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Unusually warm weather not a figment of your imagination

Friday, February 26th, 2010 | 11:37 am

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Golfers were out under partly-cloudy skies as they got in some early-season rounds at the Michaelbrook Ranch course Tuesday. Mother Nature has been abnormally kind this winter. (Photo Chris Stanford)

By Joe Fries

This week’s cooler temperatures and snow flurries notwithstanding, the first part of winter has been nearly 3 C warmer than usual.

From the beginning of December through to the end of last week, the average temperature recorded by Environment Canada in Kelowna was -0.7 C, quite a bit warmer than the normal mark of -3.5 C, according to meteorologist Ross Klock.

Now, anyone who knows anything about weather knows there is nothing really abnormal about things being a bit colder or warmer than normal.

“The numbers aren’t so meaningful,” Klock agreed. “It’s the fact that it’s been warmer than normal.”

You can thank El Nino for what has been a pretty mild winter. Klock said his research shows forecasters elsewhere are calling for the El Nino effects to continue for the next few months.

The weather phenomenon is also responsible for a dryer-than-usual winter.

According to Klock, for the three months leading up to Feb. 19, precipitation in Kelowna usually measures about 27 millilitres. This winter, the figures is closer to 11 ml.

The meteorologist said the lack of precipitation could hit the Valley’s water sources hard, but that a deficit could be made up by particularly wet spring months.

Daytime highs are expected to pinball between 7 C and 8 C for the rest of the week.

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