Crazy weather

After a cold and snowy early winter, we had a sudden warming that brought about 3 inches of rain at the same time that the existing snow started melting rapidly.

For the second time this year, we are seeing rivers overflow their banks, and water flowing across roads making driving hazardous.

If these kind of swings in weather continue (and they probably will; 20th century weather was unusually stable and mild compared with previous centuries), it will be more important both to keep supplies at home to ride out short-term storms and road closures, and to grow plants in our gardens that are hardy and tolerant of a wide range of conditions.

Comments

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,640 admin

    We are having strange weather patterns here, too. Its been unusually mild except for a week of -11/-12C overnight lows. We had some snow and now its raining. Its not flooding but the ICE! The roads are horrible! If these warm temps keep up we will have no snow for Christmas. I don't think that has ever happened before. One year we came close but it snowed on Christmas Eve.

    If we get a sudden freeze now with no snow cover on the ground we could lose a lot of perennials.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,519 admin

    Yes, we also need the snow for so many reasons, like the ones @Torey mentioned, as well as moisture for our ground that is super dry. So many places that usually hold water or ice are parched. Our main river is very low. It also feels colder without snow or much snow.

    We do have a little snow, but it looks like it will melt within a few days & at the moment, there is no snow forecast for the coming days.

    I understand that in our area in the 80s, there was a brown Christmas in our immediate area. To the SW and north of here about 1+ hours, there was lots of snow! I remember that.

    At least we have a snowman out front. It's melting, but from the north side, it still resembles a snowman.

    A neighbor has said that some cattle producers are having pneumonia issues (or some other mystery respiratory illness) with their calves. He has been losing quite a few.

    Our two are still doing fine.

  • VermontCathy
    VermontCathy Posts: 1,980 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @LaurieLovesLearning I wish we could send you some of our water, Laurie. The rivers overflowed their banks after the recent rains. We need less water here, not more!

    Nearly every trace of snow is gone after the rains and a few days around 50F (10C), and none is expected between now and Christmas. Another green Christmas. :-(

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,519 admin

    My husband thinks our little bit of snow will stay & not melt. I hope he is correct. We have 5 days left to see if that will be the case. We did get a dusting last night.

    @VermontCathy We'd gladly take the water, but in increments. Too much too fast just tends to run off and away, especially now when the ground is as it is.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,640 admin

    The Friday before Christmas we woke up to +4C and a downpour of rain. By mid afternoon it cleared and the next morning it was -10C. Stayed chilly for two days and then warmed right up again.

    We have had record setting temperatures this past week. Yesterday, a community just to the north of us broke a record from 1895. So warm.

    I'm really surprised the thin skin of ice on our lake hasn't broken up. There was open water at both ends.

    But now we are in a cooling trend. Around the freezing point for a few days and then down to -13C by next weekend.

    Very concerned about plants. My daughter had daffodils starting to poke through and a neighbour said there was signs of life in her garlic. Way to early for either of those.

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 2,116 ✭✭✭✭✭

    We have not had as much of the negative temperatures yet as we have had in some winters but Anchorage (about an hour away) has had record snow fall. Ours got a letter start but there has been a good amount.

    Wouldn't mind an early breakup this year though. Didn't get much done last spring and summer with my husband stroke and my surgery. Lots of projects we hope to get to this year.

  • water2world
    water2world Posts: 1,156 ✭✭✭✭

    @VermontCathy We were supposed to get some snow last night---didn't happen and that's just fine with me!

  • jowitt.europe
    jowitt.europe Posts: 1,454 admin

    We are enjoying gentle snow, but…. The forecast threatens with arctic cold. Norway and Sweden record lowest temperatures ever. Below 40C. The temperatures are creeping down to the east and Central Europe. We’ll see what we get. So far nice, white winter.

  • VermontCathy
    VermontCathy Posts: 1,980 ✭✭✭✭✭

    After close to 2 weeks of warmer temps, snow melt, mud, and other "spring" weather, a storm is now blowing in across the northern tier of the US. We already have about 3 inches of snow, with more coming in the current storm and another storm coming in around Wednesday.

