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from The Essential Paradise, series sourcebook

Doc. 1.04. Climactic concerns Edit

The British Paradise Islands lie in the eastern Pacific Ocean, north of the Marquesas, west of Clipperton, at about 130 degrees west of Greenwich and about eight degrees south of the Equator. The time zone all year round is 9 hours behind Greenwich (same as Alaska). Surrounded by thousands of kilometres of open water, the territory is notoriously vulnerable to the whims of oceanic weather but even in the middle of the tropical latitudes four distinct climactic seasons can be discerned.

High season Edit

The high season is considered to be from late April till early October. Technically winter in the Southern Hemisphere, the equatorial climate is warm and stable, 28-30º (C) at midday and 24-26º at midnight. Light drizzles are common just before dawn; but by midmorning all is dry, with breezes at 10-20 knots from northeast or east. Tourists from all parts of the world flock to Paradise; and the local economy swells.

Storm season Edit

Storm season sends them packing. It rises abruptly in early November, with fierce gales roaring out of the west, often of hurricane force and with no nearby land masses to dampen them. Rains are hard and frequent with high tides, sea surge, and inland flooding. Temperatures swing wildly as barometric pressure plunges and soars; days and nights can be anywhere from 12º to 36º.

Hot season Edit

By the December solstice, the storms have passed. Dense humidity lingers in motionless air as temperatures soar; days can be 32-34º and nights of little relief. The predawn drizzles evolve into heavy mist and fog through midmorning, although the intense equatorial sun makes this an attractive period for winter-weary Northern-Hemisphere sunseekers.

Rain season Edit

As fine as the high season can be, rain season is its antithesis. For six to eight weeks straddling the March equinox, the deluge pours down unrelentingly nearly every day. Local legends have blamed the monsoons for birth defects, insanity, crime and general cultural chaos. Hotels and businesses close, and often the schools are unable to hold sessions. Little air moves, or else there is a full gale; and inland humidity is oppressive. Day and night temperatures do not vary from 30-34º. Tides rise, streams overflow and trees fall; and road washouts and power outages are common.

Festival Edit

See also: Festival season in the British Paradise Islands Edit

The last of the heavy rains subsides by mid-April. The traditional folk festival celebrates another rain season come and gone; and for a full week after Easter gay havoc takes over the entire territory. Shops and hotels reopen in anticipation of the arrival of the tourist trade. Daily morning drizzles continue through early May as the weather resumes its tropical perfection.

See also El Nino in the British Paradise Islands

* * * Edit

from The Essential Paradise, doc.1.04; b.2012.0704; from original text of 1995.0627. ©Jonnie Comet Productions Ltd. All rights reserved. Edit

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