The last of three rounds of heavy rain was on the wane Wednesday evening, though flood warnings and watches remained in effect for many of the province's river basins. The upside was that several Interior communities broke heat records, but that was accompanied by very high freezing levels, and high to extreme avalanche danger on some ranges. More on the continuing heavy rain and avalanche threat, below.
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INTO THURSDAY: RAIN FINALLY ENDS, HEAT RECORDS SET
After several days of unrelenting rain, with only a few short-lived breaks, this current pulse of Pacific moisture, was finally winding down Wednesday evening, though it leaves behind numerous flood watches and warnings along many of B.C.'s river basins.
A peculiarity of this setup is that it brought an astounding surge of warmth to parts of the B.C. Interior, with some communities even cracking the 20-degree mark. Penticton's daytime high of 22.5°C was its warmest December 1st on record since 1941, and the warmest December temperature recorded in B.C.
The downside is that, in the mountains, the warmth manifested as very high freezing levels. Combined with the rains of the past few days, the result has been very high avalanche risk.
The province recorded its first avalanche fatality this past weekend. Avalanche Canada issued high to extreme avalanche danger ratings on Wednesday from the Coastal Range to the Rockies, with avalanche hazard expected to remain high into Thursday.
LOOKING AHEAD: CALMER CONDITIONS END THE WEEK BEFORE A SATURDAY SYSTEM
A cold front will push through the region overnight Wednesday into Thursday, providing southern B.C. a much-needed break from the relentless precipitation that’s hammered the region lately.
Temperatures will remain seasonal for much of Metro Vancouver on Thursday and Friday with intermittent periods of clouds and sun.
However, the avalanche danger will persist in mountainous areas through the end of the week, with many areas continuing to experience a high avalanche danger on Thursday.
B.C.’s next storm system will arrive on Saturday. This system looks much weaker than what the region has had to contend with for the past couple of weeks. Falling freezing levels will bring the chance for snow to lower elevations across the Lower Mainland.
Beyond, the active pattern continues through early December. Freezing levels will fall as colder air spreads into the region, which is great news for ski areas. In the long range, while confidence is low at the moment, there is the potential for low-elevation snow, including in the southern Interior.
Check back for the latest on the heavy rain and avalanche danger across British Columbia.