It seems Central Albertans had to wait for the end of September to get truly hot, summer-like weather.
Saturday’s sweltering high of 30.3C was record-breaking for that day, edging past the previous high of 29.8 set on Sept. 24, 2001.
It was also the hottest day of the year — until thermometers climbed slightly higher on Sunday, to 30.8C.
While Sunday’s weather did not break any records, thanks to a freakishly warm Sept. 25 ,1987, with a high of 33.5C, it was appreciably balmier than the hottest day of this past summer, which reached only 29.2C on Aug. 24.
“I don’t have any proper answer,” for why summer has been delayed in Central Alberta, said Environment Canada meteorologist John McIntyre, He acknowledged that the cool, rainy June didn’t feel too summer-like — nor did July, during which temperatures largely remained in the low 20s.
August was much nicer, but the mercury didn’t rise past the 30C mark.
McIntyre said Saturday and Sunday’s heat was caused by a southwesterly air flow that created dry, chinook-like conditions.
While today’s high is only expected to reach 15C, the southwesterly flow is supposed to return for the rest of the week, as Thursday’s forecast high is 18C and Friday’s and Saturday’s are 24C.
A big cool-down is expected for Sunday, when temperatures plunge by about 10 degrees.
While Monday’s high should rebound to a sunny 21C, McIntrye warned the warmth will not last. Forecasts for the end of next week show cold drizzle for Oct. 5 and 6 and the possibility of snow on Oct. 7.
“The long-range forecast is for a colder than normal winter for Central Alberta,” said McIntyre. “It’s not supposed to be particularly wet, but cold.”
— copyright Red Deer Advocate