Friday, June 28, 2013

Wet Canada Day weekend

Flood warnings remain in effect for a large portion of central and northern New York State. This picture is from Oswego, NY this morning. (WKTV - Utica)
We may manage a decent Canada Day Monday out of the next four days, but that would be about it. A big ridge will develop in the west with warm air across the southwest US streaming into waterlogged Alberta and Saskatchewan, however here in the east a conveyor belt of humidity and moisture will continue to move north from the Gulf of Mexico.

Today low pressure spinning its way across New York State will lift into southern Ontario this afternoon. The heaviest rain overnight, with extensive flooding, has been falling across central New York from Lake Ontario northeast towards the St. Lawrence Valley. That rain will move into southern Ontario and Quebec today with amounts in the order of 25-50mm (1-2 inches). I think the steadiest and heaviest rain with some thunder will be over eastern Ontario from Kingston to Cornwall. In Montreal winds have been strong overnight in the 30-50km range out of the northeast which means cool temperatures. We are currently at 14C and we will struggle to make it to 16C. The rain will taper later today, but the risk for showers and some thunder will be present each day right through the weekend as the flow of moist, humid air remains out of the southwest. Temperatures will warm back into the mid 20`s for the weekend. We may see a little more sun late Sunday into Monday.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Heavy rain event for Montreal & New England

Epic temperature battle
Yesterday was a battle of wind directions in Montreal. The day started with a warm southwest wind but quickly changed as a marine air mass moved southeast down the St. Lawrence Valley. The air mass was so chilly that on Tuesday evening Quebec City fell from 28C (83F) to 17C (63F) in one hour. Quebec City struggled to make it to 14C yesterday. Meanwhile Montreal in the warm and muggy air saw temperatures rapidly rise to 23C yesterday before the northeast wind arrived in the city putting a cap on highs for Wednesday. Temperatures on the east end of Montreal Island settled in at only 18C (65F) while in the southwest corner of the province St. Anicet was 29C (85F). Southwest winds slowly won over in Montreal with temperatures eventually making it to 25C (77F) late in the day.

Most of the day was cloudy but some breaks late in the day on L'Ile Perrot produced enough fuel to generate a decent thunderstorm around 8:30pm. The storm clipped my region before moving south into the US. About 7.2mm of rain fell in 10 minutes at my home, but only a trace at the airport.

Projected rain amounts for Friday from WPTZ 5 Plattsburgh, NY.
Flood Watch
A flood watch is now in effect for all of northern Vermont and most of upstate New York excluding the St. Lawrence Valley. A very moist weather system will lift north into New England on Friday with heavy rain and thunderstorms. The rain should begin late tonight and last all day Friday. Impressive amounts of 2-4 inches are likely in New England wit 25-50mm (1-2 inches) in southern Quebec. A warning may be needed for portions of our area as well. The rain is falling on already saturated soil and full rivers. Flooding is anticipated across many areas of the Adirondacks and Green Mountains. Unsettled humid weather is forecast for Ontario and Quebec well into the holiday weekend with more showers and thunderstorms.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Wet weather continues for Quebec & Ontario

Tree damage from Monday's storms here on L'Ile Perrot. (ValleyWX)
It will be another day of muggy, humid air with scattered afternoon showers and thunderstorms and temperatures near 28C. Overnight lows will remain warm, near 21C for Montreal. Yesterday we managed another 30C day here on L'Ile Perrot before clouds thickened around 1pm and storms moved across the region. The most intense activity moved across Eastern Ontario and into New York and Vermont. Additional storms with very heavy rain over the Adirondacks moved into the Champlain Valley and remained south of Montreal. There was a few decent cells across the middle portion of the Island of Montreal with some hail and heavy rain, but otherwise it was a pretty quiet afternoon here on L'Ile Perrot. Look for the same today with some morning breaks followed by thunderstorms after lunch.

