What is this all about?

The winter of 2015-2016 marked my 10th year of either walking or cycling to work everyday. From 2006 through 2009 I had a 3.5km/30 minute walk each way, and from 2009 onwards it's been a 7km/20 minute ride.

And after 10 years, I've started thinking about the weather. And more specifically, about what is a "typical" Edmonton winter day? I feel like the last 5 winters have all been really mild, but is that true? And were things really so much worse when I was a kid? Is my memory of this stuff accurate at all?

Thankfully, Environment Canada has allowed me to answer my questions by making historical weather data easily available on their website. For central Edmonton the records are available back to 1880, although they are broken up between 3 weather stations:

I consolidated all of that into one spreadsheet. There is a bit of overlap between the stations (1937-1943, 1996-2005), but for simplicity's sake, whenever a new weather station is available I take its numbers instead of the older station. A cursory look does show variations of +/- 1C between the stations, but for what I'm doing I'm fine with that.

This is not going to be rigorously scientific or statistical. My main goal is to try to make sense of my experiences as a year-round "active" commuter in Edmonton.

This is also not about Climate Change. There are climate scientists who know much more about that than I ever could. I'm just playing with 130-odd years of weather records, and making some charts.

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