Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Just Wait 10 Minutes

I live in a place called Calgary, Alberta... I've pretty much lived and considered it to be my home my whole life. Though I do dream of living by the ocean or at least a small body of water.... In time. Maybe I'll become what they call "Snow Birds" when I retire. Of all the large cities in Canada, Calgary happens to have the most unpredictable weather of them all- it's an on going joke that if you don't like the weather here just wait 10 minutes (and it will change.). In order to illustrate this I have copied a quick little synopses of what someone has written about what the Calgary climate is really like.

"July is the warmest month with a 24-hour average of just over 15 and January has about minus 7.The city gets about 169 frost free days per year on average. Some of them occur in the fall and even winter (during Chinooks) after the growing season has ended, so we normally have only about about 115 consecutive frost free days per season, from around May 23 to September 15.

The wild temperature fluctuations characteristic of Calgary weather are partly attributed to the continental climate. The high altitude plays a role, and some of the remaining credit goes to the turbulent winds in the wake of the Rocky Mountains. The temperature reaches 20°C or better, about 85 days each year. And 30° only about four times. Chinooks and cold fronts can result in temperature changes of 10° or more in a single hour.

Calgary has a definite dry season and a moist season. The city gets a little over 400 mm of total precipitation in an average year. Of that we often get 120 cm of snow between September and May, which melts down to about 120 mm of water. That's the drier season.

The better part of the 300 mm of rain falling between May and September constitutes our wet (and growing) season. This still makes xeriscape gardening, a technique that conserves water, worthwhile in Calgary weather. We can go months without significant moisture even in the summer.

Most rain in one day - 95.3 mm on July 15, 1927. Most snow - 48.4 cm on May 6, 1981. We usually see some kind of precipitation on 113 days out of the year. And we normally have about 88 days with snow on the ground (1 cm or more).

The winds around here are worth mentioning as well. Southern Alberta in general is recognized as a windy area year round. Calgary's highest gust at 127 km/hour occurred in June, 1956, probably during a thunderstorm not during one of the
winter Chinooks we are so famous for.

Is it sunny there? At over 2400 hours on average of bright sunshine per year, Calgary weather, along with many other south Canadian prairie locations, makes us one of Canada's sunniest places.It can be bright, sunny and extremely cold and wind all at the same time in winter. It's something to experience."

That's right! It's something to experience!

Copied from Stuff In The Air

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