Snow Ushers In Brutal Cold Snap

Snow will the the story today as another system moves across Manitoba bringing close to 10cm to Winnipeg and lesser amounts southwards towards the International Border. The warm temperatures that we’ll see today will quickly be replaced by one of the most unpleasant cold snaps of the year; while temperatures won’t be the coldest we’ve seen, they’ll be coupled with a strong wind that will produce some of the coldest feeling weather of the winter.


-11°C / -23°C
5-10cm of snow. Windy with blowing snow in the morning and evening.

-22°C / -33°C
Sunny, windy and very cold.

-27°C / -30°C
Mainly sunny. Extremely cold.

Friday: Snow & Blowing Snow

Snowfall accumulations aross Southern Manitoba; totals for the period of Thursday night through Friday evening.
Snowfall accumulations aross Southern Manitoba; totals for the period of Thursday night through Friday evening.

Snow will be the story today as a pair of low pressure systems move in tandem through Manitoba; one in the Northern half of the province and the other travelling near the United States border. They will work together to produce an extremely wide swath of snow that covers nearly the entire province. The heaviest snow will track through the “usual” suspects: Parkland Manitoba (particularly near Dauphin) SE through the Southern Interlake and then off towards Pinawa and into NW Ontario.

Along the axis of heaviest snow, around 10–15cm will fall, with the higher amounts closer to the Ontario border thanks to the merging of the two low pressure systems. Winnipeg will sit right on the southern edge of the axis of heaviest snow, so we’ll likely see total amounts by this evening very close to 10cm. Amounts will taper off relatively quickly as one goes south; areas near the U.S. border will see only around 2–5cm of snow.

In tandem with the snow will be mild temperatures and strong winds. Here in Winnipeg the temperature will climb to a comparatively balmy –11 or –10°C while temperatures in the Southern Red River Valley may see as high as –5 or –4°C. These warm temperatures will be ushered in by the strong winds we’re seeing this morning out of the south at around 40km/h with gusts to 60km/h. This wind will produce blowing snow in open areas of the Red River Valley this morning which will produce near-zero visibilities. As is usual, highways running west-east will be hardest hit. The wind will taper off midday and we’ll see a fairly pleasant afternoon with some light snow, mild temperatures and light winds.

Things will deteriorate quickly in the evening as the cold front slumps southwards. Extremely cold air will begin pushing into the Red River Valley as winds pick up out of the northwest to 30–40km/h with gusts as high as 60km/h. This, combined with the freshly fallen snow, will produce widespread blowing snow through much of the Red River Valley through the evening and overnight hours. Visibilites will be near-zero in some areas and, in general, highway travel will be difficult. If you need to travel tomorrow night, carry a winter survival kit and give yourself lots of time to reach your destination.

Brutal Cold Returns for the Weekend

The GDPS 850mb temperatures show an extremely cold Arctic air mass moving over Southern Manitoba this weekend.
The GDPS 850mb temperatures show an extremely cold Arctic air mass moving over Southern Manitoba this weekend.

After the snow and wind moves out tonight, we’ll be left with absolutely brutal cold moving into the region. Although the temperatures won’t be quite as cold as the last shot we got, they’ll be paired with winds in the range of 15–30km/h which will make it feel significantly colder. The temperature will slowly fall all day Saturday from whatever it is in the morning (close to –22°C or so) until we hit our overnight low on Saturday night of around –33°C. Combined with the wind, it will feel closer to around –45 by early sunday morning.

Sunday will see temperatures recover to around –26°C thanks to a little bit of cloud pushing back into the region from the north. Winds will be 15–20km/h mainly out of the west. We’ll drop to around -32°C on Sunday night under mainly clear skies.

The brutal winter of 2013/14 continues.

Cold Weather is Going Nowhere Fast!

More cold weather is in store for this week – I bet that’s just what you were hoping to hear!

Wind Chill Values on Monday Morning



Increasing Cloudiness Late
-21°C / -26°C

Today will be another frigid day in Southern Manitoba. Morning temperatures will be close to the -30C mark, with the wind chill making it feel closer to -40 in many areas. Afternoon temperatures won’t moderate much, with highs only reaching into the low minus twenties. There will remain a bit of a breeze through the afternoon hours, generating a wind chill that will make it feel worse than the temperature alone would indicate.



