Kamloops Weather

The climate of Kamloops is semi-arid due to its rain shadow location. Because of milder winters and aridity, the area west of Kamloops in the lower Thompson River valley falls within Köppen climate classification BWk climate. Kamloops gets short cold snaps where temperatures can drop to around −20 °C (−4 °F) when Arctic air manages to cross the Rockies and Columbia Mountains into the Interior.

The January mean temperature is −2.8 °C (27 °F). That average sharply increases with an average maximum temperature of 4 °C (39 °F) in February. The average number of cold days below −10 °C (14 °F) per year is 8 as recorded by Environment Canada.

Although Kamloops is located above 50° north latitude, summers are warm to hot with prevailing dry, and sunny weather. Daytime humidity is generally low (sometimes less than 20% after a dry spell) which allows for substantial nighttime cooling. Occasional summer thunderstorms can create dry-lightning conditions, sometimes igniting forest fires which the area is prone to.

Spring and Fall are usually pleasant and dry but can be short in duration.

Kamloops lies in the rain shadow leeward of the Coast Mountains and is biogeographically connected to similar semi-desert areas in the Okanagan region, and a much larger area covering the central/eastern portions of Washington, Oregon and intermontane areas of Nevada, Utah and Idaho in the US.

These areas of relatively similar climate have many distinctive native plants and animals in common, such as Ponderosa Pine (Pinus ponderosa), big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata), prickly pear cactus (Opuntia fragilis in this case), rattlesnakes (Crotalus viridis), Black widow spiders and Lewis’s Woodpecker.

The hottest temperature ever recorded at the airport, 40.6 °C (105 °F), occurred on July 31, 1971; the hottest reliably accurate temperature ever recorded within the city, 41.7 °C (107 °F), occurred first on July 27, 1939 and again two years later on July 16, 1941.

1280px-Thompson_River_Kamloops

Climate data for Kamloops Airport
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high Humidex 15.8 17.0 23.3 31.9 36.8 39.0 47.4 40.3 38.4 31.2 22.8 15.0 47.4
Record high °C (°F) 15.9
(60.6)
17.0
(62.6)
23.3
(73.9)
33.0
(91.4)
37.2
(99)
39.1
(102.4)
40.6
(105.1)
39.6
(103.3)
34.9
(94.8)
31.3
(88.3)
22.8
(73)
16.1
(61)
40.6
(105.1)
Average high °C (°F) 0.4
(32.7)
4.3
(39.7)
11.0
(51.8)
16.6
(61.9)
21.5
(70.7)
25.1
(77.2)
28.9
(84)
28.3
(82.9)
22.3
(72.1)
13.7
(56.7)
5.6
(42.1)
0.3
(32.5)
14.8
(58.6)
Daily mean °C (°F) −2.8
(27)
0.1
(32.2)
5.2
(41.4)
9.9
(49.8)
14.6
(58.3)
18.4
(65.1)
21.5
(70.7)
20.9
(69.6)
15.6
(60.1)
8.5
(47.3)
2.1
(35.8)
−2.7
(27.1)
9.3
(48.7)
Average low °C (°F) −5.9
(21.4)
−4.0
(24.8)
−0.6
(30.9)
3.2
(37.8)
7.7
(45.9)
11.6
(52.9)
14.2
(57.6)
13.4
(56.1)
8.8
(47.8)
3.3
(37.9)
−1.4
(29.5)
−5.6
(21.9)
3.7
(38.7)
Record low °C (°F) −37.2
(−35)
−28.3
(−18.9)
−26.1
(−15)
−8.8
(16.2)
−5.6
(21.9)
1.1
(34)
3.3
(37.9)
0.6
(33.1)
−3.9
(25)
−17.1
(1.2)
−28.3
(−18.9)
−36.1
(−33)
−37.2
(−35)
Wind chill −42.0 −36.7 −33.9 −11.5 −4.6 0.9 4.0 3.0 −6.5 −23.2 −39.1 −45.1 −45.1
Precipitation mm (inches) 21.1
(0.831)
12.4
(0.488)
12.8
(0.504)
14.2
(0.559)
27.3
(1.075)
37.4
(1.472)
31.4
(1.236)
23.7
(0.933)
29.4
(1.157)
19.4
(0.764)
23.3
(0.917)
25.4
(1)
277.6
(10.929)
Rainfall mm (inches) 5.3
(0.209)
5.9
(0.232)
9.7
(0.382)
14.0
(0.551)
27.3
(1.075)
37.4
(1.472)
31.4
(1.236)
23.7
(0.933)
29.4
(1.157)
19.0
(0.748)
14.2
(0.559)
7.1
(0.28)
224.3
(8.831)
Snowfall cm (inches) 18.7
(7.36)
8.0
(3.15)
3.5
(1.38)
0.2
(0.08)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0.3
(0.12)
10.9
(4.29)
21.9
(8.62)
63.5
(25)
Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm) 9.7 7.2 6.8 6.2 10.2 10.7 8.4 8.0 7.6 9.0 10.0 11.7 105.6
Avg. rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm) 3.6 3.8 5.5 6.1 10.2 10.7 8.4 8.0 7.6 8.8 7.1 3.4 83.3
Avg. snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm) 7.6 4.1 1.9 0.3 0.03 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.3 3.9 9.3 27.4
 % humidity 72.6 60.0 43.0 35.6 35.9 36.4 33.5 34.4 41.4 52.9 65.9 70.9 48.6
Mean monthly sunshine hours 55.2 95.6 165.3 202.8 251.6 252.0 303.4 289.5 223.3 130.9 63.7 46.6 2,079.8
Percent possible sunshine 20.9 33.9 45.0 49.0 52.4 51.2 61.2 64.3 58.7 39.2 23.5 18.6 43.1
Source #1: Environment Canada
Source #2: [1]

 

Hottest summer Most days above 30 °C (86 °F) Driest Warmest spring Fewest fog days Most sunny days in warm months Most growing degree days Most days without precipitation
Rank among 100 largest Canadian cities 1st 1st 2nd
(next to Whitehorse)
2nd
(next to Chilliwack)
2nd
(next to Penticton)
2nd
(next to Portage la Prairie)
3rd
(next to Windsor and St. Catharines-Niagara)
3rd
(next to Medicine Hat and Lethbridge)
Value 26.94 °C (80.5 °F) 29.28 278.98 mm (10.98 in) 9.65 °C (49.4 °F) 7.28 148.93 2308.61 258.12
Data is for Kamloops Airport (YKA), in the city of Kamloops, 5 Nautical miles (9.3 km; 5.8 mi) west northwest of the town.