Thunderstorms roll across N.B.

Ominous clouds over downtown Moncton, 21 June 2017 (Dearing)


The passage of a cold front created thunderstorms across New Brunswick yesterday from west to east. 

A brief storm cell moved through Greater Moncton late in the afternoon with ominous clouds and a short downpour. 

The cold front has been replaced by cooler, drier air today with a seasonable high of 22 C today in Southeast New Brunswick. 

First day of summer 2017

The boardwalk to Kellys Beach at Kouchibouguac National Park, NB, 18 June 2017 (Dearing)


Summer officially arrived in New Brunswick today at 1:24am. 

This is the longest day of the year at 15 hours and 46 minutes in Greater Moncton. 

The sun has reached its northernmost point over the Tropic of Cancer and now begins moving southward which will gradually shorten days. 

The solstice is celebrated in Stonehenge, England where the U.K. Met Office says a record high today of 32.3 C near Gatwick Airport is the warmest first day of summer ever. 

Sizzling heat in Southwest U.S.

vegasheat20june

Children play at a water park in Las Vegas, NV, USA, 20 June 2017 (Las Vegas Review-Journal)

Excessive heat warnings have been posted in parts of California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico where record highs have been broken.

Las Vegas tied its record today of 47 C and Phoenix came close to its all-time high at 48 C.

Many flights have been delayed or cancelled since smaller jets can’t operate properly in dangerously hot conditions.

Temperatures have soared to 53 C in Death Valley, California which climbed to 56.7 C on 10 July 1913 – the hottest ever in North America.

Forest fire tragedy in Portugal

Portugalfire18June17

Burnt cars block a road in the Pedrogao Grande area, Portugal, 18 June 2017 (AP/Armando Franca)

A massive forest fire in central Portugal has claimed more than 60 lives and injured dozens of others with hot, windy conditions fanning the flames.

Many died in their vehicles trying to flee the blaze while others died from smoke inhalation.

Portugal has declared three days of mourning in what has been called the worst human tragedy in recent times.

More than 2,000 firefighters are on the scene with help coming from Spain and across Europe.

Officials believe lightning started the fire on Saturday in the mountainous area of Pedrogao Grande, northeast of Lisbon.

Heat comes to abrupt end

Thunderstorm moves into Saint John, 12 June 2017 (AKS/Twitter)


After three days of daytime highs above 28 C in Greater Moncton, much cooler weather is coming thanks to a cold front and a change in wind direction. 

The warm sometimes unstable air mass has created severe thunderstorms across the region.

Flash flooding was reported in Saint John yesterday after heavy downpours with wind and and hail which were also observed today in northeastern Nova Scotia. 

Environment Canada is forecasting below seasonal temperatures for Southeast New Brunswick over the next couple of days. 

Back to the Beach

Aboiteau Beach, Cap-Pele, NB, 11 June 2017 (Dearing)


Although I walked along Parlee Beach earlier this spring, my first official beach day of the season was a visit to Aboiteau Beach in Cap-Pele yesterday. 

Under a mostly sunny sky, the afternoon high soared above 30 C although the water of the Northumberland Strait was a lot cooler. 

Signage indicated the water quality was good for swimming. 

The only minor downside was the wind which at times gusted to more than 80 km/h creating mini sand storms on the beach. 

Heavy rain, wind after record highs

WIndMoncton09June17

Tree downed in key intersection of downtown Moncton, 09 June 2017 (Wade Perry/Twitter)

A low pressure system moved into the Maritimes today bringing up to 40 mm of rain to Greater Moncton.

A strong thunderstorm also rolled through Southeast New Brunswick in the early evening with wind speeds clocked as high as 102 km/h.

The brief but powerful gusts downed trees and branches onto power lines and caused thousands of power outages.

Environment Canada had not issued any weather warnings for the region.

The storm replaced a warm air mass which set record highs in at least four New Brunswick communities yesterday.

The hotspot was Kouchibouguac National Park which climbed to 32 C and that beats the maximum from 1992.

Moncton and Doaktown both tied their record highs of 30.6 C for the date.

Warmer weather ushers out cold

Brilliant pink sky over NE Moncton, 06 June 2017 (Dearing)


At least one New Brunswick location dropped to a new low on 06 June.

Environment Canada says Kouchibouguac National Park set a new cold record of -1.7 C which broke the old minimum of -1.1 C from 1958.

Greater Moncton managed to escape frost this week thanks to cloud cover although the thermometer fell to the freezing point tying a record low.

Following a brief period of very warm air, forecasters say temperatures will reach near seasonal values for the short term.

Near record cold in N.B.

A break in clouds over the Nova Scotia-New Brunswick border, 03 June 2017 (Dearing)

The last couple of days had near record lows in Greater Moncton with temperatures dropping to near the freezing point.

A low of 1.0 C at the airport on Monday was close to the 1947 record of 0.6 C while a low of 0.0 C on Tuesday tied the minimum from 1995.

Fortunately cloud cover prevented frost in most of New Brunswick but another risk is possible by early Wednesday.

Folklore suggests frost can be expected until the full moon in June which is this Friday the ninth.

Cool, unsettled start to June

Ominous clouds near Nova Scotia-New Brunswick border, 03 June 2017 (Dearing)

Weather conditions have been cool and unsettled in the Maritimes over the past several days.

While driving in Nova Scotia on Friday, I encountered everything from clouds and heavy downpours to a clearing sky with bright sunshine to clouds and rain again.

On the way home to New Brunswick on Saturday, I encountered similar conditions.

In Greater Moncton today, the thermometer climbed to a daytime high of only 10.6 C under a dreary sky which is about 10 degrees below normal for early June.

Forecasters say warmer, more seasonal temperatures will return by Wednesday but not before a risk of frost in Southeast New Brunswick by early Tuesday.