Wednesday December 24, 2015
Where will the cold come from? Warmer weather forecasted in Hamilton
T.S. Eliot wrote that the cruelest month is April, when flowers emerge from “the dead land, mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots with spring rain.”
But the poet never experienced our December, which may end up the warmest on record, with confused buds blooming on land that doesn’t know when to die.
“People are loving it,” said Environment Canada climatologist David Phillips. “Forget about the whole Great White North reputation, people see this as payback for the last two winters, which were brutal.”
The Hamilton forecast not only calls for a green Christmas, but the temperature spiking to 15 C Thursday.
Mild weather has been influenced by the impact of El Niño — unusually warm water in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of South America.
Phillips cautions that December is not over yet, but offers these highlights:
• Hamilton’s average 2015 December temperature has been 4.8 C; the normal is -2.3 C, a seven-degree difference that Phillips calls “shocking.”
• Total snowfall has been 1.8 centimetres; the lowest on record from fall through to Jan. 1 was 5.4 cm
• It can all change fast, but: “I see no end in sight for 2015. Because of El Niño, I don’t see where the cold will come from. The ground is warm, lakes wide open, and any cold air that comes from the north is being moderated.”
Reaction depends on who is weathering the warm snap.
Golfers delight: Knollwood golf club in Ancaster, for one, reopened, heralding on its Facebook page it’s “the season that never ends” and noted 174 golfers teed-off one day.
Commuters like it, as well as joggers, and those who never tire of talking weather — the last refuge of the unimaginative, said Oscar Wilde. (And journalists.)
Squirrels in Hamilton, meanwhile, have been spotted looking noticeably plumper from eating everything in sight like it’s an endless September. (Source: Hamilton Spectator)