The ground is becoming saturated in many parts of southern Quebec, New York and Vermont. The news for the weekend does not look any better at this time. More showers and thunderstorms are possible Friday with a general rain over the Canada Day weekend as an upper level low moves east from Manitoba. We will iron out the details as we get closer, but some flooding is possible for portions of New England. Temperatures will drop below normal in the showers and cloud cover.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Tropical air mass with thunderstorms for Montreal

Strong thunderstorms move across L'Ile Perrot on Monday afternoon. The storms produced 7mm of rain here on the island and toppled some trees. (ValleyWX)
It is a very warm and sultry Tuesday morning here on L'Ile Perrot with temperatures already in the mid 20's and high humidity (24C with a humidex of 25C). Dew points are in the low 20's across Ontario and Quebec making it feel quite uncomfortable outside. We did get some relief on Sunday after highs reached 30C at Trudeau and easily over 30C (86F) most other places including 31C here on L'Ile Perrot, and 32C (90F) at St. Anicet. The heat generated a line of strong thunderstorms late in the afternoon that produced hail in the Ottawa Valley and then moved towards the St. Lawrence Valley and points south. The storms created widespread power outages in Quebec with 30,000 customers in the dark. It also kept the Montreal Fire Department busy with numerous calls for downed trees and power lines. The storms prompted a tornado warning for Thetford Mines, we will see later this morning if Environment Canada can confirm one or not.

Winds gusted to over 50km/h in Montreal and most certainly higher locally. The storms also caused a serious accident on Interstate 89 near Burlington, Vermont last evening. Three vehicles and a tractor trailer collided in the heavy rain sending the truck over the edge of a overpass and into the Winooski River seriously injuring the Quebec driver.

Today we will see a repeat of Monday with warm and humid temperatures reaching near 30C across the region. Clouds will increase with rapidly developing thunderstorms late this afternoon across eastern Ontario and into southern Quebec, New York and Vermont. They could be severe once again, and a watch or warning may be issued.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Alberta flooding claims three lives - warm & humid for Montreal

The Alberta flooding is just devastating as an upper level low stalled over the foothills has produced close to 200mm (8 inches) of rain since Wednesday. The sun is out this morning in Calgary but the air remains moist and unstable with a good chance of afternoon thunderstorms. No rain at this time is welcome. The swollen Elbow and Bow Rivers swallowed up chunks of downtown Calgary and surrounding neighborhoods on Friday including the famed Saddledome and grounds for the upcoming Calgary Stampede. The city and province have mobilized forces including 1200 Canadian Army troops as more than 300,000 people have been moved to higher ground. The flooding has also claimed at least three lives in heavily damaged High River south of Calgary. The flooded region stretches from Canmore east through Calgary to Medicine Hat and south the Montana border.

Above images are Downtown Calgary on Friday (Canadian Press photos)
Montreal Weather
We are into a long weekend here in Quebec, call it what you want, it is a day off. Today is rather warm and muggy with showers and perhaps a thunderstorm as a warm front crosses the valley. This will set the stage for the first real blast of heat and humidity across Ontario and Quebec. Temperatures will be near 30C on Sunday with partial sunshine, and into the 30's Monday. Humidex values will be into the high 30's in Montreal perhaps near 40C in southwest Ontario. There will be a chance of thunderstorms each afternoon in the sultry air. The nights will be warm as well, near 21C (70F).

Friday, June 21, 2013

Historic flooding in southern Alberta

Water rescues were the order of the day in High River, Alberta on Thursday. (Lorraine Hijalte - Postmedia News)

Historic flooding is sweeping southern Alberta this morning as the water from nearly 150mm of rain swells creeks and rivers. The flooding has forced evacuations of nearly 100,000 in Calgary as well as devastated the Towns of Canmore and High River. The water washed out numerous roads including the Trans Canada. Officials have had to rescue hundreds stranded in their homes on Thursday as the water rose in a matter of hours. The culprit is a stubborn low pressure area west of Calgary stalled along the foothills and raining out. Yesterday thunderstorms dropped nearly 45mm of additional rain on Calgary, while Livingstone has had nearly 165mm since Wednesday morning. Both the Bow and Elbow Rivers are cresting today in Calgary with major flooding forecast. High River remains under a mandatory evacuation with widespread flooding across the city. Another 15-25mm of rain is possible today in the flooded region.


