The climatic conditions of the American Arctic archipelago are still little known, which, in this respect, together with a large part of the Mackenzie basin and the northern half of Labrador, fall within the polar zone; the annual averages are almost everywhere below −10 ° (Jones Strait, −36 ° in January, −17 °, 5 in July); the ground remains covered with snow and frozen to great depths all year round. This is the territory of the barren grounds, or “barren soil”. The stunted vegetation that allows you the very short summer (three months) owes its rapid development to the length of the period of insolation, which nevertheless manages to operate only a superficial thaw. The extremes tend to lessen as one proceeds towards the SW. in the middle basin of the Mackenzie, where the greater distance from Hudson Bay, the modest altitude (overall not exceeding 200 m.) and the influence of the warm Pacific currents mark the transition to the less rigid climate dominant throughout the rest of the northern penepian, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and northern Nova Scotia. The winter averages are still very low (absolute minimums of −50 ° are found even slightly in the N. of Lake Superior; −62 ° on the high Yukon and −55 ° in the Ungava), but summer temperatures are considerably higher and reach highs of over 30 ° in the inner S area of Hudson Bay. The annual excursion narrows near the sea due to the less severe winters and cooler summers (influence of the ice carried by the currents); however, the annual averages still remain below −5 ° for most of the region, and the soil here too is covered with snow and frozen at more or less great depths until the beginning of summer.
According to topmbadirectory, the atmospheric humidity is generally strong, while the rainfall is not very significant (400-750 mm.), And usually concentrated between the end of summer and autumn, the driest being the winter months.
This continental character cannot be said to have substantially changed even towards the E. and SE., Where even large water surfaces, in communication with the Atlantic (S. Lorenzo, Great Lakes), penetrate deeply into the land, and the ocean even fringes the outer margin of the penepian (Labrador). Winter temperatures fluctuate between −5 ° and −12 ° in January, exacerbated by frequent blizzards, reminiscent of burane of Siberia; snow falls even more abundantly than in the innermost areas (about 4 m per year in the province of Quebec, compared to an average of 1.5 in the southern area of the Great Lakes), compared to which the summer averages are considerably lower ( from 15 ° to 20 ° in July), which determines even less favorable conditions for agriculture, although the rains are more abundant there. Growing from W to E. (from 750 to 1500 mm. Approximately), the precipitations gradually shift the period of their maximum frequency from spring (Great Lakes) to summer (S. Lorenzo) and to the beginning of autumn (Labrador), tending to be distributed more regularly throughout the year as we proceed towards the NE. The coasts of Nova Scotia, like those of Newfoundland, are shrouded in very dense fog from February to March, adduced by the cold offshore winds, while in the Great Lakes and in the S. Lorenzo the navigation is prevented by the ice for the whole period from December to April. Average winter and summer temperatures rise, albeit slightly, in southern Canada from −1 ° to −6 ° in January, from 20 ° to 25 ° in July; but also the daytime excursion becomes more marked, with not infrequent changes of 20 ° to 25 ° in a single day, which heralds the characteristic climatic behavior of the extreme north-Appalachian area.
Quite different conditions occur in the strip of plains between the foot of the Rocks and the Great Lakes: in very rigid winters, which recall the region on both sides for their absolute minimums; of Hudson’s Bay, summers are no less excessive, but this character of continentality is decreasing towards the West, while at the same time the variable rainfall decreases, even more than due to their seasonal behavior (70-80% from April to September), for their quantity from year to year. The rains, often falling in the form of violent showers, damage the crops, which drought often makes haphazard; on the other hand, the influence of warm westerly winds (chinook), which descend from the Rocciose, spreading in spring towards the N. and NE.; with the melting of the snow they allow crops to considerably extend their northern limit.
Only a short strip of Canada (southern British Columbia) is included in the climatic domain of the Rockies; the rapid decline of the elevations towards the North causes the transition from the Mackenzie basin and from the upper Alberta area to the internal plateaus located east of the coastal ranges to be gradual, while the latter mark a very clear limit towards the Pacific. The result is a very marked contrast between the slender marginal face along the ocean, with a maritime and humid climate (Port Simpson: 2630 mm.) With relatively mild winters and not excessive summers, and the British Columbia plateau, where next to an annual excursion that oscillates between extremes not very far from those of the innermost regions, there are unprecedentedly minor precipitations (Kamloops 280 mm.), so that crops become locally possible only with the help of irrigation. Proceeding towards S., along the coasts of the Pacific, the temperatures increase significantly (Victoria, on Vancouver Island, has almost the same annual average as Venice, which is however 3 ° more in the S.), while the rainfall does not essentially, it deflects from its high values (Agassiz 1700, Victoria 960 mm.), which are always higher than those of the other parts of the Dominion, and of the European areas on the Atlantic at the same latitude.
On the whole, it can be said that the climate of Canada is characterized above all by the rigors of winter and the abrupt transition between extreme seasons; the acclimatization of European immigrants was however possible, given that these disadvantages are contrasted, especially in the inland area more favorable to agricultural settlement, the benefit of a dry and healthy climate, while among other things the same winter abundance of snowfall favors the crops, preparing for them, with the spring melting, a soil suitably soaked in water just at the opening of the vegetative period. The following table, at the top of the next page, gives the main climatic elements of some of the most characteristic localities in Canada.