Sunday, July 26, 2015

Storm Systems Merging Overnight - Extremely Dangerous Situation On Monday

All signs are pointing to a very dangerous situation on Monday across southern Saskatchewan and southern Manitoba. Heavy rains, flash flooding, large amounts of precipitation are expected from Swift Current to Brandon starting early in the morning from nocturnal thunderstorms that may become strong to severe late tonight. Strong tornadic supercells are expected along the North Dakota/Saskatchewan/Manitoba borders early in the afternoon. Systems from Alberta will be moving quickly eastward while Manitoban storms will drop south and collect in a back-building formation in North Dakota. By early afternoon, it is expected both systems will come together over south eastern Saskatchewan with strong tornadic supercells moving north across the border from North Dakota.

Please monitor Environment Canada Warnings closely. This may become a very dangerous situation. Forecast models may change locations drastically overnight depending on how things line up. Have a safety plan ready but remember, this is only a forecast. Updates to the risk area map will be posted as required and please remember to keep reports to a workable minimum with accuracy of location and size of hail using coins or measuring device in photos. Rapid rotation reports are always best served with a short video when in a safe location.

Here is the forecast map for this evening and overnight with tomorrow's expected outlook "Day 2":

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Updated Risk Map - 2:30pm - Severe Weather Outbreak In Progress

Here is the updated risk map as of 2:30pm:

Just after noon time in Calgary and flurry of funnel cloud reports came in. As of right now, the main system has exited city of Calgary and is still growing and moving east. No confirmed tornado touch downs but many photos suggested it very close. Large hail and downpours were also reported.

Here is a zoomed in view of Calgary radar as of 1:50pm - Two dangerous areas, both seem to be rotating on radar. Northern circle is much wider/slower, while the southern circle is the funnel producers with much tighter/faster rotation and the main area to watch. South east corner of a east bound tornadic supercell is usually where it will produce tubes.

Twitter #abstorm highlights from earlier this afternoon:

Tons more can be seen via the #abstorm feed on the right side of this page.

Also, the latest updates will be posted on our Facebook page.
Please like, share, comment and post your footage when safe to do so.

Storms are moving east and expected to continue all afternoon and late into the evening.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Today's Outlook Map [Moderate Risk] - Plus: Yesterday's Summary Of Events

Here is today's severe weather outlook map:

Storms should begin to fire up early this afternoon and last late into the evening. Large hail and damaging wind gust will be the main feature of today's storms.

Yesterday afternoon, storms started extremely strong with two main cells (Lethbridge and Edson) both going purple on radar from the beginning and producing reports of hail the size of golf balls or slightly larger. After initiation, these storms morphed into a linear MCS (mesoscale convective system) producing intense lightning and incredible shelf structure, losing most severe qualities before hitting the city of Edmonton.

REMINDER: When reporting hail to #abstorm #skstorm please use a measuring tape, ruler, coins or golf ball, baseball, softball, etc.. Accuracy in measurement is very important in determining potential damage and risk to future regions. Photos of holding hail in your hands is not acceptable as people have different sized hands. Another common mistake is reporting marble size hail. Marbles also come in various sizes. If it is very small hail, please report as pea size.

***The best way to report is taking a photo with a measuring tape held beside the hail stones***

Here are some tweets of the action in Alberta last night:

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Nice Looking Waterspout In Manitoba Today.

Incorrectly being reported as a tornado, this is a beautiful waterspout. See Weather Glossary below.

A waterspout was photographed today over Interlakes in southern Manitoba. At no point was it over land so this is a confirmed waterspout.

Environment Canada's Weather Glossary:
"A waterspout is a rotating column of vapour and water which extends from thundercloud to the water's surface. A waterspout looks like a tornado but is much smaller and weaker. The diameter of a waterspout ranges from seven to 20 metres and its winds from 40 to 80 kilometres per hour which is strong enough to flip a boat. A waterspout may last up to 10 minutes. Waterspouts, for the most part, form over some of the major lakes of southern Canada during periods of cool, unsettled weather, usually from mid-summer to mid-fall."

Thursday, July 16, 2015

July 16, 2015 - Severe Thunderstorm Hits Regina [Four Videos]

A very busy day around the province of Saskatchewan started with juicy forecasts and lots of anticipation.

