Tugs at Jones Marine stand out against a grey sky. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Sun poked through on only one day in December

Gloomy weather continued into January except for New Year’s Day

There was no repeat in December of the unusual amount of sunshine that occurred during November in the Chemainus Valley.

In fact, as Chemainus weather observer/recorder Chris Carss put it, “the blinds were drawn down tight for all except one day in December which had, at best, partly sunny conditions.

“With all the extra cloud came extra days with rain, 25 in all compared to the normal of 21 wet days. However, some of the precipitation came in dribs and drabs with just a trace of snow, so the total combined rainfall and snowfall for December fell just short of the 200 millimetre bench mark, a number that is usually easily surpassed during the last month of the year.”

December had another unusual feature, Carss noted.

“It started off at near normal temperature, which despite its seasonality, ended up being our coldest temperature reading on the first day of the month. After that, conditions gradually got milder until the temperature broke into the double digits on the very last day of the month.”

The mean maximum temperature for December was 7.0 Celsius, slightly above the 6.4 C normal. The mean minimum was 4.0 C compared to the normal of 2.4 C.

The extreme maximum of 11.0 C on Dec. 31 was counteracted by the extreme minimum of -2 C at the other end of the month on Dec. 1.

There was just that one day of mostly or partly sunny conditions. The normal is five days with sunshine.

Total rainfall for December was still below the normal of 226.9 mm at 193.5 mm. There’s also normally 19.4 centimetres of snow, but December 2019 had just a trace.

So far in January, it’s been more of December’s weather.

“January started off with some fleeting sunshine and mild temperatures, but then fell very quickly back into the familiar pattern of persistent but not overly heavy rainfall, and cooler more seasonal temperatures,” Carss pointed out.

”Colder drier conditions are expected to move into the Chemainus Valley by mid-month with sunshine returning closer to normal. Late January should bring the temperature back up to normal values, with a mix of rain, some snow, and a little bit of sunshine.”

On Thetis Island, statistics kept by resident Keith Rush at Foster Point Road revealed 137.4 mm of rain. Last December had a whopping 233.1 mm and the average for December there is 148.6 mm.

In November, the Thetis rainfall total was just 56.9 mm. The previous November of 2018 had 163.1 mm and the average for the month there is 166.2 mm.

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Chemainus weather observer Chris Carss. (Photo by Don Bodger)

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