Harvest Moon

The almost Full Harvest Moon over Moncton, NB, 04 Oct 2017

Under a mostly cloudy sky, it was difficult to capture the Full Harvest Moon in most of Southeast New Brunswick but I did manage to get a shot last night.

The Harvest Moon derives its name from when farmers used the moon’s bright light to help them gather crops for winter.

The Harvest Moon is the full moon nearest to the autumnal equinox which occurred on 22 September.

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August 2017 – Dry summer persists

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Extremely dry ground and brown grass in NE Moncton, 30 Aug 2017 (Dearing)

The dry summer in Southeast New Brunswick continued in August with a dangerous forest fire hazard and little precipitation to soak the parched ground.

A dry trend which began in late June continued during the month with less than 50 mm of rain falling in Greater Moncton.

Temperatures were above normal with daytime highs consistently in the high 20’s Celsius but a string of single digit overnight lows during the final week brought down the overall monthly average.

AUGUST 2017 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)

Average HIGH 25.6 C

Average LOW 11.9 C

AVERAGE 18.9 C (about 0.7 degrees ABOVE normal)

Extreme HIGH 30.6 C (04 Aug)

Extreme LOW 7.2 C (28 Aug)

RAINFALL 46.8 mm (about 40 percent BELOW normal)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

Heavy rain, wind after record highs

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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.

Record highs in the Maritimes

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Jones Lake, west end Moncton, 18 May 2017 (Dearing)

Summer-like air enveloped the Maritime Provinces with new record high temperatures set in all three provinces yesterday.

Environment Canada says more than a dozen communities in New Brunswick hit new maximums for the date including St. Stephen at 34.0 C (hot spot in Canada), Fredericton at 33.0 C and both Woodstock and Edmundston at 32.0 C.

While the thermometer reached a record-breaking 30.5 C at the Greater Moncton International Airport, the overall 18 May record for Moncton is 31.7 C from 1918.

In Nova Scotia, new records were set in Greenwood and Kejimkujik Park at 32.0 C while Summerside, Prince Edward Island warmed up to 26.3 C.

St. John River remains above flood stage

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Flooding along the St. John River, Fredericton, NB, 07 May 2017 (Instagram)

Much of New Brunswick was spared the worst of a low pressure system which delivered heavy rain and created flooding over the weekend especially along the St. John River.

Environment Canada says the extreme southern half of the province had the most rain with more than 100 mm in some areas and unofficially almost 180 mm (about two months worth) fell in Mechanic Settlement, near Fundy National Park.

Moncton got off relatively easy with 40 mm of rain while Saint John had 70 mm and Fredericton reported 80 mm.

The Emergency Measures Organization says water levels should remain high but steady for the rest of this week with more rain on the way.

Spring arrives!

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Ice melting in Irishtown Reservoir, Moncton, 18 Mar 2017 (Dearing)

After a stormy, rollercoaster winter in Southeast New Brunswick, spring will be especially welcomed today at 7:28am ADT.

The vernal or spring equinox is when the sun’s direct rays move north of the equator from the southern to the northern hemisphere.

At this time, the length of day and night are about equal and days will continue to lengthen until the summer solstice in June.

But winter is not over yet as Environment Canada says a low pressure system will bring snow to Nova Scotia and the possibility of freezing rain for Greater Moncton.

Nor’easter not as bad as expected

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Snow begins falling in NE Moncton, 14 March 2017 (Dearing)

An intense Nor’easter moved into New Brunswick last night from the U.S.Eastern Seaboard with heavy, wet snow and high winds creating blowing snow and poor visibility.

Snow switched over to rain over southern and central New Brunswick with a
brief period of freezing rain and ice pellets.

Forecasters had originally said up to 45 cm of snow could fall in parts of the province.

Summary of snowfall in centimetres:

Bathurst 30
Kouchibouguac 26
Fredericton 20
Edmundston 18
Moncton 17
Miramichi 16
Saint John 15

Summary of maximum winds in kilometres per hour:

Grand Manan 102
Saint John 102
Miramichi 81
Fredericton 80
Moncton 78
CFB Gagetown 72
Kouchibouguac 61

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

February 2017 – Lots of snow then mild

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Spillway at Irishtown Nature Park, Moncton, 26 Feb 2017 (Dearing)

Three major winter storms including a blizzard were part of a very active weather pattern in Greater Moncton during February.

While snowfall was below normal in January, it made up for it in February with more than double the average amount recorded.

Temperatures were above normal but oddly enough it was still warmer in January which is typically the coldest month.

The final week felt like spring with mild temperatures climbing above 10 C which was enough to melt most of the snow which had fallen during the previous three weeks.

FEBRUARY 2017 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)

Average HIGH  -1.2 C

Average LOW  -10.9 C

AVERAGE  -6.2 C (about 1.4 degrees ABOVE normal)

Extreme HIGH  11.5 C (24 February)

Extreme LOW  -22.6 C (12 February)

RAINFALL  19.7 mm (slightly BELOW normal)

SNOWFALL  124.1 cm (about 100 percent ABOVE normal)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

Record highs in Eastern Canada

What a difference in one week in downtown Fredericton, 23 Feb 2017 (Facebook)

The weather has been relatively calm lately in New Brunswick and the Maritimes which has been a welcome relief after a string of winter storms earlier this month.

Mild air has pushed into the region which set several record highs yesterday both here and in Southern Ontario.

The Greater Moncton International Airport reached 10 C and it was the warmest temperature since 18 December – just shy of the record of 13.2 from 1981.

But some weather stations in the Moncton area climbed as high as 13 C.

New record highs for 23 February:

Kouchibouguac Nat’l Park 12.4 C

Woodstock, NB 11.9 C

Bathurst 10.5 C

Windsor, ON 19.3 C

London, ON 18.3 C

Toronto Pearson Airport 17.7 C

Greater Moncton buried in SNOW!

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A view of downtown from Moncton City Hall, 15 Feb 2017 (Facebook/CityofMoncton)

All is calm today but a parade of storms have been pounding Metro Moncton this month.

Environment Canada says 120 cm of snow has fallen at the airport so far this month with another ten days still to go.

Based on a thirty-year average, February snowfall in Moncton is typically about 65 cm.

But there is some good news on the horizon.

Meteorologist Claude Cote says we can expect much calmer weather over the next few days.

“This was the last of a series of four systems which have gone through the Moncton area in the past two weeks,” he notes.

Cote adds temperatures are expected to be fairly mild in the coming days with many daytime highs above the freezing mark.