The thermometer finally hit 20°C in Greater Moncton – a benchmark not seen since 26 September (almost eight months!) – and it comes much later compared to recent years.
The temperature reached 20.3°C late this afternoon although Fredericton was the hot spot in New Brunswick at 21.7°C.
It has been an exceptionally cold spring – May is running about four degrees below average to date – and even slightly colder than last year’s chilly season.
Environment Canada is forecasting another cool start to the week but a warming trend could push daytime highs to almost 30°C by Friday.
Parlee Beach, NB, 22 March 2012
Early spring is not known as being particularly warm in New Brunswick, but the early days of spring in March 2012 were a rare exception.
For three consecutive days, the thermometer soared into the 20’s Celsius in Southeast New Brunswick breaking record highs and culminating in an unbelievable all-time monthly maximum of 26.1°C on 22 March 2012.
Beachgoers flocked to the coast to take advantage of the summer-like conditions and some at Parlee Beach even took a dip in the Northumberland Strait despite ice patches still floating in the water.
Although temperatures have been near normal so far this month, Greater Moncton has yet to crack 10°C.
Although it seems like really cold weather arrived earlier than usual, the chart above shows a drop of -10°C occurred on the same date last year in Greater Moncton – 14 November.
Over the last seven years, the temperature has gotten that cold between mid-November and early December.
The thermometer will likely sink to -15°C sometime later next month.
The last time it dropped that low in Southeast New Brunswick was 10 March.
Aboiteau Beach, Cap-Pele, NB, 04 July 2019 (Dearing)
In less than two hours, the temperature in Greater Moncton dropped from 31.1°C to 24.0°C late this afternoon – a difference of seven degrees.
A cold front moved through New Brunswick with thunderstorms marking an abrupt end to the summer’s first brief heat wave.
Environment Canada even issued a tornado warning for the Grand Lake area after a possible twister developed south of Boiestown.
The warning was lifted after 30 minutes and no damage or injuries were reported.
Record highs have been broken in a number of communities across the Maritimes.
Friday, 05 July:
Kouchibouguac NP, new record 31.1°C, old record 33.9°C from 1939
Grand Manan, new record 31.7°C, old record 30.0°C from 1999
Halifax Stanfield Airport, 32.7°C, old record 31.4°C from 2013
Greater Moncton was within a hair of breaking a record Saturday and Sunday it was the warmest on that date since 2013.
05 July, high 34.0°C, record 34.2°C from 2018
06 July, high 31.4°C, record 35.0°C from 19 11
(Data courtesy Environment Canada)
Strawberry plant in blossom after rain, NE Moncton, 29 June 2019 (Dearing)
The average monthly temperature for June in Greater Moncton was at least close to normal compared to a damp, cold May.
While daytime highs climbed to 20°C or higher on 20 days, significant heat was scarce and the thermometer didn’t even get close to 30°C.
Rainfall was heavier than normal – a measurable amount was recorded on 21 days – following a trend which began in early spring.
About three-quarters of the precipitation fell during the last ten days of the month.
JUNE 2019 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)
Average HIGH 21.0°C
Average LOW 8.8°C
AVERAGE 14.9°C (about 0.3 degrees BELOW normal)
Extreme HIGH 26.0°C (19 June)
Extreme LOW 2.8°C (01 June)
RAINFALL 128.9 mm (almost 30 percent ABOVE normal)
(Data courtesy Environment Canada)
Irishtown Nature Park, Moncton, 20 May 2019 (Dearing)
May 2019 proved to be the coldest May since 1974 in the Maritimes with temperatures about two or three degrees below normal.
The month started out with some warmth in Greater Moncton but it turned colder near the middle with snow recorded as late as the 21st before a slight recovery at the end.
Overnight lows were cold with six nights either at or below freezing and most minimums were in the low single digits.
Cold, damp and cloudy weather stunted growth and forced farmers to delay planting because fields were saturated.
Only three days reached or exceeded 20°C and the thermometer came nowhere near 30°C at any time of the month.
MAY 2019 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)
Average HIGH 13.4°C
Average LOW 1.8°C
AVERAGE 7.6°C (about 2.4 degrees BELOW normal)
Extreme HIGH 22.1°C (25 May)
Extreme LOW -2.7°C (02 May)
RAINFALL 105.8 mm (about 10 percent ABOVE normal)
SNOWFALL 0.8 cm (near normal)
(Data courtesy Environment Canada)
Snow in Rexton, 21 May 2019 (S. Hudson/Facebook)
It snowed overnight in Southeast New Brunswick.
About 0.6 cm of wet snow was recorded at the Greater Moncton Airport and even higher accumulations around the region.
In recent history, I can’t recall a snowfall this late in the month of May.
With meteorological summer arriving in 10 days and astronomical summer in barely a month, I’ve concluded that 2019 is the “Year Without Spring”.
The cold, damp weather has impacted farmers who are at least two weeks behind in planting crops due to saturated fields.
Sidewalk patios are eerily empty and winter parkas are still being worn by many.
A frost advisory has been posted for tonight and another one will likely be posted in two days as temperatures drop to near freezing again overnight.
Will the weather improve anytime soon?
A high of 20°C is forecast for Saturday but keep in mind we often hit 30°C before the beginning of June.
Hummingbird feeder in NE Moncton, 05 May 2019 (Dearing)
It took a little bit longer this spring compared to the last several years but Greater Moncton has finally reached 20°C.
The daytime high Sunday was 19.7°C which is about as close as you can get and while it was a cooler Monday, the temperature climbed to 21.1°C Tuesday.
Environment Canada is forecasting cooler, slightly below temperatures for the remainder of the week.
Annual dates reaching 20°C…
2019 – 05 May
2018 – 24 April
2017 – 11 April
2016 – 21 April
2015 – 04 May
2014 – 13 April
Glorious sunset in NE Moncton, 22 Apr 2019 (Dearing)
Spring can be the most disappointing season of the year in New Brunswick and April 2019 was no exception with cloudy, cool and often wet conditions.
Surprisingly, Greater Moncton was close to normal in temperature but double the average amount of rain fell along with slightly more snow than usual.
Melting snow and heavy precipitation led to more disastrous flooding along the St. John River – almost as bad as last year’s historic water levels.
Only one day was fully below freezing and while nights weren’t that cold, daytime highs often struggled to reach the double digits.
APRIL 2019 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)
Average HIGH 8.1°C
Average LOW -1.0°C
AVERAGE 3.6°C (near normal)
Extreme HIGH 18.9°C (21 Apr)
Extreme LOW -6.0°C (08 Apr)
RAINFALL 122.5 mm (about 100 percent ABOVE normal)
SNOWFALL 32.8 cm (slightly ABOVE normal)
( Data courtesy Environment Canada)
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.