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Forecast: Not much snow expected

Covering the period from December 23 to December 30

This map shows the total amount of precipitation that fell across the Prairies over the 30 days ending Dec. 16 as a percentage of the long-term average. It was a dry start to the winter across most of the agricultural Prairies, with only a few small areas seeing near-average amounts.

Usually by this time of the year we have settled into a predictable winter pattern. This year, winter has been struggling to take hold and as a result, the overall weather pattern is remaining fairly unpredictable. It looks like the weather for this holiday season is going to bounce around from above average to below average. The question is still up in the air: Which will win out more, the warm or the cold?

To begin this forecast period the weather models show a strong area of low pressure passing by well to our southeast and high pressure dropping southward through Saskatchewan. The combination of these two systems will bring sunny skies and cool temperatures with daytime highs around -14 C and overnight lows around -24 C.

By Christmas Day high pressure will be to our southeast while a strong area of low pressure will be sitting off the coast of B.C. This will help to pump mild air into our region. Temperatures look to rebound quickly, with daytime highs rising to around -5 C with overnight lows falling to around -12 C.

For much of the following week (Dec. 28-31) our region looks to be under the influence of a weak northwesterly flow. This will allow temperatures to cool down to around average. Within this flow, several weak areas of low pressure are forecast to track across our region. The timing of these lows is uncertain, but each low will bring the chance of some light snow with amounts looking to be less than a couple of centimetres with each system.

Looking further ahead, the weather models hint at a continuation of near- to above-average temperatures with only slight chances of snow — bad news for those hoping for a deep snowpack.

Usual temperature range for this period: Highs, -4 to -19 C; lows, -29 to -13 C.

About the author

Co-operator contributor

Daniel Bezte

Daniel Bezte is a teacher by profession with a BA (Hon.) in geography, specializing in climatology, from the U of W. He operates a computerized weather station near Birds Hill Park.

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