Steve's WunderBlog

Canadian Weather Blog #11

By: SteveDa1, 8:51 PM GMT on December 15, 2006

Something very unusual happened today for my region. We had a thunderstorm! No typo. Winds were pretty strong, very heavy rain and I saw about 5 flashes of lightning. Impressive by December standards. I never saw a thunderstorm here on December 15th. Here is a RADAR picture from the middle of T-storm showing where I live as well...


A storm hitting the Pacific coast of Canada and the United States has killed three people in Washington state.
Heavy rain and winds gusting at more than 90mph (145km/h) caused flooding and knocked down power lines leaving thousands without electricity.

A 41-year-old woman drowned in Seattle, Washington, while two people in the state were killed in traffic accidents blamed on wind-toppled trees.

It is the third storm to hit parts of the region in the last week.

Morning traffic was thrown into confusion in both Seattle and Vancouver, British Columbia, as officials closed bridges due to the high winds.

Falling trees knocked down electricity lines, causing a loss of power to about one million utility customers in both Canada and the US.

BC Hydro said crews on Vancouver Island were still struggling to repair damage from an earlier storm.

The storm had begun to calm by Friday morning, but snow was expected at lower elevations.

Updated: 8:54 PM GMT on December 15, 2006


Canadian Weather Blog #10

By: SteveDa1, 3:49 AM GMT on December 12, 2006

I found some interesting information on Canada while going through the Meteorological Service of Canada website.

The autumn of 2006 (Sep, Oct, Nov) was the 13th warmest on record since 1948, so it has cooled down a bit especially in the prairies. The arctic was by far the warmest with spots 5C or more above normal! Overall, however, the country was 1.0C above normal. This doesn't compare to the warmest winter on record (2005-2006, last winter) where temperatures were an average of 3.9C above normal! The past 11 months have truly been warm with last winter and last spring being the warmest on record and with summer the second warmest. The warmest autumn was 1998 (+2.4C) and 1986 (-1.8C) was the coolest.

As for precipitation, the country was 4.2% wetter than normal making it the 27th wettest since record-keeping began in 1948. "It should be noted that "normal" precipitation in northern Canada is generally much less than it is in southern Canada, and hence a percent departure in the north represents much less difference in actual precipitation than the same percentage in the south. The national precipitation rankings are therefore often skewed by the northern departures and do not represent rankings for the volume of water falling on the country." The southern prairies and the St-Lawrence - Great Lakes region were wet this autumn. Northern Ontario and the Northern Prairies were dry. The wettest autumn was 1981 (+24.1%) and the driest was 1976 (-20.3%).

More info HERE.



Canadian Weather Blog #9

By: SteveDa1, 6:16 PM GMT on December 11, 2006

Once again BC is the center of attention as is usually the case this time of year...

BC storm parade:
A lot of rain and wind this week for the west coast. A series of storms will slam the coast bringing heavy rains and strong winds with heavy mountain snow; great for skiers!
Of course this isn't anything unusual, it's that time of year where it just rains and rains. The first storm is already bringing rain, snow and winds to BC. The second one, which will be stronger than the first, will come ashore on wednesday morning. A third one is still developping and is expected to reach the coast later this week. Figure 1 shows a satellite image of the northeastern Pacific and I have marked the storms centers with a small red square. The systems don't just decipate once they reach BC, obviously, they travel across the country bringing unsettled weather with it. Once these storms cross the rockies, however, they lose much of their power... This Pattern also brings mild weather across the whole country as shown in Figure 2 with the CMC 10-day mean temperature forecast. If you look at my last update, more models are shown. Only exception to that is BC because of the constant cloud cover due to storms.

Figure 1 (Sattelite image showing storms in northeastern Pacific):

Figure 2 (10-day mean temperature forecast for Canada (CMC)):

Montreal Forecast from Environment Canada:
Today: Cloudy. High plus 4.
Tonight: Cloudy. Clearing overnight. Low minus 8.
Tuesday: Sunny with cloudy periods. Wind northeast 20 km/h becoming: light late in the day. High zero.
Wednesday: Showers. Low minus 3. High 6.
Thursday: Cloudy. Low plus 2. High 6.
Friday: Periods of rain. Low zero. High plus 3.

