Ecuador: El Niño & More

El Niño phenomenon in Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands.


Galapagos Islands.

El Niño is the climate pattern created by extra warming of surface waters along the tropical west coast of South America.  This affects weather from Australia to the USA, but especially along the coast of Ecuador and South America.  El Niño events occur irregularly at two-to seven-year intervals.  There is no regular cycle.  Every decade or two there is an extra strong El Niño.

A strong El Niño can bring good news to the US West Coast (extra rain and snow) and  the Atlantic East Coast (less hurricanes), but not so good to Ecuador as this can create a lot of rain and flooding on the coast.

The National Weather Service, NOAA, El Niño Synopsis (1) suggests that a strong El Niño is likely this year and says: (1) “There  is a  greater  than 90%  chance  that  El  Niño  will  continue  through  Northern Hemisphere winter 2015-16, and around an 85% chance it will last into early spring 2016.

“Collectively,  these atmospheric  and  oceanic features reflect  a significant and strengthening El Niño. All models  surveyed predict El Niño to continue  into the Northern Hemisphere spring 2016, and  all multi-model averages predict a strong event at its peak in late fall/early winter.”

Many of our freinds in Ecuador have been writing to us about El Niño.

Kjetil Haugan at Haugan Cruises sent this note:  “The El Niño phenomenon has arrived this year and there are many concerns about its consequences in the Galapagos Islands.  Although this natural phenomenon is unpredictable and its consequences will depend much on the behavior of the underwater currents, we are currently experiencing some of its effects on the navigation.  Strong winds have presented in the archipelago making navigations irregular due to the waves; this is reduced by the double hull of our Catamarans making the navigation more stable in comparison to other boats.

“Even though there are some changes in the weather conditions, the Galapagos National Park has not closed any visitor sites, therefore our Catamarans Cormorant and Ocean Spray will make no changes on their itineraries.  Natural events such as El Niño phenomenon have shaped the ecosystem of the Galapagos Islands for centuries, and is thanks to this events that life in the Galapagos has so many beautiful and amazing characteristics. In the end we have to remind that nature will always find a perfect balance in this earthly paradise.”

Haugan Cruises offers Ecuador Living Club members 10% to 15% discounts on Galapagos Cruises.  See more here.

Roberto Ribadeneira, the Ecuador exporter, who just set his dates for the next Ecuador export tour wrote this:  Gary, a number of things have been happening here. The most important were serious rumors that Cotopaxi might erupt.  However it appears that it is just throwing smoke and has been in the same stage for three weeks now. For a while it seemed that it was escalating and may have been worse.

We are excited about the export tour because we have been having great success in marketing with ac ouple of Rotary Clubs in the USA and helping them raise funds.

There is also El Niño hitting the Coast in November, which they say is going to be the worst in the last 15 years.  Since we will be on the other side of the country in the Andes El Niño won’t affect us directly, but also the government has $800 million to help in case things go as bad as predicted.

Learn more about Roberto’s export tour below.

Currently Ecuador’s coastal weather does not seem to be affected by El Nino.

However it is a good idea to check (2) if you are planning a trip.



(2) Manta weather

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