Mainly Sunny
-20°C / -30°C

Tuesday morning will be a bit warmer than Monday morning, as some cloud cover helps to keep the temperature from bottoming out. However, it won’t be a warm day in general, as the temperature hovers near -20C and the wind chill makes it feel more like the minus thirties.



Mainly Sunny
-22°C / -25°C

Guess what, Wednesday will be cold too! Wednesday morning could be one of the coldest of the week, as temperatures drop to around or below -30C. Wind chill values on Wednesday morning will be -40 or colder, making it feel even worse. You may want to ensure your block heat is working and you’ve got an extension cord in your car, this week is not going to get much better from here…

Long Range

There is no immediate end to this cold snap in sight. Models hint that we may see a bit of a warm-up around December 15, but that is far from a certainty. At least that model forecast offers a bit of hope that we may see a break from this cold weather at some point.

Back To The Deep Freeze

After a short break from the cold as milder air spilled across the Prairies, significantly colder weather is on it’s way back to the region as a significant Arctic ridge pushes into the Prairies.

850mb Temperatures for Mid-Day Wednesday, January 30th 2013

850mb temperatures show a deep core of cold, Arctic air pushing into Manitoba while near summer-like warmth is in place over the eastern United States.



Mostly cloudy with patchy light snow.
-16°C / -25°C

The Arctic air will slowly push eastwards across Southern Manitoba today which will offset most of our potential warming today and limit our daytime high to only a couple degrees warmer than we dipped down to overnight. We’ll likely see the temperature climb to about –16°C today, but northerly winds of 20–30km/h will make it feel closer to –25 or –26 this afternoon. In addition to the cooler temperatures, some low-level lift associated with the advancing cold air, combined with the mostly cloudy skies in place over the Red River Valley, will result in patchy light snow for most of the day. As things cool off this evening the thermal profile will become less conducive to snow generation which will help any light snow left taper off. Temperatures will drop to around –25°C as skies clear overnight with wind chill values closer to –35.

Thursday & Friday

Sunny skies will dominate through to the weekend as we remain under the influence of the Arctic ridge. Temperatures will return back to the “bitterly cold” range with daytime highs back below the –20°C mark.


-22°C / -33°C

Sunny. Increasing clouds overnight.
-24°C / -30°C

Temperatures will top out at –22°C on Thursday and then plummet to –33°C on Thursday night. Wind chill may be a concern on Thursday night; if winds climb up to even 15km/h wind chill values will drop to –42 to –45 which is below the –40 threshold for wind chill warnings in Southern Manitoba. Temperatures will rebound to only around –24°C on Friday under sunny skies again. Some cloud will push into the Red River Valley on Friday night as an Alberta clipper pushes into southwestern Manitoba; this will help prevent our overnight low from dropping as much as the night before. Currently it looks that the temperature will bottom out at –30°C but it will likely be short-lived as that cloudy, warmer air pushes eastwards.

An Arctic Blast

This week will feature the coldest weather so far this winter, which is probably about all you need to know.

850mb temperatures on Monday morning

As we come off Monday morning’s very cold low temperatures, daytime highs won’t be able to get very warm, with values in the mid minus twenties expected. When you factor in the wind chill it will feel more like the low minus forties on Monday morning and the mid minus thirties on Monday afternoon. As we move into Monday night temperatures are expected to plummet once again. Models have had significant difficulties figuring out what will happen by Tuesday morning. Models have shown lows as cold as -47C on Tuesday morning (obviously an erroneous value), or as warm as -28C. It seems probable that we’ll end up somewhere between those two extremes, with lows in the mid minus thirties most likely. It shouldn’t be very windy at all on Tuesday morning, so at least we won’t have a big wind chill to contend with as well. It looks like we’ll “warm” up a bit on Tuesday, with daytime highs in the low minus twenties expected.

We shouldn’t see extreme overnight lows again on Wednesday morning since a weak passing weather system will prevent temperatures from bottoming out. However, another arctic front is forecast to pass through Southern Manitoba during the day on Wednesday, setting up more very cold weather for late week.

Unfortunately, there are no indications to suggest that we’ll see a warm-up any time soon. That means we may be stuck with cold to very cold weather for the rest of January.