Winter storms target N.B.

Winter storm

Whiteout conditions in the first of three winter storms, west end Moncton, 08 March 2018 (Dearing)

The first of three successive snow events dropped 15.3 cm and slight amounts of rain on Greater Moncton yesterday.

However, the intermission is a short one with Environment Canada issuing another snowfall warning for most of New Brunswick.

The next low pressure system arrives tonight and will persist into Saturday with flurries still possible on Sunday as the storm stalls in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

Up to 25 cm could fall by the time it finally leaves the province and even more is expected in northern New Brunswick.

Monday is expected to be partly sunny before another system with more snow arrives on Tuesday.


1-2-3 Winter Punch Coming


An early sign of spring in downtown Moncton, 03 March 2018 (Dearing)

After days of cloudy skies and mostly dry conditions, it seems Old Man Winter is returning.

While no weather warnings are currently in place for Southeast New Brunswick, snowfall advisories have been issued for areas to the north and west.

Environment Canada says a low pressure system approaching from the U.S. Northeast could bring 10-15 cm of snow Thursday with a changeover to rain by evening as temperatures climb above freezing.

But another storm system will move into the region late Friday and into Saturday with rain changing over to snow.

And early next week could bring yet another storm system.

Winter 2017/18 – Riding a Rollercoaster!


A view of downtown Moncton from city hall, 23 Jan 2018 (City of Moncton)

Meteorological winter 2017/18 is now in the books since the three month period of December, January and February is over but we all know winter is not over yet in Southeast New Brunswick.

What a ride it has been in Greater Moncton with temperatures fluctuating wildly from very mild to extremely cold in just hours and in one case in mere minutes.

Snowfall was lighter compared to normal especially in February but the bigger concern were frequent periods of mixed, icy precipitation such as freezing rain and ice pellets.

WINTER ALMANAC 2017/18 at the Greater Moncton International Airport

Average HIGH  -1.2 C (about 0.9 degrees ABOVE normal)

Average LOW  -11.0 C (about 1 degree ABOVE normal)

AVERAGE  -6.1 C (about 1 degree ABOVE normal)

Extreme HIGH  16.7 C (13 January – highest temperature ever recorded in January)

Extreme LOW  -22.3 C (07 February)

RAINFALL  134.4 mm (about 20 percent ABOVE normal)

SNOWFALL  177.8 cm (about 15 percent BELOW normal)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)


February 2018 – Warm with more rain

Shubie Sam

Shubenacadie Sam predicted an early spring, 02 Feb 2018 (Shubenacadie Wildlife Park, NS)

The first half of February in Southeast New Brunswick was decidedly winter with frigid overnight lows dropping to a numbing -21 C in the first few days alone.

But the second half of the month was spring-like with most daytime highs above freezing and more tolerable minimums.

The average monthly temperature for Greater Moncton was about 3.2 degrees above normal and anything above 2 degrees is considered significant in meteorology.

Precipitation was slightly above average with more rain than snow falling compared to normal.

FEBRUARY 2018 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)

Average HIGH  1.0 C

Average LOW  -9.7 C

AVERAGE  -4.4 C (about 3.2 degrees ABOVE normal)

Extreme HIGH  12.9 C (21 Feb)

Extreme LOW  -20.5 C (03 Feb)

RAINFALL  42.0 mm (more than 30 percent ABOVE normal)

SNOWFALL  49.2 cm (about 25 percent BELOW normal)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

Rivers spill banks in SW Ontario

Days of rain, melting snow and ice jams have created swollen rivers and streams in Southwestern Ontario causing historic flooding.

A young boy was swept from his mother’s arms in a stranded vehicle along the Grand River near Orangeville and efforts to find him are still underway.

Streets, homes and businesses in low-lying areas of Chatham-Kent were flooded after officials say the Thames River peaked at 5.25 metres above normal Saturday.

Emergency responders had to rescue some residents by boat who were taken to a local convention centre for shelter.

Escaping a strange winter


The beaches of Varadero, Cuba, 15 February 2018 (Dearing)

Let’s face it, winter in Southeast New Brunswick has been a volatile roller coaster ride with wildly fluctuating temperatures and unusual amounts of mixed precipitation.

I wanted an escape, so a two-week vacation getaway to Cuba was in order.

From 06-20 February, the island’s most popular beach destination of Varadero enjoyed daytime highs in the upper 20s C with glorious sunshine and just a few passing clouds.

Winter is the dry season in Cuba and precipitation was light except for a lengthy downpour of rain during just one early morning.

Varadero has some of the best beaches in the Caribbean and millions of international visitors – mostly Canadians – flock there every year.

Another flash freeze!


Icy conditions in a parking lot of NE Moncton, 11 Jan 2018 (Dearing)

Environment Canada issued a flash freeze warning for much of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island early today.

A low pressure system brought snow, later rain and then snow again after the temperature plummeted as Arctic air pushed back into the region.

The daytime high in Greater Moncton was 3.0 C at 11am and pooling water began freezing when the thermometer dropped below freezing by 3pm.

By early Saturday, forecasters say the low could drop to -20 C but temperatures will moderate on Sunday before falling again on Monday.

January 2018 – Turbulent!


The Petitcodiac River in Moncton looking toward Dieppe, 28 January 2018 (Dearing)

The first month of 2018 proved to be quite a roller coaster ride in Southeast New Brunswick.

Bitter cold to begin January was briefly erased by a fast-moving ‘bomb cyclone’ until another Arctic blast sunk the low to -22.3 C with a bitter wind chill of -36.

A record thaw saw the thermometer climb to 16.7 C in Greater Moncton – the highest ever in January – and a new all-time provincial high of 17.3 C in Sussex.

Precipitation was above average overall with near normal snowfall – 25 cm was the heaviest snow event on 30-31 – and about twice as much rainfall.

JANUARY 2018 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)

Average HIGH  -2.0 C

Average LOW  -12.6 C

AVERAGE  -7.4 C (1.5 degrees ABOVE normal)

Extreme HIGH  16.7 C (13 Jan, new all-time monthly high)

Extreme LOW  -22.3 C (07 Jan)

RAINFALL  53.3 mm (almost 50 percent ABOVE normal)

SNOWFALL  77.2 cm (NEAR normal)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

Flooding in northern France

A street lamp and a tree are seen on the flooded banks of the River Seine in Paris

Flooding along the River Seine in Paris, France, 27 Jan 2018 (Reuters)

According to France’s meteorological agency, rain in December and January has led to the third wettest period ever in Paris which is why the River Seine and other tributaries in northern France have spilled their banks.

The river is expected to peak on Sunday at 6 metres – normally it measures 2 metres – slightly below the exceptional flooding in 2016 and the disastrous flood of 1910.

Some riverside restaurants have been submerged and roads and parks have been closed due to high water levels.

All boat traffic on the Seine has been halted including tourist cruises, some Metro stations are shuttered and the Louvre has shut down the museum’s lower level as a precaution.

Snow vanishes!


Bare ground in west end Moncton after rain washes away snow cover, 24 Jan 2018 (Dearing)

The snow cover in Greater Moncton has disappeared after the latest storm system rolled through with mixed precipitation and mild temperatures.

Rainfall amounts varied from 20 to 70 mm across New Brunswick, up to 8 hours of freezing rain fell in Gagetown and 20 cm of snow was recorded in Bathurst and Edmundston.

Record highs for 23 January were set in Saint John at 10.4 C and St. Stephen reached 11.3 C.

Since a consistent snow cover began on 09 December in Southeast New Brunswick, the ground has been bare a couple of times for short periods.