Peter Finlayson, Ormstown Weatherman
The warm beginning to December was just too much to overcome for the second half of the month as the average temperature ended up being a degree and a half warmer than normal. The average temperature for the month settled at -2.8° C, while the normal is -4.5° C. Even still, December 2021 wasn’t even close to a record for being warmer than normal.
Precipitation in December was very close to normal, with 46 mm of rain and 25 cm of snow which combined to make 72 mm of total precipitation. Despite some feeble attempts at dropping rain and freezing rain during the last week of the month, the thin snow cover stayed on the ground to provide a wintery scene for the holidays.
Very little frost has set into the ground, and a few tractors could be seen out in the fields catching up on some last-minute ploughing. The Seaway remains open given the complete absence of ice on the water, as has been evidenced by the long line-ups of cars at the two lift bridges waiting for boats to go through.
The average temperature for 2021 was +8.27° C, making it the third warmest in the last 55 years (since records started to be collected at the farm), just behind 2019 and 2012. The caveat is that July was the 5th coolest in that period of time, and had it been a normal July for average temperature, 2021 might have been a record. There were 22 days between May and August when the temperature exceeded 30° C and an equal number when the maximum daily temperature was above 28° C.
Precipitation for the year was pretty close to normal at 996 mm, with the 10-year average being 1035 mm. As with the average temperature, one abnormal month dictated the end-of-year outcome. May experienced a record for drought, and a normal May and June for rainfall would have brought 2021 above the average for total precipitation.
The first three months of 2022 are forecast to be ‘wintery’ – average to below average temperatures with only a few isolated days of extreme cold and no extended periods of thaw until the end of March. February has weekly snow and freezing rain activity forecast throughout the month, as does March. All the best for 2022!