Thursday, June 20, 2013

Warmer - humid weather for Ontario & Quebec

A spectacular shot of a massive waterspout (tornado over water) in the Gulf of Mexico moving inland near Grand Isle, Louisiana on Wednesday afternoon. The storm was as much as 1 mile wide and damaged one home and power lines.
Summer heat and humidity will begin building into Ontario and Quebec as early as Friday. Today will be spectacular in Montreal with warm temperatures near 25C, light winds and abundant sunshine. On Friday a warm front will begin to lift across Ontario and Quebec with showers and thunderstorms developing. They won't reach Montreal until early Saturday. The weekend at this time looks ok, with more sun than clouds. There will be periods of thunderstorms especially in the late afternoon, but it will not be a washout. This will be typical late June & July weather with humidity on the rise and high temperature pushing 30C (86F) by Sunday and into next week. Overnight lows will warm as well to nearly 20C by Monday.

There has been plenty of strong thunderstorms across western Canada over the last 48 hours. Heavy rain, in some cases over 75mm has produced flash flooding in southern Alberta. Meanwhile tornadoes and hail have been reported in southwest Saskatchewan near the Cypress Hills. Slow moving low pressure has been the culprit with more strong storms expected today in southern Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

Tropical Storm Barry
The tropics are active once again with the development of tropical storm Barry in the southern Gulf of Mexico. The system is small in nature with 45mph winds, located about 30 miles east of Veracruz, Mexico. Landfall is expected today with the main threat being heavy rains and flash flooding. Forecasters expect 5-10 inches of rainfall along Barry's path which is more than enough to cause deadly flash floods and mudslides.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Much better weather on tap for Quebec & Ontario

A few showers are possible again today as a weak front moves across the region. We lucked out on Monday as the day was dry in Montreal with the showers and stronger storms remaining well south of the city across New York and Vermont. I don't expect any thunder today, the showers will be very light and scattered if at all. High pressure will then move into southern Quebec with sunshine and warmer weather right into the weekend. At this time some showers are forecast for late Saturday and Sunday, but by no means does it look like a washout. Temperatures will be warming to near 27C (80F) and humidity levels will also be on the rise as we head into the official start of summer on Friday. Next week at this time also looks warmer and more humid.

Monday, June 17, 2013

More thunderstorms for Montreal

It was a perfect day on Saturday for the annual Cruisin At The Boardwalk in Sainte-Anne-de-Belleveu on the shores of Lac St. Louis. (ValleyWX)
The good news is there is sunshine on the way for the balance of the work week here in southern Quebec. The bad news is we can expect more showers and thunderstorms today before we see any clearing. After a spectacular, near perfect Saturday with warm temperatures and sparkling blue sky, Sunday was less than perfect. Early highs of nearly 20C were quickly cooled with northeast winds and rain ahead of a slow moving warm front. About 10mm of rain fell here on L'Ile Perrot to increase the monthly total to over 120mm. A trailing cold front will move across the St. Lawrence Valley this afternoon with some fairly strong showers and thunderstorms along it. Small hail, gusty winds and a decent amount of rain as much as 25mm are possible with any storms from Ottawa to Cornwall to Montreal and points south. The threat will diminish by late in the day as the front settles south into New England. High pressure will then enter Quebec with sunny skies for the balance of the week and near seasonable temperatures warming from 22C to near 27C (80F) by Friday.

Friday, June 14, 2013

A few thoughts on weather & Father's Day

The Stars & Stripes being buffeted by rain and wind from the remains of Tropical Storm Andrea last Friday at North Hampton Beach. Happy Flag Day! 
(ValleyWX Photo)
Happy Father's Day weekend and Happy Flag Day to my US readers. It has been a long day here as I continue to suffer from one of the worst colds I have had in many, many years, not a great way to spend your birthday! I always find it ironic that I can survive the long, cold and dark winters virtually healthy only to come down with this type of cold bug in June!

