Cold weather will ring in the New Year

We'll be ringing in a cool New Year's Day as arctic air continues to blow in over the East Kootenay.

Cold weather will help us ring in the New Year.

Cold weather will help us ring in the New Year.

We’ll be ringing in a cool New Year’s Day as arctic air continues to blow in over the EK.

The weather is expected to stay in double-digit lows from now until the early days of January, said Jennifer Hay, meteorologist with Environment Canada.

“It’s still looking cold over the next week, but I think we should have the winds decreasing,” Hay said.

Dec. 30 was likely the coldest day, as the temperature dropped to -24.4 in the morning.

“That’s the coldest you’ve had so far this month actually,” she said, adding the last time it was that cold in Cranbrook was Dec. 2 when the temperature reached -24.

For New Year’s Day, Hay said they are predicting a low of -18.

“It looks like we have a bit of cloud coming across the province, so when that comes in, if it’s there at night, it acts as a bit of a blanket — you don’t lose the radiational heating as much,” she said. “We’re not expecting any major weather systems. The dominant weather is the arctic air over B.C. and the ridge of high pressure that’s in place.

“There’s some cloud and then there’s a chance of flurries in the weekend, but otherwise no major weather systems, no major pattern change. The coldest air does look like it pushes into the prairies, so it slightly moves out of our region.”

She said that might lead to a bit of warmup.

Hay noted most of the weather models show the cold weather going into January 5 or 6, before weather systems start to push from the more southern regions.

The 30-year daily average temperature in December is -7.2. So far this month it’s been -5.

“So overall, actually warmer than normal but not really very abnormal, just a smidgen warmer.”

The usual snow depth at month end is 19 cm. There is currently 13 cm on the ground at the moment.

The coldest day ever in Cranbrook was Dec. 30, 1968. The temperature that day reached an ice-cracking -40.