    Winter has returned with a vengeance.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,640 admin

    After all our mild temps and no snow, we are about to go into a deep freeze. Not as cold as Europe but we might hit -30C. Looks like at least a week of it.

    The worst part is there is next to no snow on the ground. We have just over an inch. Not nearly enough to protect anything. :(

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,519 admin
    edited January 8

    @Torey 😞 That's so very hard on all living things. I hope you get a sudden snowfall. A blanket of snow is important.

    @jowitt.europe That's interesting. I thought it would be much colder in those countries in the winter.

    We are getting snowfall. Any moisture is welcome. We need much, much more. It has been consistently cold here for a bit now, but thankfully, not strong winds nor deep cold just yet.

    Wednesday should bring more snow. Thursday through Saturday and possibly further on, we will be getting the -30°C weather.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,640 admin

    There is a snowfall warning out! 10 cm (4") is predicted but I doubt we'll get that much. Won't come till much later tonight.

    Its not much but it will help a bit when it gets to -32C on Thursday night/Friday morning.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,519 admin
    edited January 14

    We had a snowfall warning in the past few days.

    Below is a link to a website that I got in my email today. If you click the link, it explains the weather we've got at the moment.

    A note about the map of cold warnings... that space that is white on the map to the north in the Northwest Territories & Nunavut, (and I suspect west in BC), and in northern Manitoba to the east, are not inhabited. Canada may be large, but many places are not suitable to settle in at any time, for various reasons, that change from season to season.

    Edit to add: After saying that, I saw that Vancouver Island is not in red and neither is Whitehorse, NWT., but the majority of the area in white is not inhabited.

    I joked that all that those people in the cold-warned circles have to do is step out of that perimeter and enjoy nice, balmy weather. 😆 If only.

    I've never heard of rolling power outages in Alberta before in winter. I suspect that part of it might be the high influx they've had of new people moving there lately and probably a shot of politics to top it off.

    I was doing some reading. Apparently, these temperatures were too cold for the current wind turbines, which were shut down so that they wouldn't shatter & the solar panels had issues as well. Again, apparently, the EVs didn't work either. Coal power is the only thing keeping the people in this area, threatened by this cold and rotating power outages, warm & functioning. Many have said that this won't work in our part of the world, and that is showing itself to be true.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,640 admin

    That map does leave out a lot of BC that is also experiencing extreme cold including Vancouver Island. Even though the temps are higher than the rest of BC, its very cold in the south coast region as well as Vancouver Island. They showed pics on TV news of the frozen fountain at the legislature building in Victoria (our capital). That is actually south of the 49th parallel. The Lower Mainland has had temps reaching -28C with the windchill. Something that they just aren't used to. New records have been set everyday.

    I suspect that Whitehorse isn't included in the red because these are normal winter temps for that area.

  • SuperC
    SuperC Posts: 951 ✭✭✭✭

    this morning the temp was -4F with a mild breeze. Minnesota.

    two days ago, it snowed about an inch. It had been shorts-weather warm in December with two days of snow. It rained a lot. We had a “brown” but green Christmas, actually due to the rain.

    the weather man says it’s supposed to be in the minus numbers all week.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,640 admin

    I've seen it rain at temps below freezing before but never at -8C (18F). It didn't get above -8 all day yesterday but we had steady rain 3 times. The last one was a downpour. Cars are encased in ice. There must have been a temperature inversion with the freezing level at much lower elevations and warmer temps above.

    We went out yesterday to get milk and by the time we hit the highway, it had started to rain for the first time. We didn't get far cause even with movement at highway speed, the ice started to form on the windshield and the heat from the defroster wasn't keeping it at bay. We managed to get out between showers so we could see to drive but the roads were very icy even though they were well sanded.

    By the time my son-in-law was headed out for night shift, it took both of them 10 minutes to get the doors open and enough of the windows scraped to be able to see to drive. I haven't heard yet what his drive to work was like.