Father's Day always reminds me of the role my later father played in my keen interest and understanding of weather. It was likely a June day like today in my very early years when he told me to encounter my profound fear of thunder by learning about it instead of running from it. Advice I wish I could apply to other areas of my life. I did learn, a little too closely, it may have backfired on him early as I began to understand the mechanics of thunderstorms and knew when they would occur, despite my parents telling me there would not  a storm on any given night. "Don't worry the skies are clear". Yes, but the humidity and dew point, southwest wind well you get it. Eventually curiosity and adventure overcame fear and I loved watching them instead of hiding under their bed when I heard thunder. This developed into a life long passion, constantly nurtured by Dad. Thank you for that and everything else you gave me.

Today was a rather warm day, 25C (77F) here on L'Ile Perrot with a few scattered showers and a rumble of thunder to our southwest but nothing here at the house. It will clear tonight setting up a spectacular Saturday, sunny at 24C. Father's Day Sunday at this time looks unsettled in southern Quebec and Ontario as low pressure will approach from the Great Lakes. Clouds will increase early with showers and thunderstorms by afternoon. Highs will be cooler around 19C. Enjoy the day despite the weather & give your Dad a big hug! I miss mine everyday.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Water levels running high & fast Quebec - NY - Vermont

A washed out road near Saranac Lake, New York on Wednesday. (
As tempting as it is to venture out onto area waterways this weekend, be advised that many rivers and streams from southwest Quebec into New York and Vermont are running high or even at flood stage and very fast. Be very careful as currents are unpredictable and swift, as well the water is still very cold. Heavy rainfall in May in Vermont and over 100mm (4 inches) of rain so far this month in southern Quebec and upstate New York has created this situation. I have recorded 109mm of rain since June 1 here on L'Ile Perrot, with amounts much higher south and west of my location. Flooding continued yesterday across portions of Franklin, Clinton and eastern St. Lawrence Counties in New York. The Salmon and Saranac Rivers have both left their banks in places flooding roads and farmland. The water will slowly recede today into the upcoming weekend as the bulk of the moisture with the next storm remains to our south, A surprise complex of showers and storms moved out of the Laurentians yesterday afternoon and across the western end of Montreal into upstate New York, the exact places that don't need more rain. I recorded a quick 6mm (0.25") here on L'Ile Perrot. Today will be the same sort of day, sunshine to start, clouds and perhaps an isolated shower or thunderstorm late this afternoon. Highs will be 22C today and 26C Friday with a slightly greater chance of afternoon thunderstorms Friday.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Flooding across upstate NY

Regional rainfall totals, in inches,  from the last 24 hours.
The rain has come to an end this morning with just some scattered showers expected today as low pressure moves east into Miane. It was steady and at times heavy Tuesday with around 72mm in St Anicet, 41mm here on L'Ile Perrot and 34mm at Trudeau Airport. Further southwest across St. Lawrence County in NY as well as Franklin and Clinton Counties, heavy rain put down between 2-3" (50-75mm). Sharp rises in some rivers including the Saranac have prompted flood warnings for the region. Several roads are closed this morning until flood waters recede. More showers are in the forecast for Thursday as yet another frontal system approaches the region. Very strong to severe thunderstorms will be occurring with this system throughout the Midwest and Ohio Valley into the east today and Thursday. It appears the worst of the weather will remain south of Montreal at this time. The weekend still looks decent with more sun than clouds, dry, and highs around 23C.

Usually one returns from vacation feeling refreshed, but I seem to have come down with a nasty cold, my first of the year, in summer no less. It is affecting lots of people at work and home. I would like to blame it on the wild swings in weather this spring, but I know better. Perhaps it has something to do with the swarms of mosquito's the size of birds occupying my neighborhood. In any event, if you have this, as many do, take care.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Rainy, windy day for Montreal

It is not very June like across the St. Lawrence Valley this morning as a cold northeast wind prevails along the northern edge of a warm front. The front will remain south of Montreal all day leaving us in the chilly air. It is currently 15C (59F) and I am afraid that is it for the day. Radar shows a wide area of rainfall stretching from southern Ontario and western New York across southern Quebec. I recorded about 7mm overnight with another 20-30mm likely today. The rain will last well into Wednesday as the front and low pressure slide south of the Quebec border. Skies will very slowly begin to clear late Thursday with a gradual warming of temperatures back into the 20's.

