Western Canadian Wildfires, 2017 Edition

Most of my information focuses on BC wildfires, as that’s what affects me the most. I’ve also included cursory updates for Alberta, Saskatchewan, Yukon and the Northwest Territories. You can follow the links provided for more detailed information. BRITISH COLUMBIA Yesterday was a terrible day for wildfires in BC. Over 140 new fires were ignited…

No Drought in Sight (yet)

It’s amazing how much impact the weather has on your state of mind. It’s June and the land is green, lush and verdant after a cool, damp spring. The frogs finished their evening chorus a few nights ago, and the river is starting to drop. Yesterday we had almost 16 mm of rain—an event almost…

spring

Focus On Spring

It’s been a cold winter and cool spring here on southern Vancouver Island, with more snow than we’re used to. Right now our upper elevation snowpack is at 72% of normal, which isn’t bad but still holds the risk of another dry summer, depending what our spring/summer temperature and precipitation is like. Not that long…

Listening to winter in a land of extremes

This summer I was worried about drought. About the ability of the greatly diminished Cowichan River to support the fall Chinook salmon run. These worries seem silly now that the winter rains have arrived, with a record 27 days of rain in October. A sodden procession of greyness and damp. This is the land of…

Wildfires in the Canadian West – 2016 edition

I wrote a post about the Fort McMurray wildfires for the Science Borealis blog on Thursday. The goal was to focus specifically on the fire: when and where it started, and the background conditions leading to its astronomical spread. The purpose was also to remind readers that—for all the data and analyses we’ve undertaken to…