Just after noon as the hot sunshine peaked, southern gulf stream appeared and the cold front began to threaten, storms started to fire off, all across central Saskatchewan. With temperatures of only +8C in Cypress Hills and +15C in Kindersley, the heat wave finally met its match, knocking down weeks long 30 degree days. From northern Saskatchewan which collected large piles of small hail, supercells quickly filtered south. Warman was first with nearly 1 inch or toonie size hail. Then, another new set of cells formed further south with Davidson reporting gold ball size hail. Between 2 and 3pm, the entire province filled out with clusters of supercells. Two were seen east of Regina as captured in our timelapse video. Then just as things seemed to clear out, the weather radio blared out an alert and a sudden storm cell popped up right over the city of Regina.  Luckily no major damages here but more storms are forecast again tomorrow, further east.

Wascana Lake Storm Timelapse (15 minutes in 15 seconds)

Today's Outlook Map - Dangerous Weather Ahead!

Current conditions are showing a lot of potential with a strengthening southern gulf stream, cold front coming in from the west and lots of rain in the north. Prairie and Arctic Storm Prediction Centre mentions a possibility of tornadic supercells south west of Saskatoon later today. Otherwise, a straight line damaging wind event with supercells associated with the cold front will cross the province of Saskatchewan very quickly and land in southern Manitoba over night. Large hail and heavy rains are expected further north. Please head all warnings and take precautions. Loose objects should be secured, now and candles gathered/phones charged. This is a serious situation! Storms may not begin until late in the day but when they do, they are expected to cause damages with power outages likely in highly populated regions of Saskatchewan.

Here is the latest outlook map:

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Today's Outlook

Prairie Storm Prediction Centre has removed the tornado wording from its 2pm forecast update. As well, the RAP forecast model has suggested the tornado threat has passed for today. The NAM is usually a little bolder and over done as a forecast model and keeps a slight chance of tornadoes open. Both, agree that supercells will be active over much of southern Manitoba today creeping a bit into south eastern Saskatchewan. Central Alberta will see active thunderstorms as well. Mainly heavy rain, large hail and strong to damaging winds.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

This Week's Outlook/NEW Government Issued Twitter Alerts

Environment Canada announced today that they have officially created Twitter accounts for each weather region in Canada. You can see the list at the link provided below as well as the official news release.

Follow and turn on mobile notifications here:

Twitter Accounts by Province/Territory

Regina currently has 104 followers
Saskatoon 60
La Ronge 4
Moose Jaw 42
Calgary 178
Edmonton 152
Toronto 199
Montreal (E) 91
Montreal (F) 170
Winnipeg 45
Vancouver 55
Lillooet 3
Halifax 49

 Let's get these number up! Get informed.

Here is today's severe weather outlook map:

Storms are expected to become more organized and strengthen beginning later today. Stronger storms on Wednesday through Friday with a possible moderate risk for southern Manitoba.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Central Saskatchewan Storms

Storms have been building all morning around the Regina area and just after 11am the lightning detector began to burst with numbers. Strikes per minute climbed from 60 to 90 to 120 to 220 in the span of about 15 minutes. Here is a screen grab from NWR Weather Lightning Detection as of 11:22am:

These thunderstorms have extreme heights of 50k foot tops which gives them huge power and potential for very large hail and heavy downpours to go along with intense lightning. Here are the echo tops as of noon:

Today's Severe Weather Forecast Map:

Friday, July 03, 2015

Massive Supercell Exploding Right Now Over Meadow Lake!

Many other cells now popping up further south towards Saskatoon and into south central Alberta. Here is a look at the current Echo Tops radar as of 2:10pm:

Updated risk area map:

Closely monitor Environment Canada warnings if in the risk area and take cover if a storm approaches. These storms will be damaging and dangerous. Stay safe!

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Big Storms On Friday And Saturday

As the forest fire smoke thickens once again over southern Saskatchewan, a major change in the weather patterns is about to occur. Today's northerly smoke filled winds will shift from the south on Friday, bringing heat and moisture to the prairies. Already like a simmering pot of soup, the air will be ripe for supercell thunderstorms to take over the weather picture for the next two days.

On Friday, central and southern areas of Alberta will be the focus of very high CAPE values (Convective Available Potential Energy), combined with a south east wind and a cold front diving in from the north the mix will be potent and result in some very strong thunderstorms with super cell structure, damaging winds and very large hail.

