June 2010 – The spring of our discontent

A rare sunny day in Moncton, 28 June 2011

Clouds, rain, drizzle, clouds, rain drizzle and repeat. 

Although it wasn’t overally wet last month in Greater Moncton, it was wet on all but 8 days during June.

Clouds kept preventing heat from building causing a drop in the average monthly temperature of more than 1.0 C.

A terrible end to spring and a worrisome beginning to summer.

JUNE 2011 ALMANAC

Average HIGH  18.9 C

Average LOW  9.1 C

AVERAGE  14.0 C (1.1 C below normal compared to 30-year average)

Extreme HIGH  27.8 C (on the 28th)

Extreme LOW  3.8 C (on the 11th

Rainfall  76.6 mm (about 15% below normal)

Cursing the clouds!

Clouds roll in over NE Moncton, 24 June 11

This is the main reason why it has been so chilly in Greater Moncton and SE New Brunswick over the past couple of months – clouds.

Today was no exception as a ridge of cloudiness moved from west to east across Moncton early this evening which is expected to bring yet another wet weekend to the region.

To my recollection, Greater Moncton has had only one sunny Saturday (two weeks ago) in at least two months.

To date, average daily temperatures for June are running at least 2 degrees Celsius below normal.

Soaked in Saskatchewan!

Friday forecast for SK, 24 June 11 (TWN)

When you think of Saskatchewan you normally think dry but that hasn’t been the case this spring and in many cases the province has been soaked for weeks.

For example, the city of Estevan has already had almost a year’s worth of rain –  324 mm since May 1st versus 333 mm annually.

Almost 1,000 residents of southern Saskatchewan have been forced from their homes due to severe flooding in the past week.

The influx of water is also having an impact in the neighbouring U.S. state of North Dakota – more than 11,000 people in Minot have been evacuated as water from the Souris River spills over dikes.

Summer arrives!

Sunrise at Stonehenge, UK 21 June 2005 (Wikipedia)

After a dull and rainy spring in Greater Moncton, high hopes are now upon summer which officially begins today in the Northern Hemisphere.

At 2:16 ADT, the sun will reach its most northern point in the sky, the summer solstice.

The northern axis of the earth is actually tilted towards the sun giving us more daylight hours than we would see in the winter.

During the winter, the northern axis is pointed away from the sun giving us shorter days and offering less heat.

More severe weather in SE NB

Heavy downpour and hail, NE Moncton, 20 June 11

New Brunswick has had its share of severe thunderstorms this spring in a region not especially known for them.

A series of severe storms rolled through Greater Moncton yesterday and at times dropped pea-sized hail over the area along with rolling thunder and lightning.

No major incidents were reported although there were some troublesome flash flood areas in the city.

Severe storm impacts SE NB

A light show over Moncton 09 June 11 (TWN)

A severe thunderstorm caused some localized flooding in Greater Moncton last night but public works officials say no major problems have been reported.

Environment Canada had issued a severe thunderstorm warning for Southeast New Brunswick last night after a brief storm rolled though the region.

About 22 mm of rain was recorded at the Greater Moncton Airport.

Some areas lost power as well due to high winds and lightning strikes.

NB Power says at the peak outage earlier today, more than 3,000 customers in Kent County were in the dark.

The outage forced the closure of two schools in St. Louis-de-Kent today.

Alberta snow in June!

Snow in Grande Prairie, AB 03 June 11

As if Alberta hasn’t taken enough abuse from Mother Nature this spring, now comes snow in June.

About 2 cm of wet snow fell in Grande Prairie and snow fell in other parts of central and northern Alberta yesterday and today as well.

If anything, the needed moisture will help firefighters battling forest fires including one which devastated the town of Slave Lake last month.

Intense thunderstorm hits NB, NS

Lightning near Halifax, NS 01 Jun 11 (CTV)

Hundreds of lightning strikes and long periods of rolling thunder were recorded across Southeastern New Brunswick and Nova Scotia last night after cold, continental air from the north collided with warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico.

Weather officials say the number of lightning strikes in the region was remarkable given that few electrical storms are recorded here in a given year.

The fast moving system, which also impacted New England earlier in the day (see previous blog entry), knocked out power to homes and businesses and forced two schools near Moncton to close today.

Deadly tornadoes in Massachusetts

Downtown Springfield, Mass., USA 02 June 11 (AP)

At least four people are believed dead following a series of tornadoes that ripped through much of Massachusetts yesterday.

The rare twisters destroyed dozens of homes and businesses in Springfield, the state’s third largest city.

Officials say residents were given just 10 minutes warning of a possible tornado and the state’s governor says it’s a miracle more weren’t injured or killed.

Tornadoes are relatively rare in New England but one that hit Worcester, Massachusetts in 1953, killed 94 and injured more than 1,000.

Lilacs in bloom!

Lilacs in bloom (file)

My favourite flowering shrub is the lilac and lilac season has arrived once again in Southeastern New Brunswick.

Commonly found in temperate zones throughout the world, the cold spring has delayed the lilac here by at least 1-2 weeks compared to the average year.

The wonderful fragrance coming from the beautiful purple lilac is a sure sign that spring is in full bloom.