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)
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.
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.
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.
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.
The 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.
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.
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.
Environment Canada is advising on how to avoid frostbite and hypothermia with Southeast New Brunswick under an extreme cold warning.
A bitterly cold Arctic air mass will move across the province Thursday and into Friday.
Temperatures are expected to drop below -20°C by Friday morning with winds gusting from 40 to 60 km/h behind a deepening low pressure system.
Wind chill values are expected to fall below -35 for the early part of Friday.
Snowy scene along TCH near Perth-Andover, NB, 16 May 2016 (NB Hwy Cams)
With a cold, intermittent rain shower, the thermometer barely reached 7 C at midday in Greater Moncton and with strong winds gusting near 70 km/h, the wind chill made it feel more like -3 C.
Did I mention it was the middle of May and it also snowed today in western New Brunswick and in the neighbouring State of Maine?
Up to 20 centimetres of snow fell over Carleton and Victoria Counties thanks to a blast of Arctic air and a low pressure system moving through the region.
Forecasters say temperatures will improve as the week goes on with highs near the seasonal mark of 17 C by Thursday.