QCOSTARICA – Though typical for the period between Christmas and the first week to ten days of January for temperatures to dip below normal, this dry season in the Central Valley, as well as in Guanacaste and the Central Pacific, temperatures are not expected to rise to average levels.
This because the region is still under the influence of the La Niña phenomenon, which has been with us since the second half of 2020, and which will possibly continue until April, to then give way to a neutral phase.
“In fact, these first months are not going to be as warm as they normally appear, not even March and April, which are usually hot,” said Daniel Poleo, from Costa Rica’s national weather service, the Instituto Meteorológico Nacional (IMN).
“That is why the residents of the Central Valley and Guanacaste feel it colder than normal during the early morning hours (madrugadas in Spanish),” added the meteorologist.
This morning, Thursday, the lowest temperatures in the country were felt in the Cerro de la Muerte 2.5° Celsius (36.5° Fahrenheit) and in the Irazú volcano, hovering around 2.9° Celsius.
In areas such as Jaboncillal de Goicoechea, the thermometer registered 9.2° C, while in Patio de Agua, Coronado, 8.3° C.
In Alajuela, it also felt cold this morning. The La Garita weather station (by Recope) marked 15.3° C, a little warmer, 15.7° C, at the Juan Santamaría airport.
In Zapote (San José) this Thursday morning was 14.6° C.
The city of San José usually has a minimum of 16 degrees in January, this Wednesday it was 14.7° C.
All the above are about three to four degrees Celsius lower than normal.
In Guanacaste, Liberia recorded 18.7° C, which also shows the drop, since generally in that area the minimum for January is 21° C.
According to Poleo, this pattern will continue throughout this week and it is because there is very little cloudiness during the early mornings, so that when that cloudy filter disappears the temperature dissipates more easily into the atmosphere and it feels colder.
Another factor that influences a lot is the wind since gusts make the thermal sensation (what the person perceives) cooler than what the thermometer actually indicates.
Sometimes due to the wind, temperatures of two degrees Celsius or more are felt below what would be recorded on days without wind.
For this Thursday the gusts will decrease a bit, but the IMN expects that they will regain their strength for the weekend and that will also make it feel colder during the day, mainly in the Central Valley, the mountainous areas, and Guanacaste.
In the Caribbean and the South Pacific, there is more cloudiness and rainfall, so that there will be many differences in temperatures.
According to Poleo, residents of the South Pacific (Osa, Golfito, Coto Brus and Corredores) will not have a dry season in 2021, since the rains have prevailed since last year.