Meteorological autumn spanning the months of September, October and November proved to be cooler and much wetter than normal in Greater Moncton.
While September felt more summer-like, it turned decidedly colder by mid-October and a big drop by mid-November with a low within two degrees of a 30-year record.
Precipitation was heavy with more than 100 mm of rain falling above normal and snow first appeared in late October and again in heavy amounts by late November.
Black-eyed Susans growing in Upper Hammonds Plains, NS, 21 Sept 2018 (Dearing)
Warm, summer weather picked up in September where it left off in August in Southeast New Brunswick.
But the passage of a cold front marked a drastic temperature drop on the 18th and suddenly it felt like fall in Greater Moncton.
The thermometer continued to plunge and sank to -1.9°C on the 25th with light, scattered frost although most vegetation was spared severe damage.
Precipitation was actually above normal although heavy amounts fell in a handful of rainfalls.
SEPTEMBER 2018 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)
Average HIGH 20.9°C
Average LOW 7.9°C
AVERAGE 14.4°C (about 0.8 degrees ABOVE normal)
Extreme HIGH 28.9°C (06 Sept)
Extreme LOW -1.9°C (25 Sept)
RAINFALL 100.5 mm (about 10 percent ABOVE normal)
(Data courtesy Environment Canada)
The skyline of Moncton, NB, 16 Sept 2018 (Dearing)
An abrupt change in temperature thanks to a passing cold front turned summer quickly into fall in Greater Moncton this week.
On Tuesday, Environment Canada reports a temperature of 22°C at 11am which plummeted to 16°C by 1pm and the wind direction changed from the southeast to the northwest.
The long, hot summer in New Brunswick was suddenly over.
The daytime high on Wednesday was 13.6°C which was the coolest day since 25 June.
Forecasters are calling for near or slightly below seasonal temperatures until the end of the month (Normal high 18°C, normal low 7°C).
July was a warm month not only in Greater Moncton and New Brunswick but also throughout most of Canada – except for the Far North.
Montreal shattered its monthly record with a mean temperature of 24.1 C – three degrees above normal – and sadly dozens died from not having air conditioning.
Halifax and Toronto were both almost two degrees above normal while Vancouver and Calgary were each more than one degree higher than average.
Even normally cool St. John’s, Newfoundland was 1.6 degrees warmer in July with 15 days reaching daytime highs of 25 C or more.
Only in the Arctic were temperatures lower with Iqaluit, Nunavut nearly one degree below average and Resolute was off by 2.5 degrees – its coldest July since 1964.
Ogilvie Brook, Irishtown Nature Park, 24 June 2018 (Dearing)
Greater Moncton has endured the coolest June in recent memory and while daytime highs were close to normal – with a few exceptions – overnight lows were cold, even frosty at times during the first half of the month.
A hard frost on 04 June with a record breaking low of -3.2 C was devastating for agriculture across New Brunswick especially in the Southeast.
Farmers suffered major damage – in some cases 50 to 80 percent losses – to crops such as grapes, strawberries and blueberries.
Oddly enough, the temperature had not been that low in all of May and not since 16 April had it been at least that cold.
Rainfall was about 60 percent above normal and was confined to a handful of major rain events with nine days being completely dry.
JUNE 2018 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)
Average HIGH 20.3°C
Average LOW 6.6°C
AVERAGE 13.5°C (about 1.7 degrees BELOW normal)
Extreme HIGH 29.7°C (01 June)
Extreme LOW -3.2°C (04 June)
RAINFALL 154.0 mm (about 60 percent ABOVE normal)
(Data courtesy Environment Canada)
A severe thunderstorm rolls through Greater Moncton ahead of warmer weather, 29 June 2018 (Dearing)
At long last, warm weather is finally pushing into New Brunswick after the coldest June in recent memory.
Environment Canada says a warm, humid air mass will settle over the Maritimes this weekend and persist into next week.
Temperatures in the low 30s Celsius are expected with high humidity making it feel much warmer.
Relief will come along coastal areas which can expect slightly cooler conditions.
We are now several weeks into the growing season and temperatures are dropping to dangerously cold lows.
Farmers are concerned about damage to crops after a cool air mass and clear skies led to a frigid low of -4 C in parts of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia overnight.
Greater Moncton dropped to -3.2 C early today which broke the old record of -2.2 C from 1903 and records go back to 1881.
The following new record lows were set on 04 June:
- Kouchibouguac National Park, NB -3.8 C (records since 1924)
- Grand Manan, NB -2.2 C (records since 1883)
- Port Hawkesbury, NS -2.6 C (records since 1875)
- Ingonish, NS -2.2 C (records since 1950)
- Summerside, PEI -1.9 C (records since 1898)
- Charlottetown, PEI -1.0 C (records since 1872)
Spring has sputtered in New Brunswick – it was nowhere to be found in March, finally appeared in late April and although May has had a few warm days, the month is still running slightly below normal in Greater Moncton.
So what about summer?
In its seasonal forecast, the Weather Network believes a cool June should give way to more consistent warm weather during July and August.
A humid summer is expected which may result in warmer than normal temperatures at night – overnight lows average about 12 C.
While periods of dry weather are expected, heavy showers and thunderstorms should bring rain totals to near normal for the season.
Frost covers a maple leaf (Twitter)
When the temperature dropped to -0.3 C early this morning, frost could be found in Greater Moncton.
The coldest low in New Brunswick was -5.9 C at Edmundston!
Thanks to cool, dry air with no cloud cover, Environment Canada has issued another frost advisory for tonight.
But keep in mind it’s not that unusual based on the 30-year average (1981-2010).
The average last spring frost date is 23 May in Greater Moncton and the first fall frost is 2 October for a growing season of 131 days.
Icy road on the Acadian Peninsula, 27 Jan 2017 (Twitter)
Canada had the eighth warmest period in 70 years of reporting weather in 2017, with temperatures averaging 1.4°C above normal.
From a list of 100 significant weather events across the country, Environment Canada picked the top 10 weather stories of the year:
1. Long and destructive summer wildfire season in British Columbia
2. Hot and dry summer in the West from Interior BC to Manitoba
3. Spring flooding in Quebec and Ontario
4. Cold and snowy winter in BC including Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island
5. More heavy rain and flooding in Southwestern Ontario during late August
6. Cool and wet summer in Central Canada
7. Heavy snow cripples Ontario and Quebec in mid-March
8. Record heat across Eastern Canada during September
9. Blizzards hit Newfoundland in March and April
10. Lengthy ice storm impacts New Brunswick in late January