Thursday, July 18th 2019, 10:36 am - This is a jet stream for the record books and its consequences are...snowy!
There's no benchmark for a jet stream this strong roaring across western Canada in the middle of July. With such a cold upper trough and racing upper level winds in the middle of July, this could bring some snowy consequences to parts of western Canada to round out this week.
If you were to show any meteorologist across the country the satellite imagery above, they'd guess the season was fall or winter. In fact, if this jet stream would to occur during the fall or winter months, it's entirely possible it could create a severe wind storm for the Pacific Northwest.
This is quite the active storm track with ample moisture pushing into British Columbia and reminiscent of a fall pattern – but no, it's now, the heart of July.
Weather Balloons on Thursday will sample air moving at over 200 km/h across southern British Columbia and Washington State. If you don't believe it, watch the video below to see just how far of an outlier that is:
Not only are the upper level winds off the charts, the temperatures aloft are near climatological minimums. Just five or so kilometres above sea level, temperatures are forecast to be closer to -25°C, a formidable achievement in summer.
What does that mean? In short, high elevation snow is on the way to the Coastal Mountain range through Thursday, with the Columbia and Rocky Mountains continuing that snowy trend through Friday.
The highest peaks across the Rockies will feature in excess of 10 cm of summery powder, but we're expecting all mountain passes across the region will remain free from accumulating snow. One would at least hope, in the middle of July.
The sharp trough and powerful winds aloft also will create a severe thunderstorm threat on Friday across central Alberta, while snow falls simultaneously a few hundred kilometres to the southeast.
Welcome to Canada.