Here is the preliminary forecast map that may be upgraded or downgraded depending on the situation:

*Forecast models are not in agreement as the NAM is suggesting a major widespread event and the GFS is forecasting a much more subdued storm complex. Again, forest fire smoke could factor in and limit convection but we will have to keep on the safe side and calls em like we sees em...

Here is the map for Saturday, again things may not be as they seem to suggest:

As always, stay safe, be prepared and stay tuned to weather radios and Environment Canada watches, warnings and weather advisories.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Tornado Warning In Manitoba [Moderate Risk Outlook Map]

Areas in south eastern Manitoba are in the moderate risk zone for severe weather this afternoon and into the evening. A tornado warning has just been issued:

2:23 PM CDT Saturday 27 June 2015
Tornado warning in effect for:
  • R.M. of Dufferin including Carman Roseisle and Homewood
Updated or ended by 3:15 p.m. CDT.

At 2:23 p.m. CDT, Environment Canada meteorologists are tracking a severe thunderstorm that is possibly producing a tornado. Damaging winds, large hail and locally intense rainfall are also possible.

Doppler radar indicates a potential tornado near Roseisle moving 40km/h southeast.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Severe Thunderstorms With Flash Flooding [Today's Outlook Map]

There are some big storms popping up all over eastern and central Saskatchewan including Manitoba this afternoon. With extreme heat to the west, and high CAPE values, these slow moving, high topped storms will produce a lot of local rain which could result in flash flooding. Storms are expected to persist late into the evening where a chance of tornadoes exists around sundown.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Weak Tornadic Storms Today, Bigger Ones Friday...

Tornado Warnings have been issued in southern Manitoba this afternoon with confirmation of at least one touchdown.

The storms today are are very slow moving, mostly rain event type with some possible spin ups of weak tornadoes. There will be no map today, keeping with the consistent model forecasts of scattered non-severe thunderstorms. If any damage occurs from these cells, it will be a possible tipped lawn chair and a lot of rain. Flash flooding should be the main concern today.

Friday on the other hand, looks to be quite active for stronger type supercell thunderstorms that can cause widespread damage. Here is a look at the difference between the NAM forecast model for 9pm this evening and 9pm Friday evening. This is the forecast "supercell composite":

Wednesday 9pm Supercell Composite

Friday 9pm Supercell Composite

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Storms Moving Into Manitoba Today

After a very active day yesterday, systems are pushing east into Manitoba. Today's storms are not expected to be tornadic or have very organized supercellularities thus, the slight risk is only for gusty winds, small hail, intense lighting and heavy rains. After today, if anything severe, the rest of next week is forecast to have general to marginal thunder showers and nothing very severe until closer to Canada Day. July 1st to 3rd is looking like the next big system at the height of storm season on the Canadian Prairies. Plan accordingly and as always, be prepared and stay safe!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Storm Chasing Action via Mountain Bike!

Regina, Saskatchewan

June 19, 2015

5:50pm to 6:30pm

Began to see nice structure by the stadium construction site. At Dewdey and Lewvan Drive, I decided I had gone far enough as a rain and hail shaft began to appear! Initially, radar had indicated that it was moving slowly south east (15km/hr), making for an easy chase by bike. But suddenly, the line of cells began to wrap around and the south end rapidly flew across the city (after analysis at home, calculated it clocked up to 60km/hr and became tornado warned just 70km east of the city). Rode the storm home in 20 minutes via mountain bike! Some footage shot in action as i strapped the camera to my back and booked it towards safety! Now that's storm chasing! Pea size hail and a brief heavy downpour as I got home. Barely got wet.

Storm Chasing By Mountain Bike Today - Photos - 7pm Tornado Warning

Began to see nice structure by the stadium construction site. At Dewdey and Lewvan Drive, I decided I had gone far enough. Rode the storm home in 20 minutes via mountain bike! Now thats storm chasing! Pea size hail and downpour as I got home. Barely got wet.

[scroll down for warning] 

...and now:
7:00 PM CST Friday 19 June 2015
Tornado warning in effect for:
  • R.M. of Francis including Vibank Sedley and Odessa
  • R.M. of Indian Head including Indian Head and Sintaluta
  • R.M. of Montmartre including Assiniboine Res.
Updated or ended by 7:59 p.m. CST.

At 7:00 p.m. CST, Environment Canada meteorologists are tracking a severe thunderstorm that is possibly producing a tornado. Damaging winds, large hail and locally intense rainfall are also possible.

