Don’t let the calendar fool you – a bitter sweet transition to spring is expected. The final two weeks of winter will feature drastic temperature swings and at least one notable storm system this weekend.
An area of low-pressure will form lee of the Rockies in Colorado Friday. Deepening as it tracks northeastwards through the United States towards the Great Lakes Region Saturday evening.
Key Details: 15-25mm of rain across deep Southwestern Ontario & North of Lake Erie. Rain combined with snow-melt may lead to localized flooding. 10-20cm of snow for Northern Ontario. Heaviest snow falling East of Lake Superior & across the Nickel Belt. Strong to damaging wind gusts for Southwestern & Central Ontario. A surge of warm air in Southern Ontario precedes wrap around strong winds & snow
SNOW FOR NORTHERN ONTARIO
Like many of the storms this season, this system will feature appreciable snow across Northern Ontario. A large swath of 10-15cm is forecast for Wawa, Timmins and Sudbury areas. Local amounts may approach 20cm.
MESSY WINDSTORM FOR SOUTHERN ONTARIO
First and foremost, this is a messy system for Southern Ontario. Precipitation will move into Windsor in deep Southwestern Ontario around 6pm Saturday. Progressing Northeastwards across Southern Ontario during the evening and overnight. Main concern for along the Lake Erie shoreline will be heavy downpours combined with warmer temperatures, snow melt, and runoff. Minor flooding is possible; stretching into the GTA. Be sure to monitor any statements from your local conservation authority, as we progress through the weekend.
Strong to damaging easterly winds will develop ahead of the storm Saturday evening & overnight. The strongest wind gusts are expected East of Lake Huron. Including Goderich, where peak winds could exceed 100km/h late Saturday evening & overnight. The rest of Southern Ontario will have to contend with strong easterly winds gusting 60-90km/h through the overnight into Sunday morning. Once again, winds will strengthen out of the West Sunday, with the passage of a cold front. Frequent gusts between 50-70km/h is expected.
Considering temperatures will be teetering around the freezing mark, precipitation may begin as snow, freezing rain or ice pellets. Especially, South of Georgian Bay where elevation and heavy precipitation rates will aide in keeping temperatures below freezing for a longer duration. For Eastern Ontario, this system will bring more wet snow than rain. Refer to our forecast map for further details.
Our forecasting team is vigilantly monitoring a powerful low-pressure system expected to form North of the Texas Panhandle late this evening. The upper-level disturbance originating out of California, will coincide with a favorable setup for an explosive storm development. Read more about Panhandle Hooks’ here.
Did you know? It was an infamous Panhandle Hook which sank the SS Edmund Fitzgerald on November 10th, 1975.
This storm will feature strong winds, blizzard conditions, heavy rainfall, thunderstorms, and shifting ice-conditions across the Great Lakes. Almost everyone in Eastern Canada will feel the effects of this powerful storm. Read more to gain insight on how this storm may impact you.
BLOCKBUSTER BLIZZARD EAST OF LAKE SUPERIOR
Our forecast team is closely monitoring a soon-to-be rapidly strengthening Panhandle Hook, sagging into the Texas Panhandle. Gathering abundant gulf moisture before trekking towards the Upper Great Lakes. The storm will experience the most intensification while tracking Northeastwards through the Upper Midwest (United States), towards Lake Superior & Northern Ontario. Coinciding with an expanding strong to damaging wind field.
Confidence is considerable for a high-impact Low for regions N and NE of Lake Superior with likely 30cm or more of blowing snow contingent with 60km/h+ wind gusts. The heaviest snowfall will likely be 30-40km inland from the immediate Lake Superior shoreline. This is bad news (or good new depending on your prerogative), when considering how much snow has already fallen across this region. Some are running out of places to even put the snow.
The fiercest winds will not correspond with the heaviest snowfall rates. Still, inland locales such as Timmins & Kapuskasing will still have to contend with extensive blowing & drifting snow. Especially, once the low tracks into Quebec, with colder air and stronger gusts arriving on the backside of the low.
There will be a line of mixing of wintry precipitation likely from Sault Ste. Marie to Sudbury to the QC border. Including a brief period of ice pellets and rain-showers.
WIDESPREAD DAMAGING WINDS ACROSS SOUTHERN ONTARIO
Temperatures will begin to surge above freezing across Southwestern Ontario, as early as, late Saturday evening. Double-digit temperatures & strong Southwesterly winds will advance throughout the Southern half of the Province throughout the morning & afternoon. Rain-showers and even a risk of elevated thunderstorms is expected. Proceeded by, a sharp cold front & plummeting temperatures.
We anticipate extensive blowing snow and poor-visibility East of Lake Huron late Sunday evening through Monday. Avoid all unnecessary travel in the red highlighted area on our wind impact map.
