Monday, January 09, 2012

Winter returns?

More ice than snow this winter in Montreal. Saturday crews salted and sanded all day. ValleyWX pic

Winter will slowly start to make a return across most of the country over the next two weeks. Those of you who have been experiencing record highs, such as Alberta, will begin to cool down as early as this week. Here in Montreal, it hasn't exactly been shorts and sandals weather, but it has been an easy winter so far. It looks like colder air and the likelihood a few more storms will greet us starting next week. In the near term a few weak weather systems will bring southern Quebec light snow and seasonable temperatures through Wednesday. The nights will be chilly with the days rather mild near the freezing point. On Thursday, a stronger low pressure will approach Quebec from the southern US and bring with it another surge of moisture and mild air. We may be looking at mixed precipitation for both Thursday and Friday. By the weekend temperatures will cool down noticeably and skies will clear out.

Just how warm has this winter been? Here in Montreal our December was one of the warmest on record with and average temperature of -2.6C. The normal is -6.3C. We have had only about 35cm of snow this winter, most of it falling in small amounts, the biggest storm being 8cm back on November 23. Yesterday to add to the hundreds of record highs established in the past week across the country, six more were broken in Alberta and one in Saskatchewan. The warmest, Whitecourt, Alberta, reached 10.8C breaking a record (9.4C) that had held since 1943.

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