Prairie farmers may have to resort to the Old Farmer’s Almanac for encouraging snowfall predictions

(Kara Oosterhuis/RealAgriculture)

There are few things as talked about between farmers as the weather. For a huge part of the Prairies, most conversations revolve around moisture, and as we very quickly approach the fall season many farmers are thinking ahead to snowfall expectations.

There are many weather and moisture prediction methods out there, but even meteorologists will tell you it’s hard to accurately make any predictions more than 14 days in advance even with the marvels of modern computer modeling.

Earlier this week I spoke with the general manager of the St. Mary’s River Irrigation District, who suggested higher than average snowfalls are going to be required in order to fill reservoirs for the 2024 irrigation season. Will that hope come true?

Curiosity got the better of me. So while Environment Canada is predicting a warmer, drier winter, the Old Farmers’ Almanac may be where farmers and ranchers alike end up going for some positivity.

The farmhouse staple is predicting a “normal” (Seriously, though — what is normal?) winter for the southern Prairies, with a significant more amount of snowfall than usual. The caveat here is British Columbia — where the Almanac is calling for a dry winter.

The Old Farmers’ Almanac is saying the coldest periods will be mid-November, early and late January, and mid-February. If you ask me, February is already cold and miserable. At least bring us some snow with it. Snow is expected in April, too. Maybe that’s a chance for some post-thaw moisture?

Like I said, the accuracy of the Almanac is worth a challenge, but the power of positive thinking may be necessary to get us through this winter.

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Categories: Drought / News / Weather / Western Canada