The supportive track and strength of the low will herald in a significant damaging wind threat across Southern Ontario. The strongest winds could peak as high as hurricane force (120km/h), along the Northeast shore of Lake Erie. We anticipate wind gusts over 100km/h across Prince Edward County, and East of Lake Huron. Peak wind gusts will likely reach or exceed 90km/h across the rest of Southern Ontario.
The sudden onset of warm air, rainfall, and extreme wind gusts will bring treacherous ice conditions across the Great Lakes. Ice shoves may be damaging to infrastructure along exposed shorelines. If you participate in winter activities such as, ice fishing or snowmobiling, it would be a good idea to remove your ice hut from the Great Lakes. Avoid snowmobiling until ice conditions improve.
A NEW COASTAL LOW BOMBS OUT AS IT TRACKS THROUGH THE MARITIMES
The powerful storm sweeps through Quebec on Sunday, and will subsequently phase into a strong ‘weather bomb’ south of Yarmouth. Potentially, deepening below 970mb (967-969mb).
While the exact phasing & extend of warm air advection is not entirely set-in-stone, it appears the heaviest swaths of snowfall will likely be off the Gaspe Peninsula shoreline and into the North Atlantic, thereby mitigating what could have been 2 or more feet of snow.
Southern New Brunswick will likely experience a rain/snow/wintry mix. With amounts totaling near 10cm. Amounts increasing to 20-30cm across the Northern extent of the Province. Pockets of heavier enhancement, accompanied by similar conditions is expected across Extreme Southern Newfoundland
Timing Western New Brunswick – Late Afternoon Sunday Most of New Brunswick – Sunday Evening Nova Scotia – Sunday Mid Evening PEI – Sunday Overnight Newfoundland – Monday
Hardest Hit Gaspe (35-45cm) Bathurst (25-35cm) Edmundston (30-35cm) Campbellton (30-35cm) Extreme Southern Shoreline of Newfoundland (25-40cm)
DANGEROUS BLIZZARD CONDITIONS STRETCH FROM JAMES BAY THROUGH NORTHERN QUEBEC
A major blizzard is on-tap for much of Northern Quebec. The worst of the treacherous conditions will be felt across the mouth of the Rupert River, Southeast of James Bay. Where rural communities can expect winds over 90km/h combined with 15-25cm of freshly fallen snow. Extensive blowing/drifting snow & near-zero visibility is expected. Isolated communities across Central & Northern Quebec may become cut-off, briefly.
A system developing in the Southeastern United States will track up the Eastern Seaboard this weekend, becoming a weather story across Eastern Canada.
A developing coastal system will bring a wintery mix across Southern Ontario, Quebec, and Northern New Brunswick.
A boundary will form in Southern Ontario between a cold & dry high-pressure system, and moist air arriving from the Southeast. Colder air will overspread Southern Ontario and Southern Quebec Saturday, owing to a cold Northeasterly wind. Concurrently, a large area of precipitation will push north into Southern Quebec and Southern Ontario.
Snow, mixing, rain and freezing rain is expected from Saturday morning to Sunday evening. Flurries will continue through Monday.
Across, Nova Scotia, PEI and much of New Brunswick will see primarily rain. Although, Northern New Brunswick could remain as a mix or snow depending on the track of the developing system.
Many residents East of Highway 6 and across the GTA have started the day with moderate wet snow.
A cold northeasterly wind will reinforce colder air by Saturday evening. Mixing or rain-showers will transition into a wintery mix of wet snow & ice pellets east of Highway 6, along/north of highway 407/7. Continuing through much of Central and Eastern Ontario (away from the lake shore). A few wet centimetres is possible. Especially for municipalities at higher elevation South and East of Georgian Bay. Please plan accordingly, as conditions will deteriorate through the day Saturday.
MARITIMES: Strong Winds & Heavy Rainfall
This system will be a rain and wind story across much of the Maritimes. The strongest winds, with gusts between 80-90km/h, will be located across the Bay of Fundy. Elsewhere winds across much of Nova Scotia, PEI and New Brunswick are expected to be gusting between 50-70km/h Sunday morning. Total rainfall amounts between 20-50mm is expected by Sunday afternoon. The heaviest rain falling in Southern New Brunswick and coastal Nova Scotia. Across Northern New Brunswick, a period of snow and mixing may persist into the overnight.
Flurries will begin north of the St. Lawrence Saturday evening. Montreal, and the Eastern Townships will likely changeover to rain late Saturday evening/overnight, with the arrival of warmer air.
For regions north of the St. Lawrence, this will be a snow and ice story. Stay tuned to further forecasts Saturday night through Sunday morning, this region could see a 5-8 hour window for freezing rain.