Snow has already blanketed local mountains and caused problems for nearby highways, so Environment Canada is hoping drivers take the change in weather seriously.
“This is very topical right now,” said meteorologist Doug Lundquist. “The snow levels are coming down and people need to be aware of it, it should scare us to get into action and prepare for winter travel.”
While some have commented the switch in to winter seemed sudden, Lundquist said the weather is following a typical pattern.
“It is usually a back and forth this time of year, sometimes it is warm at the high terrains and it is rain and melts the snow and other times it is colder,” said Lundquist.
“We had about 10 centimetres of snow over 24 hours on the Coquihalla and Okanagan Connector summit, but that is changing over the weekend and into next week.”
Lundquist said they are predicting conditions to warm up over the next few days.
“Sunday afternoon and into Monday and Tuesday it is looking warm enough that even in the high terrain it will come down as rain,” he said.
“Even the valley bottom will be a couple of degrees above average with highs of about 14 C, so pretty typical for this time of year.”
He said motorists should take the changing weather seriously on the mountain passes, but we are not expecting any real snow in the Okanagan Valley yet.
“It is already chain-up season or winter-tire season, but in the valley bottom we usually wait until about November before it hits lake level, the middle of November is the earliest it usually sticks at lower elevations,” adds Lundquist.
“But, higher parts of Kelowna, Joe Rich, parts of Kamloops and the Shuswap have got snow already. It is that time of year.”
For more information on driving in winter conditions, click here.
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