July 2009 – Cool, cloudy and wet

By some accounts, July 2009 will go down in the books as one of the cloudiest and rainiest summers in the region since 1985.  I remember that summer because we had just moved into a new home and I was doing a lot of indoor chores including painting that year.

Many also consider July as part of the “year without a summer”.  Although it was cool it was actually less than half a degree cooler in Greater Moncton compared to normal.

The first half of the month was exceptionally cool especially overnight lows with even a risk of frost issued on July 8th and 9th – unheard of for July.  Although frost was not recorded, it dipped to 5.3 C – not a record but very close to it.

The second half of the month was warmer including overnight lows but with no less rain especially on the 22nd, 24th and 31st.

JULY 2009 ALMANAC

Average HIGH  23.5 C

Average LOW  13.0 C

Average  18.3 C (0.3 C below normal)

Extreme LOW  5.3 C (on the 8th)

Extreme HIGH  30.5 C (on the 29th)

Rainfall  133.7 mm (about 30% above normal)

Record highs broken in BC

Vancouver's Kitsilano Beach on July 29.09

Vancouver's Kitsilano Beach on July 29.09

The incredible heat in British Columbia continues thanks to a strong ridge of high pressure, which has brought warm air from the south.

Vancouver hit an all-time high again today at 34.4 C after yesterday’s 33.8 C while Victoria broke a new high of 35.0 C yesterday.

Further inland, temperatures have been even hotter with Port Alberni on Vancouver Island at 40.0 C yesterday and 38.0 C at Abbotsford in the Fraser Valley.

The blazing heat is expected to continue for a few more days.

Moncton surpasses 30 C!

A Bermuda High off the East Coast

A Bermuda High off the East Coast

It has taken awhile, but the thermometer in Greater Moncton finally surpassed the 30 C threshold today settling at 30.5 C.

Technically we hit 30 C all the way back on May 21st when the temperature rose to 29.6 C (rounded up to 30).

The hotspot in New Brunswick was Kouchibouguac at 31.8 C.

Normally it would have happened weeks ago but we all know how unusual (ie. cloudy, cool and wet) the summer of ’09 has been so far.

We can thank the annual Bermuda High for the heat and humidity which has finally taken its typical place off the East Coast.

BC sizzles!

Typically the hottest Canadian weather of the summer occurs in the interior of British Columbia and this summer is no exception.

Lillooet has topped 40 C for several days now and hit 41.2 C (107 F) today!

Even the coast was hot with Vancouver hitting 31 C and Victoria reaching 33 C.

The heat is not helping firefighters who continue to battle forest fires throughout the province.

Forest fires near Kelowna,BC

Fires in West Kelowna, BC

Fires in West Kelowna, BC

Forest fires near Kelowna, BC were likely human-caused but investigators say they may have been set accidently.

More than 11,000 people have been forced from their homes due to the flames.

About 40 percent of the fires have been contained and so far only a handful of homes have been lost.

But hot weather (low 30’s C) and windy conditions are hampering firefighting efforts.

Where’s the heat?

It’s mid-July and the thermometer has failed to officially crack 30 C in Greater Moncton – in fact, it has barely cracked 25 C this summer – it has happened on only 11 days since April!

We’re not alone though… much of Southern Canada and the Northern USA have been experiencing the same type of cool, often dreary weather.

So where is the heat?  In the far north, places like Dawson City, Yukon which has already cracked 30 C and had 19 days above 25 C!

The polar jet stream is one of the factors in the cool equation – usually over Southern Canada, it has been much farther south this summer and the Bermuda High, typically off the East Coast, is much further east in the Atlantic this year. 

But Environment Canada models are showing normal or warmer-than-normal temperatures for most of the country from now until mid-August.

Deadly tornado strikes NW Ontario

Amateur image of tornado near Ear Falls, ON

Amateur image of tornado near Ear Falls, ON

A rare tornado ripped through a fishing resort near Ear Falls, Ontario last night killing three American men who were vacationing there.

The bodies were found in the water of Lac Seul at Fishermen’s Cove shortly after the storm passed through the area.

Three cabins ended up in the lake and five others at the resort were injured.

Environment Canada says the tornado was one of several severe thunderstorm cells across Northwestern Ontario yesterday.

Finally Heat!

After three weeks of cloudy, cool and rainy conditions, summer has finally arrived in Greater Moncton – today’s high was 29.4 C!

However, today’s high still falls short of the 29.6 C recorded on May 21st.

The hotspot in Canada today was actually Kouchibouguac at 31.3 C with Bathurst not far behind at 30.6 C (setting a new record high for the date).

Frost in July!

I can’t ever remember a “risk of frost” in July but one has been issued for much of the Maritimes tonight in low lying areas away from the coast.

Overnight, reports indicated frost occurred in low lying areas of Prince Edward Island, a weather rarity for July 8th.

Some residents say they had to scrap ice off windshields, while some monitoring stations had temperatures hovering close to 2.0 C.

The temperature dropped to an official 3.8 C early this morning at the Charlottetown airport, a record low temperature for the date.

Greater Moncton had a low of 5.3 C, the record low was 5.0 C.

UPDATE – On July 9th, Greater Moncton tied its record low of 5.6 C and light frost is reported on PEI for the first time in recorded weather history.

Weather rage!

Summer has yet to arrive in much of the East

Summer has yet to arrive in much of the East

There are different kinds of rage – air rage, car rage etc. but weather rage is taking hold among residents of Greater Moncton and Southeastern New Brunswick these days.

For about three weeks now, each day has consisted mainly of fog, cloud and intermittent rain showers – and it is really starting to get on everyone’s nerves.

Afterall, this is summer – the most treasured season of all in this country – and so far this year, temperatures have barely climbed above 25 C (only 9 times since April).

But finally, this wet, cool, northerly flow pattern is expected to move out this week making way for mainly sunny skies.  We can only hope!