Not always Cold in Canada

by frank
(Granger, IN, USA)

Victoria BC

Victoria BC

I live in northern Indiana and went fishing up to Vancouver Island in June and found the weather to be very pleasant. Later I visited in January and while expecting cold and ice etc I was pleasantly surprised to find a very mild climate.

Comparing the winter of Northern Indiana to Vancouver island B.C. I was shocked to find it much warmer and less cold than I had previously thought.

Barry's Response - Yes, the Vancouver Island is the mildest place in Canada in winter. In addition, it has a pleasant, cool summer, making it one of the best places to live. Here's a graph that compares the high and low temperatures for the two regions year-round so you know what to expect. Check to see whether it displays in Fahrenheit or Celsius on your device. Gary, about an hour southeast of Chicago, and Port Hardy, on the Queen Charlotte Strait, are the two places it presents.

Search this site for more information now.

The differences in climate between Vancouver Island and Indiana

Compared to Indiana's inland continental climate, Vancouver Island's climate is milder because of its coastal location and the moderating effects of the Pacific Ocean. Here's a comparison:

- On Vancouver Island, on the west coast of Canada, you'll find a mild coastal climate with distinct wet and dry seasons. Vancouver Island benefits from its proximity to the Pacific Ocean, which moderates temperatures and brings plenty of moisture. Winters are mild, and summers are cool. Rainfall is heavy throughout the year, especially during the winter. Coastal areas are prone to fog and marine influences. Water temperatures in this region don't vary much, staying within a few degrees of 10°C (50°F).

- Indiana is located in the Midwest region of the United States and has a humid continental climate. Indiana has four distinct seasons, with hot summers and cold winters. There's a wide range of temperatures in the state, with summer highs reaching into the 80s to 90s Fahrenheit (around 27 to 35 degrees Celsius) and winter lows below zero. They get a mix of rain and snow during the seasons. Water temperatures in southern Lake Michigan, which affect Indiana's climate, fluctuate wildly from nearly freezing in February to warm enough for swimming in August.

Vancouver Island's coastal location and influence from the Pacific Ocean results in milder temperatures and more precipitation than Indiana. As a result of the oceanic influence, Vancouver Island has relatively cool summers and mild winters, while Indiana has hot summers and cold winters. In Indiana, hot, muggy conditions can happen anytime from June to September; on the BC coast, it rarely happens. There's usually a frost-free growing season starting early April at the northern coasts of both places and lasting six months or slightly longer on Vancouver Island.

For rainfall patterns the Pacific moisture gives Vancouver Island a lot more rain, while Indiana has a more evenly distributed pattern of rain and snow. There is considerably less wind on the Island than anywhere in the US Midwest at all times of the year, making the climate there quite pleasant.

Comments for Not always Cold in Canada

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How does Victoria rank on a scale of 1 to 100
by: Barry

...on a variety of weather parameters (average temperature, rainfall and such). This chart compares Victoria with 99 other largest Canadian cities.;category=1

by: Wolcin

I have been noting the temperature changes in the past few years and I found something remarkable, even you might have noted it too. The climates have started to behave completely differently each time. Sometimes it reaches either extreme’s too.

From Barry - There are times when it reaches both extremes. Droughts, floods, and other natural disasters have been linked to this. There's also been damage to wildlife, plants, and human settlements. Some blame climate change.

its a little rainy
by: Anonymous

how about cloudy with a chance of BORING

From Barry - We all have dull weather sometimes. People can get used to their local weather and it can become mundane. When the weather is consistently the same for a long time, it can cause boredom and restlessness.

How about the rest of the year
by: Russ

Sounds nice for winter. How about the rest of the year? Anything going on besides fishing? I might like to visit.

From Barry - Some of the world's most beautiful scenery can be found in BC. During the summer, you can go hiking, camping, and exploring the many provincial parks. Music festivals, art shows, and theatre performances are also available in urban areas.

What else besides fishing?
by: Raven

I have never been there. I'm not a fisherman, so I'd like to know what else there is to do there. It's good to know the weather is mild, but what else is there to make it a worthwhile visit?

From Barry - Especially for its natural beauty and vibrant cities, you might want to visit British Columbia. For enthusiasts, it's great for outdoor activities like skiing and hiking. The whole province has a lot to offer. From historical sites to museums to shopping and dining in the cities, there's something for everyone.

Plus, the locals are friendly and (did I mention?) the scenery is amazing!

The Air's a Bit Thin
by: Wally

Actually, I've been to Vancouver Island, although not in January, and it is indeed a beautiful place with a relatively mild climate. This article, though, is a bit "thin" in its content, giving me no real information beyond a vague "it's-not-as-bad-as-I-thought" opinion -- which in itself, if you think about it, is a bit negative. I would prefer to read about the positives, such as what makes Vancouver an attractive place to visit. Or at a minimum, I would like to get some actual data, since "mild" weather is pretty relative. How about some actual temperatures, or monthly averages?

From Barry - I've added some representative temperatures and weather descriptions. This will help us understand the current climate in different parts of the world.

In one of the links above, I've provided a chart provided by, a great website for comparing climates. If you're interested, I highly recommend it.

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