Thursday, March 19th 2020, 5:40 am - Spring is notorious for bringing changeable weather and this year will be no exception.
March is living up to its reputation of bringing wild temperature swings and sharp contrasts in temperature across Canada.
Most residents of Canada have enjoyed periods of mild weather during March with just brief shots of colder weather, but parts of western Canada have also experienced a period of severe mid-winter cold and significant snow. Newfoundland has also seen periods of mid-winter like weather.
The map below shows temperature anomalies since March 1st. The various shades of orange and red highlight the warmer than normal temperatures that have dominated from Manitoba to the Maritimes. On the other hand, the various shades of blue and green highlight the colder than normal temperatures that have been found across B.C., Alberta, Newfoundland and parts of northern Canada.
What can we expect for the rest of March, April and May? Please read on!
NATIONAL TEMPERATURE PATTERN
Spring will continue to feature the changeable weather that we typically experience during this season of transition from winter to summer. Periods of warmer than normal weather are likely across the country, but interruptions will test our patience at times.
For much Canada, these alternating periods of warm and cold weather will offset each other with near-normal temperatures for the remainder of March, April and May as a whole.
For the eastern half of Canada, this means a warmer spring than the past two years. However, colder than normal weather is expected to be more dominant from northern Saskatchewan to western Labrador and for parts of Nunavut and the Northwest Territories. Meanwhile, temperatures are expected to tip to the warm side of normal across western British Columbia, Yukon and parts of southwestern Ontario.
NATIONAL PRECIPITATION PATTERN
Most of Canada is expected to see either near-normal or above-normal precipitation during the spring season. At this point we do not see any long-range signals pointing to widespread dry conditions but we are closely monitoring parts of the southern Prairies which have had a dry conclusion to the winter season.
Wetter than normal weather is expected this spring from the Great Lakes region to the Maritimes. We continue to include parts of southern Manitoba and northwestern Ontario in the “wetter than normal” region, but forecast confidence in this region is lower.
Below is a more detailed look at the conditions that we expect for each region across Canada during the remainder of March, April and May.
Spring typically comes first to this part of Canada, but so far spring is off to a sluggish start with colder than normal temperatures dominating through March and possibly continuing into early April. However, temperatures are expected to be near seasonal or slightly above seasonal for most of April and May. When warmer weather does arrive, we will have to closely monitor the risk for spring flooding due to the abundance of snow in the alpine regions.
While March has been dry so far, precipitation is expected to be closer to normal during late March through May.