Snow pack in Shuswap mountains reaches 130 per cent of normal

Flooding may be in the future as snow continues to accumulate to historic levels

Snow packs in the mountains of the Shuswap are well above normal for this time of year and have reached levels that might herald spring flooding.

According to a Feb. 1 report published by the BC River Forecast Centre, snow pack in the South Thompson basin which includes the Shuswap is at 130 per cent of normal levels. The Okanagan and Boundary basins to the south also have deep snow packs; they sit at 129 and 128 per cent respectively.

Read More: Driver critically injured in Highway 1 collision near Salmon Arm

Read More: Escort recounts frightening story in Okanagan Sagmoen trial

The snow level recorded at an automated monitoring station located 1,500 metres above sea level north of Seymour Arm at the northern tip of Shuswap Lake shows the snow pack’s rapid rise through the months of January and February. The snow at the monitoring station outpaced last winter’s accumulation in mid January. Shortly before Feb. 1, the snow accumulation total, which is recorded daily, exceeded the maximum recorded in late January and early February for any year between 2004 and 2019.

The other automatic monitoring station in the area, which is located near Enderby, has recorded snow accumulation vastly exceeding last year’s for the same dates. The satellite-linked camera at the station is still transmitting but its lens appears to be buried in snow.

Read More: Film on growing wildfire threat to screen in Salmon Arm

Read More: VIDEO: A look at how Canadian workplaces can prepare for a coronavirus outbreak

The River Forecast Centre notes that the likelihood of spring flooding rises with high snow packs, particularly when they reach 120 per cent of normal values. Deep snow in the mountains does not make spring flooding inevitable but the levels observed in the South Thompson, Okanagan and Boundary basins as well as other parts of the province suggest an emerging risk of flooding.

According to the forecast centre, by February, about two thirds of the snow pack that will accumulate over the winter has generally already fallen.



jim.elliot@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Severe weather

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

UPDATE: One dead after motorcycle collision on Highway 97 near Peachland

The collision closed Highway 97 off-and-on throughout Sunday afternoon

Okanagan whisky lottery adds new twists

Winners of Okanagan Spirits’ Laird of Fintry lottery announced in four batches beginning Sept. 28

QUIZ: Do you know what’s on TV?

Fall is normally the time when new television shows are released

Public input sharpens vision of Oyama Ithmus Park

Proposed project to shape the long-term future of waterfront land in Lake Country

COVID-19 outbreak declared at Calvary Chapel Kelowna

Attendees of the Sept. 13 morning church service may have been exposed, Interior Health says

B.C. records 98 more COVID-19 cases, most in Lower Mainland

One new senior home outbreak, Surrey Memorial outbreak over

Canadian ski resorts wrestle with pandemic-vs.-profit dilemma as COVID-19 persists

Few are actually restricting the total number of skiers they allow on the hill

Three arrested after Keremeos shooting that severely injured one man

The victim was transported by air ambulance to a regional hospital

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Victoria-area RCMP locate high-risk sex offender thanks to help of taxi cab driver

Scott Jones wanted on a Canada-wide warrant, ‘a risk to women and girls,’ police say

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

A (virtual) walk around the world by 88-year-old B.C. man

George Doi says it’s simple: ‘I like walking’

End of CERB means uncertainty for some, new system for others

As of a week ago, the CERB had paid out $79.3 billion to 8.8 million people

West Kelowna Warriors complete sweep of Vernon Vipers

Warriors edge Snakes 2-1 as Okanagan Cup BCHL exhibition tournament begins

Most Read