The winter of 2020-21 has been a snowy one, with 35 per cent more snowfall from Oct.1 to March 31 than Thompson’s historical average of 187 centimetres per year.
October and February were the only two of the last six months in which less than 40 centimetres of snow fell. There were 25.2 cm in October and 28.2 in February. December saw 41.2 cm, January 41.6 and March 48.8, while November delivered a whopping 69.9 cm. Added up, that’s just a hair under 255 cm. Every month since October has seen above-average snowfall amounts.
March’s total was more than double the historical average of 23.4 cm for the month. Nearly that much fell in one day – March 29 – when Thompson received 21.6 cm. That was less than the official record of 26.4 cm on March 16, 1996. However, snowfall amount measurements are not available from Environment Canada for March 7 and March 8, 2017, when a spring blizzard basically shut down the city, with multiple vehicles abandoned where they got stuck only to be dug out a day or two later when the snow subsided. There were at least 61 cm of snow in March that year, plus however much fell on the two days with missing data.
Only one other day last month – March 26 – saw double digit snowfall (11.6 cm) but there were nine other days with measurable amounts and seven days with trace amounts.
The amount of snow on the ground at the end of March – 76 cm – is the highest since 2014, when there were 90 cm. There were 100 cm of snow on the ground at one point in March 2017 but the amount fell to 59 cm by the last day of the month.
Unfortunately for those who are already dying for spring, there’s likely some more snow still to come before summer. Thompson’s average snowfall in April is 23 cm and in May it’s 11.2 cm. The only months of the year for which Environment Canada doesn’t have average snowfall data are July and August, through June and September only average 1.1 and three cm, respectively.