A funnel cloud and possible tornadoes were observed near Baltimore, Maryland on Monday afternoon. Unsettled weather with heavy rain will affect a large portion of the east coast today.
On Monday strong thunderstorms affected portions of southern Manitoba and southeast Saskatchewan with hail, flooding and a few isolated tornadoes. Lots of hail damage was reported in and around St. Leon, Manitoba. String thunderstorms with at least two confirmed tornadoes also affected portions of the middle Atlantic states. Areas around Baltimore and the Chesapeake Bay reported flash flooding and funnel clouds.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Another wet week ahead for Montreal - New England

One final spectacular sunrise picture taken last Thursday from Hampton Beach, the calm before Andrea. This week will be wet in Montreal and across New England including Hampton Beach where a flood watch is posted once again. 
(ValleyWX Photo)
Well it is back to reality this morning after a week on the shores of the Atlantic. All in all I would say I had a decent weather week considering how unpredictable and variable this spring has been. The week started with record heat and ended with a deluge from Tropical Storm Andrea. This week will feature back to work weather, depressing! Low pressure over the Great Lakes will very slowly move across New England through the middle portion of the week. Today will see increasing clouds with muggy weather and highs near 26C. Rain will develop tonight from southwest to northeast across the entire region and become heavy at times. The rain will continue into Tuesday with as much as 25-50mm (1-2 inches) forecast. Temperatures will be very cool on Tuesday with a brisk northeast wind only 15C. The balance of the week looks unsettled with showers and maybe a thunderstorm, it will be seasonable with high in the low 20's. The weekend at this time looks much better, sunshine and highs around 25C.

Friday, June 07, 2013

A visit from Andrea on the Seacoast today

From ValleyWX: The surf is on the rise tonight along North Hampton Beach, NH. Andrea will bring rain tonight but move rapidly away on Saturday.
Sadly, today was my last full day here at the beach in New Hampshire, boy does time fly. Our last day was spent taking a cruise to the offshore Isle of Shoals. It was not the best day with rain and rising waves, but enjoyable just the same. The islands are about six miles out in the North Atlantic, and have stood the test of time, deeply rooted in history with lots of weather. It was appropriate that I went out on the northern edge of a post-tropical storm. It was not that bad, but as I write, the surf is rising with heavy rain moving in from the south here in Hampton Beach. Local forecasters have a flood watch in effect for up to three inches of rain overnight as Andrea moves northeast just off the coast. Winds will increase up to 25mph here, but the strongest winds will remain over the open waters and along Cape Cod.

I paid a visit to the Isle of Shoals today, six miles off the New Hampshire coast in the North Atlantic. This lighthouse on White Island has stood the test of time.
Andrea is moving rapidly northeast at 35mph with 45mph winds. The center is located northeast of Norfolk, VA. Along the path heavy rain, flooding and tornadoes have been a problem. Miami had over 13.5 inches of rain today with major flash flooding. Andrea will brush Cape Cod and then head across Nova Scotia into Newfoundland by Sunday. Warnings for 40-60mm of rain and 100km/h winds are widespread across Atlantic Canada.

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Tropical Storm Andrea

Forecast path of Andrea from Florida up into North Carolina and beyond into Nova Scotia.
Tropical storm Andrea has developed in the Gulf of Mexico and is heading for south Florida. The storm has 60 mph winds, but she will mainly be a big rain maker with a few tornadoes over Florida and the Carolinas. Rainfall amounts in excess of 5 inches are possible in south Florida with 3-5 inches along the path from Florida to the Outer Banks. Further north heavy rain will move into New York and southern New England and here on the Seacoast of New Hampshire by late Friday as the storm becomes non tropical in nature. From 1-3 inches is likely here with some rough surf but only 15-25mph winds here. Interior New England and southern Quebec will remain on the west side of the remains of Andrea with clouds but little else. Any rain in Montreal will be from low pressure moving from the Great Lakes east. The storm will bring heavy rain to Nova Scotia by Saturday with warnings possible.

