REPORTING · 4th May 2013
We reported one month ago the Skeena River was tracking at extreme historical lows
as were the available snow packs for the spring melt and run off. A little has changed since then however our prediction for the coming summer remains the same. All indications are the Skeena River will see the lowest levels on record this summer without significant rainfall.
The Skeena River rose slightly this past month with the rain but has returned today to the extreme record lows at only 3 meters measured at Usk by the Environment Canada measuring station. This measurement is as low as has ever been recorded for this time of year.
The snowpack in the watershed region directly east and northeast, the region of mountain ranges draining into the Skeena east of Highway 16, has risen only slightly and remains marginally above the lowest snow pack ever recorded. These records are maintained and provided by the BC Governments Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, River Forecast Centre.
One other snow measuring station, north of Kispiox, towards the Sacred Headwaters, has shown a significant increase since our last report. Although still below the average the recent precipitation has added 200mm of water the Ministry refers to as ‘Snow Water’. Another 200mm is required to measure up to the historical average. This seems entirely unlikely with the extremely unusual forecast issued today by Environment Canada’s Weather Office.
The entire week coming up is predicted to record temperatures never seen at this time of year. Every day will see the thermometer hit over 20 degrees Celsius and barely falling below the double digits at night. From a quick glance at the available records, since 1971, only 5 days of May have ever exceeded 20 degrees Celsius. The highest temperature ever recorded in May was on the 29th in 1983 at a whopping 34.6 degrees. To have a forecast presented at the beginning of May indicating an entire upcoming week of temperatures in the low to mid 20’s is extraordinary.
This is perfect spring barbeque and early garden planting weather. We can only hope the following weeks and months produce more precipitation.
It may not just be a long hot summer of protests by citizens against the destruction of the environment by greedy, immoral industrialists and the Harper Government, but truly a long hot and very dry summer.
BC's Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, River Forecast Centre Snow Pillow Graph at Tsai, northeast of Terrace and Highway 16. Dark blue is current & red is lowest record.
BC's Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, River Forecast Centre Snow Pillow Graph towards the Sacred Headwaters north of Kispiox. Dark blue is current & red is lowest record.
Enviroment Canada's Weather Prediction issued this morning, May 4, 2013.
What do Catholics have to do with the river?
Comment by maggiejo johnson on 7th May 2013
What do Catholics have to do with the river dilemma?
At least the Pope has deemed it a 'sin' to not tend to the environment within our means....unlike SOME gov't peeps I know who are in office and are repeatedly causing/advocating for harm to our environment.
Jimmy Boy, such an antagonist
Comment by Merv Ritchie on 6th May 2013
One would think you are attempting to emulate me, but just on the other side of the left/right spectrum.
Catholics have a knack for calling their buildings of assembly 'Sacred' this and 'Sacred' that. Do they own the right to the word? And truth be told, they are the least sacred of anything considered spiritual.
We/me wonders how you portend to speak for "the vast majority"? For a large number of people who are spiritually connected to the land, air and water, those elements which contribute to the continuance of life, the word 'sacred' does not begin to describe the importance of the region.
To 'bastardize' your final statement;
What I have noticed in the last while that areas become "expendable" or "void of life" when mining is involved and there is a possibility of financial gain for any stock market play.
James, this was an article on the pending dry summer and low river flows. We do not mind in engaging in a debate, but how about choosing a different thread to have this discussion? Lets keep this thread of debate sacred to the low snow pack and water levels okay?
No rain in forecast til Sunday
Comment by Merv Ritchie on 6th May 2013
And if this heat keeps up, there will be no snow left in the outback for the rain to fall on. The river is likely to rise very quickly, then fall very quickly, and we will see salmon spawning in salt water (as the elders remember their elders talking about) as there will be no water left in the Skeena for them to swim upstream in. Unless of course, the rains come throughout June and July.
Rain on snow
Comment by david dickinson on 6th May 2013
If we get rain combined with temperatures like this, the Skeena will be flooding its banks within two weeks.
Comment by James Ippel on 5th May 2013
In 1965 we were swimming in Lakelse Lake in mid May and the water was luke warm.
As a point of interest to you Merv, In the minds of the" vast majority "of people from Northwestern BC there are no "Sacred Headwaters" but instead the "Headwaters" of the three main rivers in our area.
What I have noticed in last while that areas become "Sacred" or "Pristine" when exploration or mining is involved, and there is a possibility of financial gain for some.
And the hot clear conditions are predicted further
Comment by Terrace Daily News on 5th May 2013
Issued: 11:00 AM PDT Sunday 5 May 2013
Today, May 5, Mainly sunny. High 23. UV index 5 or moderate.
Tonight, A few clouds. Low 9.
Monday, Mainly sunny. High 20.
Tuesday, Sunny. Low 8. High 23.
Wednesday, Sunny. Low 9. High 22.
Thursday, Sunny. Low 10. High 23.
Friday, Sunny. Low 9. High 26.
Saturday, Sunny. Low 10. High 25.
Comment by Northernm Oldie on 4th May 2013
In 1969, so hot we were swimming in Lakelse Lake in late May, do not recall the rivers ever been this low at any time.