October 2014 – Warm and relatively wet

Fairview Knoll Park, Moncton, NB, 04 Oct 2014 (Dearing)

Fairview Knoll Park, Moncton, NB, 04 Oct 2014 (Dearing)

October 2014 definitely proved to be warmer than normal in Greater Moncton with the monthly temperature about 2.1°C above the 30-year average.

Generally speaking the month was mostly dry except for three rain events on 08 Oct, 17 Oct and an extended wet period thanks to a slow moving Nor’easter from 22-26 October.

The temperature fell below freezing only once at -1.1°C on 21 Oct which produced a light freeze but not a killing frost and not a single snowflake was recorded during the month.

OCTOBER 2014 ALMANAC (at the Greater Moncton International Airport 1981-2010)

Average HIGH 14.4°C

Average LOW 5.0°C

AVERAGE 9.7°C (about 2.1°C ABOVE the 30-year average)

Extreme HIGH 23.7°C (15 Oct)

Extreme LOW -1.1°C (21 Oct)

Rainfall 117.0 mm (slightly ABOVE the 30-year average)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

Nor’easter to bring rain, wind and snow?

650x366_10301932_hd31-1Social media was abuzz this week over the first snowflakes of the season appearing in the long-range forecast for New Brunswick.

Environment Canada has issued as special weather statement for the province indicating a complex low pressure system will bring rain and possible snow with cold northeast winds.

Accuweather seems to suggest Greater Moncton will get mostly rain but an accumulation of snow is possible over the northwestern part of the province.

Brief warm up for N.B. then snow?

Some leaves hang on, northwest Moncton, 28 Oct 2014 (Dearing)

Some leaves hang on, northwest Moncton, 28 Oct 2014 (Dearing)

After almost a week, the rain has finally stopped in Greater Moncton and southerly air will boost temperatures to almost 20 C over the next couple days.

But after the brief warm up, daytime highs will tumble this weekend as a cold front pushes into the Maritimes.

Environment Canada and several other weather outlets say we will likely see our first snowflakes of the season and possible accumulation in northwestern New Brunswick.

Dark, damp and dismal days

Trees now bearing fewer leaves at Fairview Knoll Park, Moncton, NB, 26 October 2014 (Dearing)

Trees now bearing fewer leaves at Fairview Knoll Park, Moncton, NB, 26 October 2014 (Dearing)

Forecasters are calling this slow-moving system a Nor’easter which has been lingering in Southeast New Brunswick since Wednesday.

Winds have not really been a factor in Greater Moncton but the region has received almost 65 mm of rain over the past few days – the October average is 112 mm.

Some localized flooding has occurred especially where fallen leaves are blocking storm drains and hydroplaning is a factor if you are a motorist.

Greater Moncton dips below freezing

A frosty morning in Greater Moncton (courtesy TWN)

A frosty morning in Greater Moncton (courtesy TWN)

For the first time since late May, the thermometer dropped below the freezing point in Greater Moncton this morning to -1.1 C.

Frost was widespread although hardier vegetation appears to have been spared.

For 2014, this means Greater Moncton had above freezing temperatures for 144 days which is slightly longer than the average growing season.

Precipitation remains below normal so far this autumn but that could change with Environment Canada predicting 50-100 mm of rain across New Brunswick over the next few days.

Gonzalo gives Newfoundland a fast punch

Police car wades through street flooding in St. John's, NL, 19 Oct 2014 (CP)

Police car wades through street flooding in St. John’s, NL, 19 Oct 2014 (CP)

Hurricane Gonzalo passed about 50 km south of Cape Race, Newfoundland as a Category 1 storm near dawn this morning.

The Canadian Hurricane Centre noted strong winds gusting up to 100 km/h were reported at Cape Race with higher gusts in the Grand Banks which created 5-12 metre waves along the Atlantic coast.

Flash flooding was reported across the Avalon Peninsula with 50-60 mm of rain falling in St. John’s over just a few hours.

The fast moving Gonzalo, which passed directly over Bermuda on Friday as a Category 4 storm, is now a post-tropical system heading toward the United Kingdom.

Record highs as Gonzalo approaches

Hopewell Cape, NB, 13 Oct 2014 (Dearing)

Hopewell Cape, NB, 13 Oct 2014 (Dearing)

Forecasters say a warm air mass over the Maritimes responsible for record highs over the past couple days is being held in place by the approaching Hurricane Gonzalo.

Greater Moncton set a new record high of 23.7 C for 15 October beating the old record of 21.7 C from 1943.

Although expected to have little impact on New Brunswick, Gonzalo may brush eastern Nova Scotia and eastern Newfoundland as a strong post-tropical storm this weekend.

In the meantime, the Category 3 storm is expected to hit the tiny British territory of Bermuda by mid-Friday.

Strong storm batters N.S.W. Australia

Lithgow, New South Wales, Australia, 14 Oct 2014 (Twitter)

Lithgow, New South Wales, Australia, 14 Oct 2014 (Twitter)

A slow-moving storm system dumped more than 100 mm of rain on Sydney in just a matter of hours causing flash flooding along with rare spring snow in the nearby Blue Mountains.

Up to 20 cm of snow fell in many locations on higher elevations west of Sydney.

Powerful winds gusting up to 105 km/h at Sydney Airport and as high as 161 km/h along the beaches knocked out power to tens of thousands.

Record heat possible in N.B.

Hopewell Cape, NB, 13 Oct 2014 (Dearing)

Hopewell Cape, NB, 13 Oct 2014 (Dearing)


A warm air mass with a southerly circulation has pushed temperatures into the 20s Celsius across New Brunswick.

Temperatures approached record highs today and could break records tomorrow if the thermometer climbs into the high 20s.

In Greater Moncton today the high was 21.0 C while the record was 23.0 C from 1983 while tomorrow (15 Oct) the record of 21.7 C from 1943 could easily be beat.

Scattered frost across New Brunswick

Maple tree showing its fall colours, Fairview Knoll Park, Moncton, NB, 04 Oct 2014 (Dearing)

Maple tree showing its fall colours, Fairview Knoll Park, Moncton, NB, 04 Oct 2014 (Dearing)

Temperatures were cold enough this morning to produce scattered frost in my northeast Moncton neighbourhood.

But it was not a killing frost and many of my patio flowers and planters are still doing well.

At the Greater Moncton International Airport, the thermometer fell to 1.7 C and many other New Brunswick communities recorded low single digits with the coldest at Edmundston falling to -0.4 C.