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Tropical trouble for Florida & East Coast?

It is another spectacular day here on the New Hampshire Seacoast, a little cooler than I like but nice nonetheless. Temperatures as with the rest of New England, Quebec and Ontario have come back down to reality, if not below normal from the high heat of this past weekend. Under clear skies, lows have dropped into the single digits in southern Quebec, and remained below 20C for highs. The nice weather is about to end for all of us as low pressure moves from the Great Lakes to the Middle Atlantic coast by Thursday. There it may deepen in response to a tropical system trying to get organized in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico. If the system develops it would be called Andrea. At this time rain is forecast for the weekend across our region, and it could be heavy at times. Flooding is a real threat in New England.We will know more in the next 24 hours.

In other weather news, the El Reno Oklahoma tornado that struck last Friday was upgraded to an EF-5 after ground data confirmed winds of 295 mph, the second highest ever recorded. Also the NWS noted the path was as wide as 2.5 miles, the largest in US history. The storm claimed at least 16 lives including 4 storm chasers.

Just one of the homes damaged after powerful winter storms in March on Plum Island. I took the photo yesterday while repairs were going on to other homes on the beach. (ValleyWX Photo)
Plum Island, Mass
I visited Plum Island on the northeast Massachusetts coast yesterday. It was the first time I had been since last fall and since the big Nor'Easters of this past March. The storms wiped out beach and dunes, destroying or severely damaging several homes on the Island, damage that is still very evident today. I viewed a beautiful but shortened and steep beach with cinder blocks in the surf and even a stereo unit. The damage set off a debate between home owners and the authorities as to how to protect some of the remaining homes that sit precariously on the edge of the surf. The island is stunning and home to Parker River National Wildlife Reserve. I can understand completely the desire to keep and protect your little corner of this place. We love coming here and I hope they can come to an agreement to help preserve the island and save their homes.

Monday, June 03, 2013

Veteran storm chasers killed

The Weather Channel storm chasing truck was destroyed in El Reno, Oklahoma on Friday. Thankfully Mike Bettes and crew survived.
By now most of us in the weather community are well aware of the tornadoes that hit Oklahoma on Friday, just another destructive round of weather in what has been a terrible month. The death toll stands at 16 from this outbreak adding to that from the Moore storm two weeks ago. What many of you may not know is that we lost a veteran storm chaser, a well respected scientist, Tim Samaras in the EF-3 El Reno, Oklahoma storm. The violent storm trapped many in traffic on area highways. Also taken were Tim's son Paul and chaser Carl Young. They will be missed terribly and my thoughts and prayers go out to the their families. The Weather Channel crew from Tornado Hunt 2013 was caught in the same storm and their vehicle was rolled several times into a field off the interstate. The driver suffered serious injuries while miraculously Mike Bettes and the others in the truck received cuts and scrapes. Bettes, interviewed on TWC, has said they were on the dreaded north side of the storm trying to get away. The violent tornadoes just caught them, they needed 30 seconds more according to Bettes.

New Hampshire
Yesterday was another hot day here on the New Hampshire Seacoast as it was all across the northeast and into southern Quebec. Temperatures here were over 90F for the third day in a row. Meanwhile, a strong but slow moving cold front produced over 30mm of rain in Montreal. This morning the rain has finally reached us here on the coast. The storms yesterday across Vermont knocked down trees and power lines. Skies will slowly clear in Montreal today with clear and cooler weather, 19 to 21C into Thursday before more clouds and showers.

June 1st was the start of hurricane season, which goes through to November 30. Already forecasters are watching the tropics for possible development of a depression in the Gulf of Mexico this week. If it develops the storm would be called Andrea, and it may move towards Florida by the middle of the week. More on that later, but for now bye from the beach. Remember a rainy day at the beach is still better than a sunny day at work!