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Summer Forecast 2018

UPDATED: The next 2 months of summer weather in Canada

Dr. Doug Gillham
Meteorologist, PhD

Thursday, June 21, 2018, 11:34 AM - Thursday marks the first official day of summer, with many places across Canada already having experienced extreme heat. The question now is will it stick around, and will Atlantic Canada finally get in on that stretch of warm weather the rest of the country has been basking in? We take a look at what you can expect for the remainder of June, July, and August in The Weather Network’s updated 2018 Summer Forecast, below.


The 2018 Summer Forecast highlights a hot and dry summer for most of western Canada. Drought is a major concern  across parts of the Prairie provinces and wildfires will be growing concern later in the summer, especially across British Columbia and into the Prairies

Meanwhile, a stormy summer is expected across southern Ontario and southern Quebec. While we do not expect more rainy days than normal across this region, heavy rainfall at times will bring above normal totals to much of this region.

Keep in mind, though, that summer precipitation is notorious for being highly variable over short distances, and it is inevitable that localized areas will miss out on the showers and thunderstorms that occur in surrounding areas. In addition, localized storms can bring torrential rain to areas where drought dominates a season.


Quotable: "This summer looks to be a warmer version of the pattern we saw across Canada last year, with the hottest weather anchored over western Canada," Chris Scott, Chief Meteorologist at The Weather Network explains. "Ontario and Quebec will once again escape the hottest weather, but this summer will bring more heat than last summer. Atlantic Canada looks to have the best combination of conditions with a warm summer and near seasonal precipitation."

That is a quick overview of the nation, but SCROLL BELOW THE QUIZ for more details for each region of the country.

Provincial Analysis: British Columbia

Warmer than normal temperatures are expected this summer across British Columbia, especially during the second half of the season, when extended periods of hot weather are expected across the interior of the province. 

So far June has brought changeable conditions with alternating periods of cool and hot weather, along with some beneficial rain. The final days of June and early July will bring another period of cooler weather. However, hot weather is expected to become more consistent during the second half of the summer, and this will increase the risk of wildfires during late July, August and into September. 

Near normal precipitation is expected in the mountains with the typical summer thunderstorms that will bring torrential rain at times. Unfortunately, lightning from these storms can also ignite wildfires.

IMPORTANT VIDEO: Heat and drought concerns fuel B.C. forecast

In-Depth Analysis: Prairies

The first few weeks of June have brought much needed and widespread rainfall to this region. However, a drier pattern is expected to resume during July and August 

The well-timed rains during the first few weeks of June have greatly reduced, but not eliminated concerns that drought conditions will have an impact on agriculture. Despite the drier conditions during July and August, this region will still see a typical severe weather season, especially across western and central Alberta. Strong to severe thunderstorms will bring torrential rain to localized areas, but not the more widespread and steady rains that are more beneficial to agriculture.

July and August will also bring more consistent heat for Alberta and Saskatchewan. Manitoba will see temperatures swing back and forth that come close to offsetting each other, but there will be an increasing potential for shots of cooler weather during the second half of the season.

WATCH BELOW: Alberta cranks up the heat, but there's a drawback

In-Depth Analysis: Ontario & Quebec

A seasonably warm and occasionally stormy summer is forecast in southern Ontario and southern Quebec. Temperatures will be near normal across the region, except for areas around Hudson Bay, which should be cooler than normal. 

This region is expected to see more hot weather than last year, but we do not expect the persistent extreme heat that we saw two summers ago. This summer will be more changeable with periods of cooler weather. The most consistent hot weather is expected during the first half of summer, with an increasing potential for periods of cooler weather during the second half of July and August.

While we are forecasting above normal rain totals across southern Ontario and southern Quebec, we do not expect more rainy days than normal during the summer. The changeable pattern and the availability of abundant Gulf moisture increases the threat for thunderstorms, which bring substantial rain totals at times, but these storms also result in wide ranges in totals across a region. 

We have already seen this contrast in conditions during the first few weeks of June, with many areas wetter than normal from recent storms. Meanwhile, nearby locations keep missing the storms and have become exceptionally dry. 

WATCH BELOW: When it rains in Ontario, it pours. Details below

In-Depth Analysis: Atlantic Canada 

A cool start to the season during June should give way to more consistent warm weather during July and August. A humid summer is expected, which should result in warmer than normal temperatures at night, especially across southern areas.

While there will be periods of dry weather, periods of heavy showers and thunderstorms should bring rain totals to near normal for the season. The Weather Network’s team of meteorologists will also be keeping a close watch on the tropics, especially late in the summer and into the fall. 

WATCH BELOW: East Coast could have major ups and downs this summer

In-Depth Analysis: Northern Canada

A warm summer is forecast for the Yukon and parts of the Northwest Territories, while a cooler summer is expected for much of Nunavut. Wildfires and smoke will be growing concerns, especially for the Northwest Territories during July and August.


(Editor's note: This article was originally published on May 27, 2018 as part of The Weather Network's Summer Forecast launch. It has been updated to reflect new data.)

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