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
Sunset at Parlee Beach, NB, 18 July 2017 (Dearing)
Late July is typically the warmest period of summer in Greater Moncton but a recent cool down has brought September-like days and a record overnight low.
On 23 July, the temperature fell to 6.9 C at the Greater Moncton International Airport which broke a record low of 7.2 C from 1962.
A frost advisory was posted in northwest New Brunswick with a chilly low of 2.4 C in Edmundston.
The short term forecast calls for more seasonal highs in the mid-20’s C and lows near 13 C.
Heavy rain during thunderstorm in NE Moncton, 21 July 2017 (Dearing)
The temperature climbed to 30 C for three days in a row in Greater Moncton which is an unofficial heat wave since 32 C is the maximum by definition.
Those warm daytime highs, 30.4 C (19 July), 30.4 C (20 July) and 30.0 C (21 July), still haven’t eclipsed the season-to-date maximum of 30.8 C recorded on 11 June.
A cold front moved west to east through New Brunswick yesterday triggering scattered thunderstorms with heavy rain, gusty winds and even hail.
The heat and humidity have been replaced by a cooler, drier air mass with highs in the low 20’s C which is slightly below normal for late July.
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.
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.
Cherry blossoms in Vancouver,BC,15 April 2017 (CityofVancouver/Twitter)
Canada’s so-called Left Coast may have the mildest winters in the country but along with that comes a lot of cloudy skies and precipitation mostly falling as rain.
After a colder and snowier than usual winter, Vancouver experienced a gloomy March with the least amount of sunshine since records began in 1951 and it rained 28 out of 31 days.
So it’s no wonder, the sight of beautiful pink and white cherry blossoms is causing traffic troubles with so many drivers and pedestrians stopping to admire them.
The peak bloom is a bit later than normal this year thanks to dismal weather causing the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival to reschedule some events.
Cherry blossoms in bloom, Washington, DC, USA, 02 March 2017 (Instagram)
During January and February, the city of Chicago only had a few centimetres of snow with no measurable amount on the ground for the first time in 146 years.
Record highs were broken from New England to Texas where temperatures recently soared into the high 20’s C causing trees and flowers to bloom ahead of schedule.
The cherry blossoms in Washington, DC could reach their peak on 14 March which would be the earliest.since officials began keeping track in 1921.
Climatologists say much of the central and eastern United States had a very warm winter with February 2017 being the second warmest in 123 years of records.
UPDATE – The cherry blossoms in Washington, DC actually reached their peak on 25 March after being delayed by a cold snap and snow.
The snowbanks keep getting higher in NW Moncton, 16 Feb 2017 (Facebook)
An intense low pressure system tracked across the Maritimes today bringing heavy snow along with strong northerly winds creating blowing and drifting snow.
Environment Canada says this was the fourth storm system to impact Greater Moncton and Southeast New Brunswick over the last two weeks.
Visibility was often very poor and the New Brunswick Emergency Measures Organization restricted travel to snow plows and emergency vehicles on many major highways today.
Greater Moncton: 35 cm
Saint John: 25 cm
Fredericton: 20 cm
Charlottetown: 15 cm
Greenwood, NS: 40 cm
Halifax Stanfield Airport: 15 cm
NB daytime highs from Environment Canada, 14 July 2016
Greater Moncton has yet to reach 30 C this summer but warm, breezy conditions pushed the daytime high to 29 C today with winds gusting up to 72 km/h.
Many other New Brunswick locations surpassed 30 C with Bathurst climbing to 33 C which was the hot spot in Canada.
Temperatures were cooler along the Fundy coast with a maximum of 20 C in Saint John and 23.4 C on Grand Manan Island.
A view of Percé Rock, Quebec, 09 July 2016 (Dearing)
Some claimed it was time to haul out the parkas again after five straight days with daytime highs failing to reach 20 C in Greater Moncton.
Keep in mind the average early July high is 25 C and recent daily maximums were barely climbing to 15 C.
Data shows this has been the coolest stretch in July in many years.
But grey skies are finally clearing and Environment Canada is forecasting highs at or slightly above normal over the next few days.