Heat wave in the West

calgaryheat27july17

Cooling off in the Elbow River, SW Calgary, AB, 27 July 2017 (Postmedia/G. Young)

Environment Canada issued heat warnings for most of Alberta along with parts of Saskatchewan and Manitoba this week in the wake of sizzling high temperatures.

The weather office says a daytime maximum of 30 C or higher could pose an elevated risk of heat-related illnesses and residents should avoid outdoor activities until cooler hours of the day.

Temperatures could climb to 33 C as far north as Thompson and almost 30 C in Churchill along the Hudson Bay coast.

Forecasters say the extreme heat will continue this weekend but a slight cool down is expected early next week.

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Blizzard buries northern Manitoba

A blizzard buries front entrance of hotel in Churchill, MB, 09 March 2017 (Twitter)

Blizzards are not uncommon in late winter across the Prairie Provinces but the latest one to grip northern Manitoba lasted three days and dumped 60 cm snow in Churchill with winds up to 120 km/h creating enormous nine metre drifts.

Canada’s Polar Bear Capital declared a local state of emergency in an effort to gain resources from higher levels of government to help deal with the clean up.

Environment Canada says the blizzard in Churchill lasted 58 hours which was the third longest since 1953.

The fierce combination of snow and wind also stranded six people on a highway near Thompson for three days.

Record scorcher in Manitoba

Courtesy The Weather Network

Courtesy The Weather Network

An unstable air mass brought excessive heat to Manitoba yesterday where it climbed to a record 35.4 C in Swan River – the hotspot in Canada.

Winnipeg was toasty at a record 33.3 C and even Thompson in the province’s far north was very warm at 30.2 C.

But the heat was short-lived when severe thunderstorms rolled across the province and into Ontario.

Temperatures ranged from the high 20’s in Northern Ontario to the low 20’s in Southern Ontario.