Toronto Forecast:
Today: Cloudy. High 7.
Tonight: Cloudy. 60 percent chance of showers overnight. Low plus 3.
Tuesday: Cloudy with sunny periods. 60 percent chance of showers early in the morning. Wind east 20 km/h becoming south 20 late in the day. High 8.
Wednesday: Showers. Windy. Low plus 1. High 8.
Thursday: Cloudy. Windy. Low plus 2. High 6.
Friday: Cloudy with 60 percent chance of showers. Low plus 3. High 7.

Figure 3 (British Columbia Warnings):

PURPLE = Wind warning
RED DOTTED PURPLE = Wind and Rainfall Warning
Wind expected to reach 70-80 km/h with gusts up to 100 km/h. Rainfall expected to be more than 50mm in warning areas with this storm.


Canadian Weather Blog #8

By: SteveDa1, 6:39 PM GMT on December 09, 2006

Information on the London Snowstorm:

London News

London will be digging out today after one of the biggest snowstorms in its history crippled traffic, shut down businesses and left thousands stuck at home yesterday.

47 centimetres of snow - even more in some areas -in 17 hours and caught many people off guard.

"We haven't seen a snowstorm like this since 1978"

All elementary and high schools in London and the region were closed. For city kids, it was the first snow day off school in more than 25 years and the first time the entire Thames Valley district school board -- one of Ontario's largest -- and the London District Catholic school board had shut down in more than a decade. (They don't get many snow days!)

Many people in eastern Canada could have a snowless christmas. Models are predicting above normal temperatures for the remainder of December because of a pacific flow dominating. If so it would be, I think, my first snowless christmas... Figure 1 shows the temperature anomalies for Canada up to the end of December. Not looking good for snow-lovers. Strong El-Nino conditions developping are responsible for this predicted warmth. This could be a winter-that-wasn't for the southern tier of Canada just like 1997-1998.

Figure 1 (anomalies predicted for remainder of December across Canada by the CFS model):

Figure 2 (just look at the anomaly map for the next 7 days according to GFS):


Canadian Weather Blog #7

By: SteveDa1, 9:46 PM GMT on December 07, 2006

I haven't updated this blog in a while due to shortage of time.

Southern Ontario and Southern Quebec:
Roller Coaster pattern past couple of days across the east. The warmth ahead of the Alberta Clipper was enough to change the snow to rain in some parts of eastern Ontario and southern Quebec. Behing the cold front, significant lake-effect snowfall is develloping. There could be locally 30-50cm (12-20in) of snow before it stops tomorrow in the warning areas (Figure 1). Radar of the intense snow squalls (Figure 2) and in some locations the snow is coming down at rates of 2-4cm (1-2in) an hour and will likely intensify as the day goes on. The cold will be short lived because by sunday it will be back to normal and even above normal. For example the temperature right now in Montreal is 0C (32F), tomorrow it is expected to be no higher than -9C (15.8F) while back to +2C (35.6F) on Saturday!

Figure 1 (warnings as of 4:00PM for southern Ontario):

WHITE = Snowquall Warning

Figure 2 (RADAR; Exeter, Ontario station):

Newfoundland Rain:
A good soaking is on the way for south-central and eastern Newfoundland. Warnings shown in Figure 3 below. 50mm is expected to fall starting overnight into Friday.

Figure 3 (warnings as of 4:00PM local for Newfoundland):

GREEN = Rainfall Warning

Prairie Warmup:
Alberta and Saskatchewan are really warming up where temperatures will range from -5C(23F) to +10C(50F) until at least Monday. Even Yellowknife and Whitehorse will are feeling it where temperatures are around 0C(32F) as of now. Much warmer than what it was like in November that's for sure! Basically the whole country will be at or above-normal this week-end and later on. A pacific flow is setting up allowing mild air for all of the southern-half of Canada blocking arctic air.

Figure 4 (North America Surface Map):


The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

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