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Environment Canada provides long-term winter forecast for Vancouver

The last two Februarys have produced unseasonable amounts of snowfall.
Photo: Falling snow in forest / Shutterstock

After Vancouver received a staggering 34 cm of snowfall in five days last week, the rest of January is looking decidedly wet. In fact, the forecast is calling for rain every day for the rest of the month. 

With this in mind, Vancouverites are anxiously awaiting next month's forecast, as the last two Februarys have produced unseasonable amounts of snowfall. Last year, for example, Vancouver received 32.2 cm of snowfall in February; the 2019 weather event produced over triple the average for snowfall for the month in a mere two weeks.

Vancouver Is Awesome spoke to Matt MacDonald, Meteorologist, Environment Canada, who explained what we have to look forward to for the rest of the month and heading into February.

"The forecast is pretty discouraging. We'll see some little gaps here and there in between systems," he explains.

"We might actually have a Saturday afternoon dry spell, and Monday looks like our best opportunity for sunshine at the moment."

MacDonald adds that a southwesterly flow from the Pacific Ocean has brought mild air into the region, along with plenty of moisture. With this in mind, he notes that it has made things significantly warmer over the past few days.

"Daily lows are typically dip down to one degree overnight at this time of year. They've been around six degrees over the past couple of days."

MacDonald cautions, however, that the warm weather might not stick around. He notes that the department has some models indicating that February could see near normal temperatures while others are suggesting a cooler trend. In fact, he highlights Feb. 2 as a day that could be cooler. Nevertheless, he says that there isn't a clear signal for February. He underscores that there is no need to sound the alarm for a markedly cold and snowy February at this time.

The Weather Network is calling for cooler temperatures on Feb. 2. It also calls for a chance of snow.

Vancouver saw some snowflakes on Boxing Day, but none of the snow was really sticking to the ground at lower elevations in December. And while there wasn't any snowfall in the first week of the new year, very cold arctic air from the B.C. Interior began to make its way to the South Coast. Once it arrived, it provided the best snow-making conditions of the winter season thus far. 

In addition to ideal snow-making conditions, the cold arctic air brought some chilling lows. In fact, the City of Vancouver saw temperatures dip down to minus seven or lower, with the wind chill factor making temperatures feel decidedly frigid. 

And what day has the overall snowfall record?

December 29, 1996 saw an astounding 41 cm of snowfall in one day.