy rate. The system as it looks on satellite and is forecast in the models is looking pretty timid.

Take this morning’s precipitation charts:

20131211-065933.jpg

Between 7-10AM it’s only showing at most 2mm of moisture at higher elevations around the region. This has caused and might cause more light snow to fall, but real accumulation seems unlikely, and once the sun rises it is unlikely to keep the temperature down much which might turn it to showers instead.

But don’t lose hope. Tomorrow morning looks a bit different.

20131211-070326.jpg

We see double or more (4-8mm) today’s precipitation amounts over 3 hour periods lasting through the day, especially in the early morning and early evening.

As long as we stay below 2°C through the day and especially evening tonight then the rainfall should be able to drag that temperature down and give us wet, and accumulating, snow.

So expect some flurries this morning, but nothing to worry about. And tomorrow morning, I expect wet snow at times, amounting to 5cm or more the further you are from the Inlet or higher up you are.

By Thursday evening it is much more likely that we will be overcome by the warm winds of the pacific and be near 5C. So any snow on the ground may not last the night. That will be the end of the cold weather for now. We should get more rain, and temperatures around 5C Saturday, Sunday, and Tuesday.

Still nearly two weeks until Christmas, a lot can change in that time. 🙂