First snowfall about average

Chilliwack's first snowfall of 10 cm Thursday night was just about average for the month,

Chilliwack’s first snowfall of 10 cm Thursday night was just about average for the month, according to Environment Canada weather-watcher Roger Pannett.

But it doesn’t come near the whopping 66.8 cm (just over 26 inches) that fell on Nov. 16, 1996.

That snowfall lasted the rest of the month and into December when a second monster dump paralyzed Chilliwack and most of southwestern B.C.

The “Blizzard of ’96” as it came to be called started on Dec. 28 and covered Victoria, Vancouver and parts of the lower Fraser Valley with nearly a metre of snow.

Travelers stranded in Chilliwack when the Trans-Canada Highway was closed bunked in emergency shelters provided by the city.

Last week’s snowfall didn’t last long, but not to worry – Pannett said there’s more to come.

“This is an El Nino year and there’s the potential for more of this,” he said.

El Nino is a cyclical warming of the Pacific Ocean that occurs every three to seven years and causes weather disturbances around half the planet.

rfreeman@theprogress.com

twitter.com/paperboy2

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