    This morning we have about an inch of fresh snow. Temps are supposed to hover around the freezing point till the weekend when we will be above freezing again.

    This is very strange weather for us in January.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,519 admin
    edited January 22

    Wow, that's horrible @Torey!

    We are still having very cold nights with windchills being down to -25 or colder (yesterday in the day was horribly cold). Today was slightly warmer than it's been, most likely mostly becausethere was no wind.

    By Tuesday & Wednesday, we should see -5 & -3. By Saturday, it should be -1.

    These days, we've been joking about the Rick Mercer Seven Day Forcast skit, and here it comes. 😆


  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 2,116 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Weather has indeed been crazy all over. My brother and his family are in Anchorage, they are having record snowfalls and were already well above the normal amount for the winter back in November or early December.

    We are in negative temperatures for at least the next 10 days.

    On the trip to the doctor on Thursday it was 17F at my house when we left. On the way in we hit areas down to -12, by the time we got into town it was 29F. When we left town it was 32F and dropped on the way home to -14. Then back up to 11F. We left home at 7:00 am and were back by 11:00 am. So 46 degree changes within 4 hours in a 60 mile area.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,519 admin

    And so at the end of our forecast we now have +1! Hahahaha

  • Michelle D
    Michelle D Posts: 1,465 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Our current weather is very abnormal for this time of year. Out of nowhere temperatures have risen above freezing and it is raining. The ground is still so cold that it is mostly freezing as it hits the ground. They have closed down a lot of things to discourage people from being on the roads.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,640 admin

    You laugh, @LaurieLovesLearning! We will be at +5 by Monday with no freezing overnight! Hahaha! The 14 day trend is indicating it will last for awhile.

    We had more rain last night, although it wasn't quite as cold, only -2C. Enough to freeze on vehicles and make the doors a bit sticky and lots of window scraping (chipping) to be done.

    I used to enjoy the cold, even going out snowshoeing when -30 or colder. But as I age, I am not such a fan anymore. So despite what damage might occur to gardens and trees in our area, I am enjoying not having to endure the cold as much this year.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,519 admin

    @Torey Oh wow. I can laugh at +1, but what you will get doesn't sound good. Plus five and extended warmth sounds troublesome for plants & roads, as you've said before. I hope humidity doesn't give too much of a chill and you don't have a sharp drop down without a snowy blanket. Up and down temps & sharp drops in temperature can be hard on everything & everyone.

    Most Canadians don't mind warm weather in winter. 😆 I just read about a survey done about that. I dont know why their results were surprising. 🤷‍♀️ I am glad that you are enjoying the reprieve. It's here anyway, you might as well!

    I'm not a fan of cold either, but sometimes the crisp, dry bite of deep cold (without chilly wind) and the sharp crunch sound of the snow does have an appeal strangely enough. I don't know why. Maybe it's a Prairie thing, appreciating a "dry cold."

    I do however, love the snow.

  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,917 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Instead of getting rain throughout the winter, we are now starting to get Atmospheric rivers which dump a lot of rain at one time. So far this winter, the lake has not formed in my backyard but there was still a lot of water, the 2nd storm that went through the beginning of the week dropped another ¾ of an inch for a total of 2.5 inches. Some of my containers were not able to drain very quickly. Also there was enough wind to blow the small greenhouse over again!

    Plus, our storms now come with strong winds and my small greenhouse gets hit every time!


  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,519 admin

    An update... we will be getting the same temps now as @Torey. 🤷‍♀️ Usually, we get those temps mid-February just before a French outdoor winter festival in our provincial capital, so a touch early. Carvers come from around the world to compete by carving huge packed snow blocks into fantastic sculptures. Sometimes it is too warm right then & it is difficult to do or the carvings start melting just before the festival begins. Then we get a big blizzard over spring break in March.

    It is generally pretty consistent. On occasion there are anomalies.

  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,917 ✭✭✭✭✭

    The News is predicting another atmospheric river to come through the end of next week.