Sunny day in May at the Crofton ferry terminal. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Sunny day in May at the Crofton ferry terminal. (Photo by Don Bodger)

May showers avoided, June roller coaster expected in Vancouver Island weather

More days of sunshine and drier weather throughout the month

May weather isn’t always a good indication of what’s to come during the summer around the province.

The wettest May on record occurred in 2017 and, yet, that summer’s wildfire season turned out to be one of the worst on record. Conversely, a dry May in 2020 didn’t hold up through June and into early July with a mixed bag of weather that was far from summer-like.

May 2021 has followed suit from April with predominantly dry conditions around the Island.

Related story: Long dry spell in April unlikely to be duplicated in May

Just 29 millimetres of rain was recorded by Chris Carss, a volunteer weather observer/recorder for Environment Canada, at his Chemainus home during the month. The normal May yields 50.9 mm.

If the beginning of the week felt unusually hot, that’s because the thermometer nearly reached a record-breaking high for the beginning of June.

Temperatures at the Comox weather station on June 1 reached 29.1 C – just 0.3 C shy of the hottest temperature on record for the area on that day. In both 1924 and 1961, the highs reached a record-setting 29.4 C, said Environment and Climate Change Canada meteorologist Lisa Erven.

Despite the warm weather, Erven explained June is a “rollercoaster type of month” in terms of temperatures and precipitation, living up to its ‘June-uary’ nickname.

“We can really get all sorts of weather heading into early summer. Throughout most of B.C., a lot of places got a taste of summer.”

She noted while the ridge of high pressure was picked up on models a few days in advance, the weather in June can have drastic swings. While the mid-week will stay in warmer temperatures, from June 3 throughout the weekend to at least June 7, Erven said residents can expect a shift into cooler weather with showers, with a daytime high reaching 22 C on Thursday, June 3.

“We’re about to hit a major shift, so get out there today and enjoy the vitamin D, but do so with your layers of protection and make sure to stay hydrated.”

Even as the rain stayed away in May, temperatures were generally lower, with Carss recording a mean daily maximum of 17.4 degrees Celsius compared to the normal of 18.1 C and a mean minimum that matched the normal of 8.9 C. The extreme maximum of 24.5 C was only reached at the end of the month on May 31, with the minimum of a chilly 5.0 C on May 8.

But the number of days that were mostly or partly sunny and dry stood out at 20. The normal is just 13.

“As expected, May 2021 turned out to be another mostly springlike month like last year, but unlike Mays during much of the 2010 decade that often marked the beginning of the main season of summer weather,” noted Carss. “There were a few brief summer previews around mid-May, but temperatures generally averaged about a half degree below normal the rest of the time.

“More in keeping with summer was the rainfall which occurred with about average frequency during the month, but yielded only a little more than 50 per cent of the normal total accumulated amount for May,” he continued. “As might be expected for such a dry month, the total number of mostly or partly sunny days without rainfall was a good 50 per cent above normal.”

In the Comox Valley, the area reached 76.8 per cent of its normal precipitation for the month of May. In comparison, Nanaimo only reached 40 percent while Campbell River reached 50 percent.

In the next few months, the province will enter a dry season, and while precipitation measurements for the month are difficult to predict, Erven noted a cooler shift is expected at least until the middle of next week.

“Shower days are not so great for beach days, but help for drought conditions and forest fires. Spring was really dry, particularly in the southern part of the province – it hit the top five driest springs on record.”

For more news from Vancouver Island and beyond delivered daily into your inbox, please click here.

Weather

 

Blue skies, with snow-capped mountains in the background, at the Stuart Channel Wharves beside the Crofton pulp mill. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Blue skies, with snow-capped mountains in the background, at the Stuart Channel Wharves beside the Crofton pulp mill. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Wispy clouds against a bright blue sky over Chemainus during May. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Wispy clouds against a bright blue sky over Chemainus during May. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Just Posted

Google Maps shows significant traffic backups after a crash reported shortly before noon on Father’s Day, June 20. (Google Maps)
Saanich crash closes lane of McKenzie Avenue

Police say there were injuries, traffic is impacted

Hot rods, rad rods, muscle and sports cars spanning the decades made their way in a parade from North Saanich to Victoria on June 19. (Kiernan Green/News Staff)
PHOTOS: Classic cars cruise Saanich Peninsula in advance of Father’s Day

Retirement home residents from North Saanich to Victoria treated to a spectacle of hot rides

Victoria Regional Transit System routes 7 UVic/Downtown, 21 Interurban/Downtown and 53 Colwood/Langford will undergo changes as of June 28. (Black Press Media file photo)
Greater Victoria school routes scaled down for summer by BC Transit

Service changes take effect June 28, enhanced service returns this fall and winter

A bathtub kitchen garden is part of the lineup for this year’s Teeny Tiny Garden Tour to benefit Victoria Hospice. (Screenshot/Teeny Tiny Garden Tour)
Virtual garden tour for Victoria Hospice features trio of back yards

Online tour is free; calendar purchase and donation options raise money for the cause

Diana Durrand and Arlene Nesbitt celebrate the new artist space in 2014. Gage Gallery moves this summer from Oak Bay to Bastion Square in Victoria. (Black Press Media file photo)
Gage Gallery moving to Bastion Square

Vivid Connections, a showcase by Laura Feeleus and Elizabeth Carefoot, opens new venue June 29

Jesse Roper tackles weeds in his garden to kick off the 2021 season of What’s In My Garden Man? (YouTube/Whats In My Garden)
VIDEO: Metchosin singer-songwriter Jesse Roper invites gardeners into his plot

What’s In My Garden, Man? kicks off with the poop on compost

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
Fort St. John man arrested after allegedly inviting sexual touching from children

Two children reported the incident to a trusted adult right away

A Lotto 6/49 ticket purchased in Parksville for the June 19, 2021 draw is a $3M winner. (Submitted photo)
Winning Lotto 6/49 ticket worth $3M purchased on Vancouver Island

Lottery prize winners have 52 weeks to claim jackpot

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

Patrick O’Brien, a 75-year-old fisherman, went missing near Port Angeles Thursday evening. (Courtesy of U.S. Coast Guard)
Search for lost fisherman near Victoria suspended, U.S. Coast Guard says

The 75-year-old man was reported missing Thursday evening

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

Most Read