Weather radar indicates a potential tornado approximately 15 km south-southwest of Indian Head. This storm is travelling to the southeast at approximately 50 km/h. The storm will track southeastwards to the north of Highway 48.

Severe Weather Outlook Today

Strong storms are expected to fire up early today before noon across much of southern Saskatchewan. This includes a low probability of tornadoes, 2% in the Regina area and 5% along the international border. There is some dispute among forecast models with the NAM calling for a more widespread event from the Yellowhead Highway south and into Manitoba while other models are saying storms will be confined to south of the Number One Highway in Saskatchewan. The undisputed biggest risk remains further south into the Dakotas where SPC is calling for an "enhanced" risk with a large area projected for tornadic action.

The main focus here will be in southern Saskatchewan as many areas could be hearing thunder and seeing large dumps of rain. Possible flash flooding locally and small to moderate sized hail. Damaging winds are not expected but can not be ruled out in stronger cells with the odd weak tornado. If anything, stay up to date with current advisories and watches, keep weather radios and cell phones charged, and always be prepared!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Three Days Of Severe Thunderstorms

There is expected to be some severe weather along southern areas of the Canadian Prairies to end the week, starting this afternoon in southern Alberta. The main feature of these storms will be large hail and damaging winds. Much stronger storms will remain south of the international border. Storms will move east Friday and Saturday into south eastern Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Quiet Pattern For Prairies, Hurricane Forming In The Gulf

Long term forecast models are suggesting no significant storm systems for at least the next 2 weeks. Meanwhile tropical storm forecasters are giving an 80% chance the low pressure system in the Gulf of Mexico will turn into a tropical storm. This quiet pattern is normal on the prairies during September at the height of tropical storm season. So while we wait for storms to come back to the prairies in July, there very well could be the makings of a major hurricane event much further south.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Today's Outlook Map: Manitoba #mbstorm

Strong thunderstorms exit the prairies tonight as this system pushes across Manitoba. A large complex of storms in north central parts of the province will feed a long line towards the south western border and this thin line of storms will have severe cells that track all the way east into the evening. Large hail, damaging winds gusts and heavy rain will be the main features.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Active Day Ahead: #SkStorm #MbStorm [Risk Map]

Areas along the Saskatchewan/Manitoba border are seeing remnants of last nights nocturnals this morning and this system of rain is expected to feed strong thunderstorms further south west into southern Saskatchewan. Strong daytime heating in the south combined with high humidities and a vigorous "Gulf Stream" (Gulf of Mexico southerly winds) along the SK/MAN border will kick off very strong storms in the Yorkton region of south east Saskatchewan. Later this afternoon, storm cells will spread all the way west into the Lethbridge area of southern Alberta with a risk of becoming severe. Heavy rains including a risk of flash flooding, large hail and strong winds are to be expected in severe level cells. If in these areas of risk, remember to check Environment Canada for updated alerts and keep your weather radio close by. Stay safe!

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Supercells in Alberta and Saskatchewan [Updated Risk Map]

Supercell thunderstorms have emerged over parts of south west Saskatchewan and southern Alberta. Earlier, tornado watches and severe thunderstorm warnings caused a delay in the Women's World Cup soccer match between Canada and New Zealand in Edmonton. That storm has now moved east of the city and the game has resumed. Watches and warnings are now active and several areas of south west Saskatchewan and eastern Alberta. Check Environment Canada for current alerts.

Here is a snap shot of the Echo Tops reaching near 50k feet as of 7:30pm SST:

Updated Severe Weather Outlook Map as of 8pm:

Two Days Of Strong Storms [Current Map With Details]

The PSPC (Prairie and Arctic Storm Prediction Centre) is pulling no punches with its forecast this morning, mentioning "long lived severe thunderstorms", "golf ball size hail" and "90km/hr damaging wind gusts." Edmonton to Lloydminster will be the main areas to watch as storms become severe later this afternoon and into the evening. Storms are expected to reach the Saskatchewan border by sundown and weaken but not die off completely. Nocturnal thunderstorms could continue through the night and feed a larger outbreak across much of the northern grain belt and into south east Saskatchewan and western Manitoba on Friday. We will update this story with another forecast map later this afternoon or early evening depending on the timing and strength of this system.

