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West Kootenay December weather above seasonal normal temperature

The sunset over Rossland comes after a warmer than usual December. — City of Rossland Facebook photo

The month of December provided above seasonal normal temperature said the Southeast Fire Centre Weather Services.

“The large-scale pattern was initially dominated by a mild and dry area of high pressure that transitioned to a more active pattern with a series of Pacific frontal systems in a mild westerly flow,” the Southeast Fire Centre Weather Services said.

“A temperature of +6.4 set a new daily record maximum on (December)19th within the warm sector of a frontal wave, breaking a value of +6.1 set in 1966.”

The Southeast Fire Centre Weather Services said a more impressive value of  plus 9.0 degrees set the new daily record maximum on December 20th within the well-mixed post-frontal airmass (previous high for the day was  plus 6.9 set in 2004). 

“These mild temperatures coincided with a set of frontal waves that brought over one-third of the month's total rain (13.4mm of a total 37.0mm),” the Southeast Fire Centre Weather Services said.

“The record high temperature for the month, set in 1980, of 11.6 degrees still stands.”

The Southeast Fire Centre Weather Services said the melted water equivalent of snowfall totals is usually more than double what we get in the form of rain (64.8mm water equivalent of snow vs. 31.3mm rain). 

“This month, total rainfall and melted water equivalent of total snowfall were almost the same (38.6 snow vs. 37.0 rain),” the Southeast Fire Centre Weather Services said.

“The warmer and rainier than average weather is mainly a result of Arctic air never making it into the area this month.”

Environment Canada said mild temperatures are expected to continue for the next few days.