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NNSL Photo/graphic

A plane sits at a Yellowknife Bay dock in this NNSL file photo from Oct 26, 1990. During that week, more than seven centimetres of snow fell in a blizzard. - NNSL file photo

Baby, it's bland outside

Jessica Klinkenberg
Northern News Services

Yellowknife (Nov 03/06) - Think last month was unseasonably warm?

On Oct. 3, 1943, global warming was years in the future, but still the thermometer reached 17C, the hottest October day ever recorded in Yellowknife.

The coldest day was Oct. 30, 1991, when the low temperature dropped to -27.5C.

According to Environment Canada, the high on Oct. 3 this year was 8.6C, while the Oct. 30 coldest day of the month with a low of -11C.

Warmest day in Oct. this year was Oct. 5, with a high of 10.3C.

Art Dodman moved to Yellowknife in 1939 for school, and has been in the territories for almost all his life since then.

"There always was a lot of snow," he said of October in Yellowknife over the years.

"You used to be able to depend on the weather getting cold. Now it goes up and down like a yo-yo."

Looking back over the last 30-40 years, he said that the cold was dependable. "And it would stay cold."

Dodman knows the cold well, having worked for the Hudson Bay Company in the fur trade.

"Our trappers would go out and bait their traps," he said. So being outside in the dead of winter wasn't something unusual for him.

Dodman also said that he remembers Yellowknife Bay consistently freezing over by October.

"It's these winds. A heavy wind comes and that breaks up the ice," he said as to why he thinks Yellowknife Bay isn't freezing like he's used to.

Dodman said that it's not just the winters that have been weird.

These last couple of years were the first time he has been able to grow tomatoes.

"About four years ago, I was able to grow tomatoes in a hothouse. The last time I tried four years before, I got nothing. The growing season has just changed that quickly."

Environment Canada is predicting a warmer-than-average winter based on data collected between 1961 and 1990.