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Falling freezing levels bring snow to the B.C. coasts this weekend

Friday, January 22nd 2021, 7:30 pm - The really substantial accumulations will be at higher elevations, but freezing levels are low enough to bring some flakes even to parts of Metro Vancouver.

Cooler temperatures, lowering freezing levels and an incoming system look to combine to bring some snow very near the coasts in British Columbia this weekend, with a few flakes even possible for parts of Metro Vancouver this weekend, though higher amounts will be further inland. It begins overnight Saturday through to Sunday night, before giving way to a quieter start for the next week. For a closer look, see below.


WEATHER HIGHLIGHTS

  • Freezing levels down to 300 metres by the weekend
  • Snow begins overnight Saturday, continues into Sunday, coastal areas may see just rain or a rain/snow mix
  • Relatively quiet next week, unsettled chance

WEEKEND: LOW FREEZING LEVELS BRING SNOW NEAR THE COASTS

With temperatures on the downward trend toward the weekend, freezing levels are on a similar trajectory, set to reach 300-400 metres – meaning an incoming system is set to bring snowfall to a large swath of communities on Vancouver Island and the South Coast.

It begins overnight Saturday into Sunday, with wet snow very near the coasts in many areas. Places along southern Vancouver Island and much of Metro Vancouver near sea-level look to remain mostly as rain, with a rain/snow mix in places like Richmond and Delta, but northern and eastern parts of the metro, at higher elevations, may stay mostly as snow for this event.

BC pecip

Those lower-elevation or near sea-level areas that see snow begin the day are likely to switch over to rain or a rain/snow mix as the day wears on. Higher than 300 metres, this will largely be a primarily snowfall event inland, including the lower Fraser Valley, where some 5-10 cm is possible over the course of this system.

Deeper into the southern Interior, there will be very little, if any, snow, given that though there will be abundant cold, there will be little moisture to work with.

BC snow

The system's effects look to taper off into early Monday morning.

NEXT WEEK: QUIETER, BUT SOME CHANCE OF UNSETTLED WEATHER LATE-WEEK

Freezing levels rise again after this system passes, and much of the next week looks relatively quiet, though there's a chance of some unsettled weather later in the week and into the weekend.

"Colder than seasonal temperatures will dominate through the end of January – no signs of any significant warm weather that would negatively impact ski areas," Weather Network meteorologist Dr. Doug Gillham said Thursday.

Check back as we continue to watch the weekend forecast.

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