Sunday, February 11, 2018

Brief mid week warm up.. but generally below normal this week and next. Snow drought continues..

It's been a cold start to February across southern Manitoba, and it looks like the cold weather will persist through much of this week and next. There will be some brief warmups from time to time (such as this Wednesday), but overall, it looks like a below normal temperature pattern is expected across the Prairies through next week. As of Feb 10th, the average temperature at YWG airport has been -21.4C, about 6C below average for the first 10 days of the month.  It's been the 3rd coldest start to February in the past 20 years (only Feb 2007 and 2014 had colder starts) 

As for this week, it will be another cold start to the work week as temperatures drop to the -30C mark early Monday with winds of 10-15 km/h producing windchills near -40.  Highs of -16C are expected by afternoon, about 6C below the average high of -10C for this time of year. Temperatures will moderate to -5C by Tuesday but gusty SW winds of 30-50 km/h will make it feel colder. On Wednesday, a clipper system will track through the MB interlake area bringing a brief warmup to southern MB, with highs rising close to the freezing mark in Winnipeg by Wednesday afternoon. The mild spell will be short lived however as a trailing cold front pushes through in the afternoon, sending temperatures falling as strong northerly winds develop. Some snow and blowing snow will likely develop as well Wednesday afternoon and evening as the colder air spreads in. This will lead into another few days of colder than normal weather to end the week Thursday and Friday. Temperatures are expected to moderate again next weekend, but again, the warmup looks short lived as colder weather returns for the third week of February. 

Precipitation-wise, new snowfall looks minimal again across southern MB. There may be a bit of snow with the Arctic front Wednesday (tr - 2 cm) but other than that, no significant precipitation is expected over southern MB through next weekend. As of Feb 10th, Winnipeg has seen only 52.8 cm of snow this winter.. its lowest snowfall to this point in the winter since the winter of 2011-12 (48 cm to Feb 10th) and the 2nd least snowfall to Feb 10th in at least 20 years. (On average, Winnipeg gets about 76 cm of snow by Feb 10th). Last winter, Winnipeg had seen 121 cm of snow by Feb 10th - over twice the amount this season - thanks in large part to the snowiest December in 58 years.  The meager snowfall this winter has boosted the city of Winnipeg's 2017 municipal budget surplus by another $6 million thanks to less than projected snowclearing operations.