If you live in Pickle Lake, Ontario, and it is possible that you do not, you will not need to be told that record snowfall downed trees and knocked out the power earlier this year. How much earlier? Well, five days. Yes, on June 12. Snow in midsummer is not unknown in this bucolic community of 388 souls within handy driving distance of both Pickle Crow, surely one of Canada’s very best place names, and New Osnaburgh and Osnaburgh House. But we digress. The point is, had there been a warm spell there on December 12, or on June 12, you’d have been told it was global warming. Instead, well, a record 10 centimetres of snow within weeks of the summer solstice is just weather.
In case you think we are making a freezer section out of a couple of pickles, June also saw snow in Algonquin Provincial Park which, Ontario being big, is a 20-hour drive from the various Pickles and Osnaburghs. Not as much snow as in Pickle Lake, mind you. In Algonquin Park according to park assistant superintendent Rick Stronks it “was actually accumulating in some areas, primarily on vegetation” before quickly melting. But it happened on June 3. So snow in Ontario in June in two different places, neither on or near even southern Hudson Bay let alone Polar Bear Provincial Park.
Normally around this time somebody says that it’s because global warming isn’t about warming, it’s about climate change which can be anything provided it seems potentially scary. But this snow apparently fails that test.
Global News explained that the snow in Algonquin Park fell from the sky where it had formed because it was cold up there, which might not be new information to some people. And then it added something that might be new information to many: “Stronks said that while it’s unusual for Algonquin Provincial Park to see snow in June, it has happened in the past.” Furthermore the cool, wet spring has delayed the appearance of some of the bugs that visitors to Ontario often notice but they will soon be out and about because, quoting Stronks again, “We don’t see any real lasting impacts from this kind of weather.”
You get the idea? Life is weird and so is weather and it’s cool when something odd happens as long as it’s not dangerous like a tornado. As Stronks told Global, “There’s always been natural variations, and the plants and animals that live in the park are sort of adapted to having that variation”. Egad. Really? Natural variations? Plants and animals adapted?
Why weren’t we told?