Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Freezing Rain

 Montreal? Not really, Santa Fe, New Mexico yesterday afternoon (AP photo)

ICE SAFETY: The ice in and around Montreal and southern Quebec is very unstable this year, please stay off it until further notice.  ICE SAFETY HERE

It is a very cold morning in Montreal after yesterday's warm high of 6C. Temperatures have been falling since late afternoon and are now at -8C with a gusty northwest wind and windchill values as cold as -15C. Today will be sunny across the area, but cold at -6C. Clear skies will give way to an increase in clouds overnight with a low of -11C. Then the nasty weather starts, I wish it was snow, but sadly as I said to start the week it looks like ice. Strong low pressure that has blasted the southern plains with a blizzard producing over 25cm of snow and foot high drifts in New Mexico and Kansas is poised to move close to Montreal late Wednesday. The warm from associated with that system will produce an area of freezing rain in the St. Lawrence and Ottawa Valley's on Wednesday before changing to rain as the roller coaster ride continues. Temperatures should rise above freezing by late in the day and remain that way Thursday. High pressure will then move in behind the storm with another dip in temperatures Friday and Saturday before some snow on Christmas Day. How much snow for the 25th? It is way too early to tell at this point, but stay tuned.

For traveling around the region today, all directions are clear, dry and cold. The only travel concerns would be northeast of Montreal where snow fell yesterday. Some roads towards Quebec City and points north may still be icy or snow covered. Blowing snow remains a problem along highways in the Saguenay and Lac St. Jean region. Otherwise travel to the northern US and Ontario is perfect today. As far as Wednesday goes we will likely see freezing rain warnings posted for a portion of our region.

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