Irishtown Reservoir, Moncton, 05 Nov 2017 (Dearing)
Autumn has made an abrupt return to Southeast New Brunswick.
The passage of a cold front lowered daytime highs in Greater Moncton from a near record of 19.3 C to a below seasonal high of 5.2 C over the past 24 hours.
Temperatures are poised to drop even lower later this week when the first blast of Arctic air this season moves into the Maritimes.
Environment Canada is forecasting a low of -7 C by early Saturday which will likely mean a hard, killing frost for any remaining sensitive vegetation.
Many trees are losing leaves in west end Moncton, 27 Oct 2017 (Dearing)
October often felt like August in Greater Moncton with 12 days reaching daytime highs of 20 C or higher.
Environment Canada says only October 1913 was slightly warmer since records began in 1881.
Temperatures did fall below freezing on 7 days with some scattered frost but the month escaped a hard frost and vegetation continued to flourish.
Rainfall was more than 30 percent below normal in Southeast New Brunswick continuing a prolonged dry period which began in early summer.
OCTOBER 2017 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)
Average HIGH 17.7 C
Average LOW 5.0 C
AVERAGE 11.4 C (about 3.8 degrees ABOVE normal)
Extreme HIGH 23.7 C (08 Oct)
Extreme LOW -1.8 C (13 Oct)
RAINFALL 76.5 mm (about 30 percent BELOW normal)
(Data courtesy Environment Canada)
A slow moving frontal system brought heavy rain to western New Brunswick with about 20 mm falling per hour in the southwest.
Environment Canada reported 174 mm of rain in St. Stephen over a two day period which is a shocking amount considering about 180 mm fell from June to September.
Other amounts include 112 mm in Edmundston, 93 mm in Woodstock and 74 mm in Fredericton.
Rainfall totals were much lower in Southeast New Brunswick where only 27 mm fell at the Greater Moncton International Airport.
Tropical air with this system broke more record highs in Atlantic Canada with a maximum of 23.4 C in Moncton and Bouctouche, 23.5 C in Cheticamp, 22.0 C in Deer Lake and 21.2 C in Happy Valley-Goose Bay.
Autumn 2017 – Abnormally dry (YELLOW), Moderate drought (TAN), courtesy Agriculture Canada
Central New Brunswick is experiencing a moderate drought while much of the rest of the province is abnormally dry except for the Acadian Peninsula according to Agriculture Canada.
Forecasters say two weather systems could bring as much as 100 mm of rain on Thursday and Friday which is welcome relief for a prolonged dry period which began in early summer.
Environment Canada has issued rainfall warnings for western and southern New Brunswick but the Southeast is expecting less than 40 mm.
Meantime, more record highs were broken across the Maritimes today as southerly air continued to push temperatures well into the 20’s C.
Maple tree past peak in Moncton, 22 Oct 2017 (Dearing)
The fall foliage in Southeast New Brunswick is now past peak and the leaves are starting to tumble to the ground.
Typically a strong wind and/or rain event will bring down most remaining leaves from the trees with maples the first to shed and oaks among the last.
Forestry experts say unseasonably warm weather across the Maritimes this autumn have muted some fall colours.
Rich, vivid displays are most common when days are sunny but cool and nights are cold.
Centennial Park (top) and Irishtown Nature Park (bottom), Moncton, 09 Oct 2017 (Dearing)
Mother Nature is putting on a great show this autumn with brilliant hues of red, yellow and orange throughout Southeast New Brunswick.
The tourism department says fall colours have reached their peak across northern New Brunswick and are near peak in the rest of the province.
On Thanksgiving Monday, I had a chance to capture images of the amazing fall foliage in Greater Moncton at Centennial Park and Irishtown Nature Park.
Aboiteau Beach, Cap-Pele, NB, 08 Oct 2017 (Dearing)
The jet stream brought warm southerly air into the Maritimes allowing temperatures in Southeast New Brunswick to climb into the 20s this Thanksgiving weekend.
Environment Canada says Greater Moncton reached a daytime high of 20.2 C on 07 October, 23.7 C on 08 October (near the record of 23.9 C from 1970), and 22.9 C on 09 October.
Given the autumn warmth, I couldn’t resist a visit to Aboiteau Beach (and neither could a handful of others) which was near 24 C under a mostly cloudy sky and it was quite windy.
Greenwood, Nova Scotia was the hot spot in Canada hitting 26 C for two days in a row.
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.
Patchy frost in NE Moncton, 01 Oct 2017 (Dearing)
Perhaps it’s fitting that October has begun with patchy frost in Greater Moncton given that autumn weather arrived abruptly just days ago following a stretch of hot summerlike conditions.
Environment Canada had issued a frost advisory for three nights running (and another one has been issued tonight) for Southeast New Brunswick but frost finally made an appearance early today when the thermometer dropped to -1.0 C.
Fortunately, the flower boxes on my balcony were not affected and I brought my tomato plant inside just in case.
The last time the temperature fell below freezing in Greater Moncton was 06 June which means 116 days were consecutively above freezing in 2017.
Maple leaves changing colour in Fairview Knoll Park, Moncton, 04 Sept 2017 (Dearing)
September turned out to be a continuation of summer in Southeast New Brunswick right up until month end.
Daytime highs in Greater Moncton climbed above 25 C on ten days and a monthly maximum of 31.1 C turned out to be the warmest of 2017 set in early fall (26 Sept).
Although hurricanes never directly affected the province, meteorologists say much of the warmth last month came from tropical air pushed northward from these storms.
Rainfall was exactly normal but almost all of the precipitation fell during a single rain event spread over two days (6-7 Sept).
SEPTEMBER 2017 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)
Average HIGH 22.3 C
Average LOW 9.4 C
AVERAGE 15.8 C (about 2.2 degrees ABOVE normal)
Extreme HIGH 31.1 C (26 Sept, warmest high of 2017)
Extreme LOW 0.6 C (30 Sept)
RAINFALL 93.5 mm (Exactly NORMAL)
(Data courtesy Environment Canada)