Forecast: Storm track setting up to our north

Covering the period from March 4 to March 11

This map shows the total amount of precipitation that fell during the 30 days ending Feb. 26 as a percentage of average. It was a very dry period across all of agricultural Manitoba and most of Saskatchewan, while most of Alberta experienced near- to above-average precipitation.

Last issue’s forecast did an OK job. It captured the overall pattern, but was a little off regarding temperatures and overpredicted the amount of snow with a weak area of low pressure.

This forecast period looks like it will be an interesting one. Weather models show the main storm track setting up across the central Canadian Prairies. With this setup we will see fairly mild air to the south of this track and cold air to the north. A shift of a few hundred kilometres either north or south could have a big impact on our weather.

That said, here is what the weather models are showing. The first in a series of lows is forecast to track across the central Prairies on Thursday and Friday, bringing a mix of sun and clouds to southern and central regions along with strong southerly winds and mild temperatures. Look for daytime highs to be around the freezing mark, with overnight lows in the -8 C range. Over the weekend, arctic high pressure will try to drop southward, but it looks like a developing area of low pressure will deflect the core of the cold temperatures to our north and east. This low is forecast to push northeast on Sunday, bringing a chance of measurable snow to southern and especially central regions.

The next area of low pressure is forecast to track in off the Pacific on Monday, then track across northern regions on Tuesday and Wednesday. This will allow mild air to move back into both southern and central regions, with daytime highs pushing above freezing and overnight lows only dropping to around -5 C.

Further ahead, it looks like arctic air will try to sag south behind this mid-week low, but just like earlier, another area of low pressure looks set to develop and to help keep the coldest air from making it into our region.

Usual temperature range for this period: Highs, -13 to -1 C; lows, -26 to -10 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.



Stories from our other publications