Saturday, June 06, 2015

Video Of Lightning Storm - May 31st [with music and EPIC ending]

Sped up 4x until the EPIC ending with super slow motion 0.25x

Father and Son Storm Chasing Team
"The Storm Marshall's"
Video footage by William Mysko
Editing by Jared Mysko
Musical Credit: Flight Of The Bumblebee - Rimsky-Korsakov

View Of The Storm Friday Evening

Here is the view of the storm base from downtown Regina as it passed to our north.

Today's Outlook Map

There is a chance of severe thunderstorms today in south-eastern Saskatchewan and southern Manitoba. These storms are not expected to be too strong with the main features being heavy rain and small hail. General thunderstorm cells are possible in a wide area of the prairies but will not become severe.

Friday, June 05, 2015

Severe Thunderstorm Warnings Issued [Updated Risk Map]

Storms continue to move across southern Saskatchewan this evening, some strong enough to have watches and warnings issued. For the most part, these storms will only bring brief downpours, small hail and strong wind gusts. Check your weather radio or Environment Canada's current warnings page for details. As of 6:39pm, a severe thunderstorm warning was issued for the city of Moose Jaw and a Severe Thunderstorm Watch was issued for the city of Regina (which set off my new weather radio in the middle of watching the movie Jurassic Park, REALLY LOUD LOL) 

...and as I write this, the latest radar scans show the line of storms coming off Diefenbaker Lake have rapidly dissipated to near extinction.... back to the movie, looks like the storms are all gone...

Today Severe Thunderstorm Risk Map

June 5, 2015

Severe thunderstorms this afternoon including hail heavy rain, lightning and strong wind gusts. Watches have been issued including an advisory for funnel clouds and weak landspout tornadoes.

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Saskatchewan Rivals The Driest Places On Earth This Spring!

At first, I knew it was a dry spring and when I read the latest numbers tweeted by Tiffany at Global News Regina, I was not surprised. Only 9.6mm fell in the city of Regina over the month of May.
Then today, I read a tweet from Peter at Global News in Saskatoon. Only 0.4mm fell in the city of Saskatoon during the month of May. I had to ask if this was a mistake and he meant centimeters.

Nope! Here is the provided official climate data from Environment Canada:

Environment Canada Climate Data

After doing some checking of the driest places on Earth, I found the the Sahara Desert gets approximately 7mm of rain during the month of May. Among the listed driest places on Earth, Waidi Halfa, Sudan gets 2.4mm of rain annually while parts of Egypt, Libya, Chile and the Antarctic get even less to none!

The current long term forecast shows no major change to this dry trend in Saskatchewan. In fact, nothing of significance at all for at least 2 more weeks. People need to take this very seriously in Regina where the city is pleading with residents to cut back on water use. Sadly, with so many new and younger residents, they have no idea what a major drought can do here. Its been a long time since the last major drought but both the "Dirty 30s" and droughts in 1988 and 2000-03 (Encyclopedia of Saskatchewan:Drought) had devastating effects on the economy and living conditions, not only here but in a massive ripple down effect since Saskatchewan is still considered the "breadbasket of North America".

Monday, June 01, 2015

Tonight's Severe Weather Outlook Map

June 1st, 2015

Storms will continue moving east overnight along the Manitoba/North Dakota border. Hail, strong wind gusts and heavy rain are the main risks associated with these storms. Another larger system in Montana may touch the extreme southern border of Saskatchewan late tonight. On Tuesday, storms are expected to keep south of the international border with a possible risk of strong tornadoes in the Dakotas. Much needed rain for the city of Regina has once again missed us and water rationing by residents and businesses begins to ramp up as severe drought threatens the area.

Today's Severe Weather Outlook Map

June 1, 2015

Severe thunderstorms can be expected later today in south east Saskatchewan and along the Manitoba border into the evening. Hail, strong wind gust and heavy rain will be the main threats.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

New Forecast Map: Version 2015

Here is our first map of the season with storm season right on track as we enter the month of June. Storms may persist overnight throughout areas of southern and central Saskatchewan, bringing a risk of small hail, gusty winds and heavy downpours. The risk moves east and south for the day tomorrow as this system begins to pick up steam and build toward the Dakotas, Monday and Tuesday.

*This latest version of the Experimental Forecast Map was re-built using the original format from 2012 by CorelDraw and can now be updated using the new "Fire Alpaca" software.
 (its always fun to try out new programs!)

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Drought Continues! North Dakota Possibilities June 2nd?

