Sunday, 23 March 2014

Warming trend on the horizon for Montreal

Saturdays snowfall was heavy but thankfully of short duration, dumping 10-15cm of snow here on L'Ile Perrot, 
across Montreal and into the Ottawa Valley. (Valley Weather Photo)
We have an active week of weather ahead for many portions of the country but it will end with a definite warming trend and feeling like spring. Montreal had a rather quick but heavy snowfall on Saturday with close to 15cm of wet snow falling in just a few hours over most of the region including Cornwall and the Ottawa Valley. The snow started around 8am and was over by 2pm in Montreal with sunshine talking over for late in the day. The snow created the usual problems on Quebec roads with two major accidents affecting Highway 20 near Quebec City. The system was followed by very cold air and gusty winds for Sunday and that cold will prevail until Tuesday. Temperatures will be well below normal with lows near -18C and highs no better than -5C.

By late Tuesday a very strong low pressure area will form near the Carolina coast and race northeast towards Atlantic Canada. This will be an intense ocean storm remaining offshore of New England with high winds near hurricane force, heavy surf and snow. It looks like all of the weather associated with this storm will stay away from southern Quebec with just a few flurries and a gusty north wind expected. This will not be the case in Nova Scotia, PEI and New Brunswick where a full fledged spring blizzard is likely on Wednesday. What this storm will do for all of us is create a major pattern shift with the polar jet lifting back north of Montreal and allowing some much needed mild air into the region. Temperatures by next weekend will go well above freezing to plus 8C with rain likely. This trend will continue into the first week of April with lots of melting expected. Lets hope we have seen the last of winter 2013-2014.

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