Bitter cold hangs on

Irishtown Nature Park reservoir is already frozen, 01 Dec 2018 (Dearing)

An Arctic air mass continues to have its grip over the Maritimes with today marking the sixth day of below freezing temperatures in Greater Moncton.

The early morning lows dropped to -16.1°C yesterday and -16.5°C today.

Brisk northwest winds have also created bitter wind chills into the -20s this weekend giving a risk of frostbite on exposed skin.

The normal high for early December is 0°C and the low is -8°C.

Environment Canada says temperatures may not climb above freezing until Friday making this one of the longest cold snaps in recent memory.

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November 2018 – Cold & snowy

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Snow settles in NE Moncton before changeover to rain, 10 Nov 2018 (Dearing)

About twice the normal amount of precipitation fell in Southeast New Brunswick during November which began as heavy rain and became heavy snow when it turned colder.

Two major rain events which included hurricane force winds were followed by the first snowfall of the season on the 10th and three more snow events to round out the month.

Greater Moncton had snow cover starting on the 14th and by the 30th, about 31 cm of snow was lying on the ground – almost eight times more than normal.

Temperatures were mild during the first third of the month and became decidedly frigid by the middle with lows near -15 C accompanied by bitterly cold wind chills.

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

Average HIGH 3.2°C

Average LOW -4.0°C

AVERAGE -0.4°C (about 2.3 degrees BELOW normal)

Extreme HIGH 17.1°C (03 Nov)

Extreme LOW -15.3°C (22 Nov)

RAINFALL 141.4 mm (about 50 percent ABOVE normal)

SNOWFALL 75.0 cm (about 4 times ABOVE normal)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

January 2018 – Turbulent!

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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)

Arctic air to retreat

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Snow is piled high in Boston, MA, USA, 05 Jan 2018 (AP)

Much of New Brunswick was under another extreme cold warning this weekend with a near record low of -22.3 C in Greater Moncton today (record is -23.3 C from 1945) and a bone-chilling wind chill near -36.

Environment Canada is calling for temperatures to moderate this week with a return to near normal values and even above freezing temperatures by Thursday.

The Northeast United States has also been under a cold snap and the thermometer bottomed out Sunday with record lows in a number of cities including Burlington, Vermont at -29 C and Portland, Maine at -24 C.

Boston, Massachusetts tied its record low of -19 C just days after digging out from 34 cm of snow during the ‘bomb cyclone’ and being inundated with icy floodwaters from the highest tides in a century.

Extreme cold warning

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A portion of Niagara Falls has frozen over, along Canada-US border, 31 Dec 2017 (Instagram)

Environment Canada issued an extreme cold warning today for most of New Brunswick with frigid temperatures and moderate winds bringing bitter wind chills between -30 and -36 on New Year’s Day and 02 January.

From Yukon to Quebec, extreme cold warnings have been posted prompting many cities including Toronto and Ottawa to cancel some New Year’s Eve festivities or move events indoors.

In Calgary, zoo officials say it’s been so cold even the penguins have been brought inside.

Claresholm, Alberta set a new record low of -41.8 C and Brooks was close behind at -40.5 C.

Snow here and there

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A ridge of clouds as the sun rises over northern Nova Scotia near Truro, 15 Dec 2017 (Dearing)

A ridge of clouds as the sun rose over northern Nova Scotia was an awesome sight to behold during a trip from Moncton to Halifax on Friday.

Although Greater Moncton lost most of its snow cover due to rain a few days ago, Truro picked up some snow early Friday (5-10 cm) but Halifax was snow-free.

The Nova Scotia capital did pick up a few centimetres early Saturday but Truro and Moncton didn’t.

But the entire Maritimes is under an Arctic air mass which has brought cold wind chills to -25 and daytime highs well below freezing.

Blizzard warning downgraded 

Sunset in Irishtown Nature Park, Moncton, 18 March 2017 (Dearing)

A low pressure system from Quebec tracking eastward into New Brunswick was originally expected to be a blizzard but Environment Canada downgraded that warning to a blowing snow advisory late today.

After reaching a high of 5 C by afternoon in Greater Moncton, the thermometer dropped below freezing by evening and rain changed to snow.

Strong, gusty winds will create blowing snow with 10 cm possible before conditions improve tomorrow.

Wind chills will be unseasonably cold over the next 24 hours with values as low as -27 C.

Nor’easter replacing frigid air

Screenshot (76)_LIThe last week of winter in New Brunswick has felt more like January than March but that frigid air is about to be replaced by a powerful Nor’easter forming off the U.S. Eastern Seaboard from two low pressure systems.

Overnight temperatures plunged to -20.1 C in Greater Moncton on the weekend which is close to a record low and daytime highs remained well below freezing with dangerous wind chills as low as -35 at times.

Environment Canada says heavy snow and winds creating blowing snow will move into southwestern New Brunswick Tuesday afternoon and spread to the remainder of the province in the evening.

Snow will likely change to rain by early Wednesday with most areas of the province expected to receive up to 30 cm of snow.

Before the storm reaches the Maritimes, forecasters say the Nor’easter could drop between 30 and 50 cm of snow in the U.S. Northeast from Washington DC to New York to Boston.

Brief Arctic Blast

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Courtesy The Weather Network

The wind chill was so bitterly cold in Greater Moncton early this morning, it felt more like -35 as the temperature fell to -22 C.

However, the Arctic blast will be short-lived as a Colorado Low approaches the Maritimes with snow, rain and milder temperatures.

Environment Canada is forecasting highs of 8 C by later this week in Southeast New Brunswick.

But by the weekend, temperatures will plummet once again with a low of -16 C expected by early Saturday morning.

Coldest weather in 40 years

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A cold late afternoon in downtown Moncton, 16 Dec 2016 (Facebook)

An Arctic air mass has lowered temperatures in Southeast New Brunswick to their coldest levels for mid-December since the early 1970s.

The thermometer dropped below -20°C  over the last two days in Greater Moncton settling at -22.1°C this morning with a bitter wind chill of -35.

The record for this date is -26.1°C from 1943.

Environment Canada is forecasting a sharp temperature rise overnight and tomorrow.