The Weather Network today released its Winter Forecast for the months of December, January and February predicting what Canadians can expect during the country’s harshest season. As temperatures cool and hats and gloves come out of retirement, the question top of mind for many is whether it will be a cold and stormy winter like the past two years, or if a reprieve is in store.
“Canadians can expect a relatively mild winter in comparison to the last two years, especially in areas hardest hit during the past few winter seasons. This doesn’t mean winter is cancelled completely, only that Canadians will see fewer bouts of severe cold weather,” said Chris Scott, Chief Meteorologist at The Weather Network. “As El Niño conditions strengthen into one of the strongest we’ve seen in 60 years, it brings a tendency for above normal temperatures to dominate Southern Canada in early winter. However, unique characteristics of this El Niño mean potential for more sustained winter conditions emerging during Central and Eastern Canada in the second half of the season.”
The country’s warmest temperatures relative to normal will be found from B.C. to Northern Ontario, whereas Southern Ontario to Atlantic Canada should see temperatures average out closer to normal. Milder temperature patterns in general mean fewer than normal lake effect snow events and that most storms should bring a variety of precipitation types rather than just snow, resulting in less snowfall on the ground compared with last winter. This is especially the case for Atlantic Canada which will likely see more storms that bring a messy mix of rain, snow and ice in comparison to last year’s historic amounts of snow.