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February sees new record low temperatures

February in the West Kootenay was a little cooler and a little drier than normal.

According to monthly statistics provided by the Southeast Fire Centre’s weather office in Castlegar, we received less than half the usual amount of rain (12.8 mm versus 28.1 mm) but nearly 50 per cent more snow than usual (37.8 cm versus 25.7 cm leaving total precipitation 18 per cent below average.

The record highs for February are 83.6 mm of rain in 1983, 98 cm of snow in 1969, and 162.7 mm of combined precipitation in 1979. The record lows are 0.4 mm of rain in 1993, 0.4 mm cm of snow in 2010, and 8.4 mm of precipitation in 2005.

Last month’s mean temperature of minus-1.2 was a little over a degree cooler than the norm of minus-0.1.

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Two daily low temperature records were broken: one on the 24th, when it got down to minus-17 and one on the 27th, of minus-14.4.

The 24th was also the coldest day of the month, but fell short of the all-time February low temperature record of minus-21.5 set on Feb. 5, 2014.

The warmest temperature of the month was 8.2 on the 13th, while the record high of 14.3 was last tied on Feb. 28, 2010.

Forecaster Jesse Ellis noted rain was more common than snow during the first half of the month and a stretch of milder temperatures starting around the 3rd let the valley botttom snow melt off by mid-month.

But by the 25th, a “classic snow-making scenario” was in place that dumped 17 cm.

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