Stormy American Thanksgiving weekend

US storm

Snow clearing for NFL game at MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ, USA, 01 Dec 2019 (R. Deutsch/USA Today)

A major winter storm made its way across the United States during the American Thanksgiving weekend disrupting travel plans for millions.

The massive system began on the West Coast as a bomb cyclone bringing wind gusts up to 160 km/h and heavy amounts of snow in the mountains.

Strong winds accompanied by a mixture of rain, freezing rain, ice pellets and snow fell from the Great Plains to the Midwest and into the Northeastern U.S.

Boston recorded 20 cm of snow with more than 60 cm falling in other parts of New England before the system headed to the Maritime Provinces and Newfoundland.

Northern fires keep southern temperatures down

Winds are carrying smoke from forest fires in British Columbia, the Prairies and the Northwest Territories into Ontario and the Northeastern United States.

Forecasters say the smoke is even lowering temperatures by several degrees which has explained why Central Canada and the eastern Great Lakes region have been experiencing lower than average temperatures so far this summer.

The jet stream has been carrying the smoke but officials say it is moving at such a high altitude that air quality will likely not be affected in the region.

New York to Newfoundland – blizzard of ’14

Blizzard wallops Halifax, NS, 03 Jan 2014 (CP)

Blizzard wallops Halifax, NS, 03 Jan 2014 (CP)

The first winter storm of 2014 packed quite a punch in the Northeastern United States, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland – dropping up to 60 cm of snow with strong winds reducing visibility.

But further inland, the blizzard was less intense and much less snow was recorded.

In Greater Moncton, many are likely relieved we received only 4.3 cm given that we already have almost 90 cm of snow on the ground.

Atlantic Canada SNOW TOTALS

Halifax (Stanfield Airport) 26 cm
St. John’s 28.4 cm
Sydney 24.8 cm
Charlottetown 12.2 cm
Saint John Airport 9.2 cm
Greater Moncton Airport 4.3 cm

Northeast United States SNOW TOTALS

Boston (Logan Airport) 38 cm
New York (Central Park) 16 cm
Newark (Liberty Airport) 22 cm
Riverhead (Long Island, NY) 30 cm
Philadelphia 23 cm
Washington, DC 8 cm

(Data courtesy Environment Canada and U.S. National Weather Service)

Blizzard snowfall totals

A car buried in snow in Massachusetts, USA (

A car buried in snow in Massachusetts, USA (

The so-called Blizzard of 2013 was significant not only for the heavy snow it dumped on an area from Ontario to the Northeastern United States to Atlantic Canada but also for the high winds which created whiteout conditions.

Some blizzard snowfall totals:


Greenwood, NS 51 cm
Sydney, NS 41 cm
Moncton, NB (Airport) 40 cm
Charlottetown, PEI 30 cm
Halifax, NS (Airport) 27 cm
St. John’s, NL 20 cm


Waterloo 40 cm
Orillia 39 cm
Toronto (Pearson Airport) 30 cm
Trenton 30 cm
Toronto (Island Airport) 25 cm
Ottawa 17 cm


Hamden, CT 102 cm
Portland, ME 81 cm
Boston, MA (Logan Airport) 63 cm
Concord, NH 61 cm
Yonkers, NY 58 cm
Providence, RI 43 cm
New York, NY (Central Park) 29 cm
Newark, NJ (Airport) 25 cm

(Totals courtesy Environment Canada and

Canada’s Top 10 Weather Stories of 2011

Flooding in the Prairies (Lyndon Tucker photo)

Environment Canada has released its annual list of top ten weather stories of the year:

1.  Prairie flooding – Historic spring floods in Manitoba and Saskatchewan turn into historic summer floods.

2.  Alberta burning – Forest fires destroy one-third of the town of Slave Lake, Alberta in May.

3.  Richelieu flooding – Quebec’s Richelieu Valley floods after heavy snowpack melts in Northeastern U.S.

4.  Farming challenges – From coast to coast, wet fields cause problems throughout the growing season.

5.  Ontario twisters – An F3 tornado (with winds up to 320 km/h) ravages SW town of Goderich.

6.  Busy Atlantic hurricanes – Irene, Katia, Maria and Ophelia did the most damage of the season in Atlantic Canada.

7.  Bummer Summer – Either too hot in Central Canada or too wet and cool on both the East and West Coasts.

8.  Arctic ice shrinking – Sea ice in the Arctic reaches an all-time minimum in September since records began 50 years ago.

9.  Groundhog Day Storm – Blizzard shuts down travel for days in Ontario, Quebec and Atlantic Canada.

10.  Windy Alberta – Strong winds in November (peak gust of 204 km/h) blow trucks off highways and shatter office towers in Calgary.