Edmonton can't 'write the obituary' on summer just yet, senior climatologist says

Edmontonians who felt summer "came to an incredible halt" in August weren't wrong, says David Phillips, senior climatologist for Environment Canada.

But it's way too early to say summer is over.

"Don't write the obituary on summer," Phillips said on Tuesday. "There may still be some good summery days left."

Weather models project that September will be "warmer than normal," he said.

But with each day getting shorter by about three minutes, and the sun lower in the sky, the weather won't feel as warm as it did earlier in the summer.

When higher temperatures and sunshine do come later this month, Phillips said people should "get out there and enjoy it" to make up for "the bummer" that was August.

Smoke gets in your eyes

"What was missing in action [last month] was clear blue skies with white puffy clouds," Phillips said.

Weather in the Edmonton area was warm and dry in May and June, and warmer than normal in July, he said.

"People were spoiled. They were thinking, 'Oh my gosh, this is the summer of summers.' This is beer-drinking, muscle-shirt, tank-top kind of summer.

"And then August came."

The average temperature for August was around 17 C and the city saw lower than normal precipitation.

But when you factored in the smoke from B.C. wildfires, the rosy picture disappeared, Phillips said.

Edmonton choked on more than 200 hours of smoke in August from those wildfires.

"There was one stretch that you must have just thought the world had come to an end," Phillips said. "There were 96 hours in a row with nothing but smoke."

Once the smoke was gone, the nice weather went with it, he said.

The last two weeks saw only one day warmer than normal, and seven of the last nine days have been wet, with cooler than normal temperatures, Phillips said.