By the time it had run its course eight months later, the giant El Niño of 1997-98 had deranged weather patterns around the world, killed an estimated 2,100 people, and caused at least 33 billion [U.S.] dollars in property damage.
Brace yourselves. We're just months away from another El Nino and it's shaping up to be considerably more severe than what we got eighteen years ago.
As for Canada, here's the 1997 recap from Envirocan:
What truly made the weather remarkably unseasonable was that a year ago much of the Prairies had more than 100 cm of snow on the ground, and nighttime temperatures were between -20 and -30°C. In 1997, El Nino seemed to be turning the world upside down with knee-deep snowfall in Guadalajara (the first time in 116 years), and the fact that it was warmer on the Canadian Prairies than in Mexico City. El Nino mildness didn't make it all across Canada. Atlantic Canada suffered through one of its coldest and snowiest starts to winter on record.
Even though El Nino is something that occurs in the eastern Pacific, its impacts are felt worldwide and they vary from continent to continent and, within continents, from region to region.
For those needing a more scientific explanation, Chris Farley has you covered: