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Break Out The 4×4, Costa Rica’s Rainy Season’s Almost Here

Costa Rica Rainy Season 4x4Coming as early as the end of March, and with expected heavier rains than normal, Costa Rica’s rainy season is almost upon is. Its intensity is though expected to be less than last year where many roads became impassable in anything other than a 4×4, according to the Instituto Metereoligo Nacional (IMN) – Costa Rica’s national weather service.

Usually the rainy season comes between May 15 and November 15 each year, although it depends upon the region – starting earlier in the South Pacific region and the Central Valley 4-6 weeks later. Scheduled start dates fpr the 2011 Costa Rica rainy season according to the IMN are – South Pacific: April 1 to 5; Central Pacific: April 26 to 30; Central Valley: May 6 to 10; North Pacific and Caribbean: May 16 to 20

Although the 2011 rainy season is expected to be wetter than normal in certain regions, it is not expected to exceed the records set in 2010. The Central Valley’s normal average rainfall for the season is 2.000 ml and for 2011 is expected to be 2.600 ml, an increase of 30% but slightly down from 2.640 in 2010. South Pacific region’s normal average rainfall of 3.460 ml is expected to increase for 2011 to 4.152, a 20% increase which is much lower than 4.671 ml in 2010. North Pacific region’s average rainfall of 1.970 ml is to increase to 2.660 ml, a 35% increase but down from last year’s 2.817 ml.

Apparently, Costa Rica remains under the influence of La Niña, but the El Niño phenomenon that brings with it a drier period is expected to commence sooner. The IMN forecasts the hurricane season in the Caribbean to begin June 1st and end November 30th, with potentially 3 hurricanes and 4 cyclones to affect Costa Rica in some way.

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