The first real chance for severe thunderstorms on the northern plains looks to be June 2nd to 3rd however, current GFS (Global Forecast System) model suggests things will stay south of the US border. It shows that central North Dakota 'could' have severe weather including supercells that day with systems moving towards southern Manitoba on the 3rd. Earlier model runs showed storms possible in southern Saskatchewan on June 2nd as well, so things can easily shift. Personally, I have very little confidence our extremely dry pattern will change any time soon. A strong system in North Dakota could possibly feed some much needed moisture for future development later on around the 7th of June. Right now, looking at humidity and dew point levels, any convection is getting quickly sucked up by near drought conditions at the surface. 30% humidity does not equal thunderstorms of any kind in my books. Dry lightning and low precipitation, high based thunder clouds do not excite me. There is a better chance of severe drought and dust storms than anything else this year, maybe a grasshopper infestation?!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Storm Season / Heating Up / Safety Tip

As May approaches, tornado season in the states has been getting quite active with several major damaging storm events in April including this week's tornado fest in north central Texas and the massive wedge tornado just outside of Chicago a couple weeks ago. Video clips from that event are posted on our new Facebook page. Also, check out the "Weather Watch" international community of Google Plus. Another new innovation in the growth of storm casting which is already at an astounding 10'974 members! 

The "experimental forecast map" will be back in time for the first risk of severe summer weather which could be as soon as the middle of May. For now, it has been re-added to the side bar here. So keep checking back as this will continue to be the base of operations from whence all storm news comes from. There are a few new things being worked on to make this a more comprehensive and interactive site.  

Here is a little tip and a video from last night, thanks to +Reed Timmer for sharing: 

When people stop under a bridge during a tornado warning... good thing there was a storm chaser to shake some common sense into the fools blocking traffic. "You're gonna get us all killed!" They moved. Remember, never block traffic during a storm. Traffic jams can and have killed people simply because they stopped moving. Either go with the storm, away from the storm or stay in shelter. Never Stop Chasing! (and never be a sitting duck)

Video via Mike Scantlin +StormChaseTV 

Friday, March 13, 2015

Foggy Fog!

Its a nice foggy day here in Regina today, quite often the fog comes before the storm, or in this case the hot sunshine comes out in the afternoon and we have great warmth and calm winds. A very rare occurrence for the middle of flat prairie country. The forecast is for a bit of a heat wave but it will only continue the rapid drying and melting of remaining snow and ice in Regina, while just west of here, the snow is long gone and areas such as Calgary, Medicine Hat, Moose Jaw, Swift Current and the state of Montana will see upper teens and near 20 degrees Celsius temperatures! 

All of this is good news for those who are sick of winter but for storm chasers, SDS (Severe Weather Deprivation Syndrome) is setting in hard. So far 0 (zero) tornadoes reported in the month of March and we have seen the longest stretch of no watch advisories since 1986. The year has started out as the quietest storm season ever. It is all going to hit at once? That is the biggest worry as you get that feeling, "It is just wayyy too quiet" just before the big one hits. So, where are all the storms? Check out this map from of the "World Map of Tropical Storms": 

4 tropical storms around Australia, where the big heat is still hiding.

Monday, March 09, 2015

Slow Start To Storm Season (Snow Cover Map/Waterfowl Migration)

As deep freezing temperatures have vanished across much of the Canadian Prairies this week, spring begins its annual relief with thawing and melting well under way. By the looks of the snow cover maps, it is already very dry in the south west of Saskatchewan, including southern Alberta. There seems to be a dry line south of the Yellowhead Highway as cities such as Edmonton, Lloydminster, Saskatoon and Yorkton have the deepest moisture with the winter snow pack.

Map from Environment Canada
This means, the heat will be on early in the south west and without any significant rain or snow, it will be a very dry start to spring with more chance of dust storms this year. Hopefully, the drought does not spread to the rest of the farm belt. With very much normal snow packs along the Yellowhead, thunderstorms may have a difficult time getting too strong and tornadoes may be non-existent this summer in western Canada. All of this can change rapidly of course as spring showers often bring May flowers!

Here is a look at the current North American Snow Cover Map courtesy of NOAA:

These maps and more information can be found at Canadian Cryospheric Information Network

Also of note, the spring migration is just getting under way and you can see the progress of our natural seeders and fertilizers fly closer to your area via the Ducks Unlimited website.

Stay tuned to this blog for more updates on stormy weather this year!