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A mysterious fog has shrouded Newfoundland for days. Here's why

Friday, April 9th 2021, 2:56 pm - According to the Farmer's Almanac, the off-coast Grand Banks region in Newfoundland is the world’s foggiest area.

Cape Spear's iconic lighthouse normally cuts through the thickest Newfoundland weather.

It's the most eastern point in continental North America, and these days you can't even see it from shore.

A relentless blanket of mist has enshrouded swaths of the island this week, refusing to budge. It's led to tweets of caution from nervous drivers, memes, and — for some — a disappointing Easter break.

CBC fog newfoundland Fog descended on parts of Newfoundland days ago and it's still here. (Jeremy Eaton/CBC)

Jack Sharpe was getting bored inside, hiding from the rain during his week off school.

"We decided that we would go for a little picnic up here," he said, nestled in the back of his mom's SUV, playing games and trying to glimpse the ocean through the fog.

(Jeremy Eaton/CBC) The Sharpe family had planned to eat their picnic on a bench, but found the back of their car a little cozier. (Jeremy Eaton/CBC)

"It's a really white wall in front of you," he said. "You can't see through it. You can't see the water. You can barely see the rocks."

A few cars away, clusters of teenagers also wanted out of the house on their time off.

Emma MacIsaac was betting on an awe-inspiring backdrop to document her latest dance moves.

CBC NFL FOG Emma MacIsaac, right, wasn't getting much dancing done from the back seat of this car. (Jeremy Eaton/CBC)

"We came up just for a drive, and were making some TikToks," she said, referring to videos on a popular social media site. "There wasn't much of a view — it's kind of all grey."

Other internet creators leapt at the meteorological aberration.

Newfoundland might boast the world's foggiest area (the off-coast Grand Banks region, according to the Farmer's Almanac), but it usually doesn't hang around the island for this long.

That makes the dreary spring visitor kind of a perfect target.

(Townie Memes/Facebook) Memes like this one have popped up in response to days without seeing blue skies. (Townie Memes/Facebook)

But where did it come from, and why won't it leave?

CBC meteorologist Ashley Brauweiler explains this particular breed of mist is known as a "Rex block," or more scientifically, advection fog.

"High pressure is sitting south of Greenland, and a low pressure system is sitting south of the Maritimes, with nowhere to go because the ridge of high pressure is in the way," Brauweiler said.

"Until that ridge moves, the low will sit there and funnel all of the moisture our way in easterly winds."

So all that warm, moist air moving over a cold ocean cools the air to its dew point, forming clouds and leaving Newfoundlanders, well, making memes and waiting for it all to clear.

With files from Jeremy Eaton

This article was originally published by CBC News.

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