Well doesn’t quite feel like a heatwave, but on paper its quite the above normal thaw period. For example Ottawa will have a high temperatures around 2 – 4c and overnights low around -4c to 0c the next 5 days. The normal high is -6c and a low of -16c! That’s like 10 to 12 degrees above normal; if it was July we would be sweating!
There is a weak front coming through Friday night into Saturday morning that brings showers to Southern Ontario and a chance of light freezing rain in central Ontario up to North Bay and over to the Ottawa valley. Not a huge impact storm.
All this warmth doesn’t mean we are out of chances for snow, particularly for Eastern Ontario and Southern Quebec. A storm has been on the models for a number of days for Monday night into Tuesday January 24th. It’s finally starting to show some consistent runs that the low will ride up the US east coast and spread wet snow into Ottawa and Eastern Ontario. How much and how strong is yet to be determined until we get a little closer, but there is a chance it could be 10 cms or over. It depends if the storm moves more to the coast or comes back further west on the next couple model runs. Temperature around the time of the storm will be near 0c so if there isn’t enough cold air available in the upper atmosphere we could end up with freezing rain. Right now I’m leaning to wet snow.
Here is the GFS model interpretation:
The treat currently looks to impact point East of the GTA. Locations further south and west will either miss the storm or be too warm at the surface for snow.
Behind this storm, there is another Colorado low targeting southern Ontario for Wed. January 25th into the 26th. Still too early to say if it will be snow or rain or how strong, but Eastern Ontario is again being targeted for wet snow at this point.
So with this warmth, does that mean winter is over?
Sorry spring lovers, unfortunately not. Winter is set to return after January 27th as the upper atmosphere pattern switches again back to more Arctic air supply and less Pacific air that we are currently enjoy as the ridge out west deteriorates.
That means that February is looking colder and closer to normal with some more chances for snow.