Meteorological spring in Southeast New Brunswick turned out to be colder and much wetter than normal compared to the 30-year average.
While March and April both had above normal temperatures, May was colder by a significant 2.4 degrees which brought down the overall seasonal average.
Rainfall was heavy in April and May and while snowfall was below normal for the three month period, the final snow flurries were spotted as late as 21 May.
After a cold and wet spring in New Brunswick, what will summer be like?
The Weather Network has unveiled its summer 2019 forecast and if you were hoping for warmer temperatures, it appears you may have to wait a little longer.
TWN suggests the season will be changeable and humid with cool weather in June but warmer than normal temperatures arriving in July stretching into August.
Extended periods of dry weather could lead to short term drought in parts of the Maritimes but overall precipitation will likely be near normal.
What about the spring 2019 forecast from The Weather Network?
TWN noted a cold wave in early March would be followed by a warmer pattern later in the month with more consistent spring-like weather by early April.
Both temperatures and precipitation were expected to be near normal.
So was the seasonal forecast accurate?
While early March was cold in Greater Moncton with a bitter low of -20.1 C, a warmer pattern never really developed except for a brief shot of warmth at month end.
April had some warmth in the middle but that fizzled near the end and while May started off strong, a cold pattern held steady for the second half of the month.
Precipitation was below seasonal in March, well above average in April and slightly above normal for May.
Temperatures are finally starting to climb into the double digits here in Southeast New Brunswick but when will it reach the 20°C benchmark?
Since 2014 (see above chart), the average date in Greater Moncton has ranged from mid-April to early May although in 2012 it was in late March.
In other words, it could reach 20°C very soon.
However, Environment Canada’s five-day forecast shows a cool down coming and a high no greater than 14°C expected.
Meteorologists have said a temperature anomaly of more than 2 C is considered significant – but how about 14.4 C above normal for March 2019!
Inuvik, Northwest Territories – above the Arctic Circle – was the hotspot in Canada’s far north last month.
A warm air mass has surged into Western Canada this week bringing record temperatures to the region and also to the North.
Many communities from Yukon to Nunavut were well above freezing and into the double digits breaking March records.
Yohin Lake hit a record high of 18.8°C Monday and spiked to 20.2°C Tuesday marking the first time in March the thermometer has climbed above 20°C in Northwest Territories.
Daytime highs in British Columbia’s Fraser Valley hit the mid 20’s while Alberta residents enjoyed maximums in the high teens.
Tracks on frozen reservoir in Irishtown Nature Park, Moncton, 10 March 2019 (Dearing)
For the first time in 12 days, the daytime high in Greater Moncton finally climbed above freezing with a balmy high of 1°C today!
The normal maximum for early March in Southeast New Brunswick is 2°C with a minimum of -8°C.
The last third of winter has been especially cold with overnights consistently below -10°C and even as low as -20.1°C early Friday.
However, there is some good news – Environment Canada is forecasting that the next five out of six days will have highs above freezing.
The Weather Network has unveiled its spring 2019 forecast covering March, April and May – so what can New Brunswick expect?
It’s been a long, cold and stormy winter which began in mid-November but TWN believes after another cold wave in early March, a warmer pattern will develop later in the month.
Meteorologist Michael Carter says more consistent spring-like weather is possible by early April.
Both temperatures and precipitation are expected to be near normal for the season.
Carter adds flooding is a possibility given normal spring run-off combined with any rain or snow that falls.
But he thinks it won’t be as stormy this spring compared to past years.
Dorchester Beach, NB, 17 June 2018 (Dearing)
Spring had its inevitable ups and downs in Southeast New Brunswick but overall the average temperature was close to normal for March, April and May.
March was very stormy with a parade of Nor’easters which led to the highest snow depth of the winter in Greater Moncton by the end of the month.
April was slightly colder than normal with chilly nights until mid-month and the last measurable snow fell on the 21st.
May had slightly above normal temperatures overall thanks to 14 days with daytime highs of 20 C or more but nights remained cold with single digit lows.
So far this June, the mean temperature is running three degrees below average with a hard frost on the 4th which was the coldest minimum since 16 April.
METEOROLOGICAL SPRING at the Greater Moncton International Airport
Average -1.7 C (1.2 degrees ABOVE normal)
Snowfall: well above normal, Rainfall: well below normal
Average 3.2 C (0.3 degrees BELOW normal)
Snowfall: below normal, Rainfall: above normal
Average 10.3 C (0.3 degrees ABOVE normal)
Rainfall: below normal, Snowfall: nil
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.
Whiteout conditions during a winter storm, west end Moncton, 08 March 2018 (Dearing)
Although March came in like a lamb, it behaved like a lion in the days to follow with four Nor’easters over two weeks in Southeast New Brunswick.
The first storm brought 15 cm, the second and third storms each delivered 16 cm and the fourth packed the biggest punch with 30 cm.
By 23 March, the snow cover in Greater Moncton had reached 40 cm which was the heaviest of the winter even though it was already spring.
Temperatures during the first half were mild averaging near the freezing point with brief cold snaps around the middle and near the end of the month.
MARCH 2018 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)
Average HIGH 1.3 C
Average LOW -4.7 C
AVERAGE -1.7 C (about 1.2 degrees ABOVE normal)
Extreme HIGH 9.1 C (29 Mar)
Extreme LOW -15.4 C (26 Mar)
RAINFALL 11.0 mm (almost 80 percent BELOW normal)
SNOWFALL 102.3 cm (about 40 percent ABOVE normal)
(Data courtesy Environment Canada)