Warmer-than-Seasonal Temperatures Continue

Although the second half of the week will see cooler temperatures than have been in place over the past 5 days, daytime highs will nonetheless still remain above the seasonal values near -2°C. Perhaps one of the biggest differences over the next few days will be that it will be significantly cloudier than seen over the past several days which will likely slow down the melting a little bit. Highs near or above 0°C will continue to keep the City of Winnipeg a slushy, sloppy mess, so don’t put away that spare bottle of windshield washer fluid yet!

A low pressure system developing in Alberta & forecast to track eastwards across the Prairies will bring continued warm weather alongside plenty of cloud.
A low pressure system developing in Alberta & forecast to track eastwards across the Prairies will bring continued warm weather alongside plenty of cloud.

Today will be a mostly cloudy day in Winnipeg with a chance for some non-accumulating light flurries as a weak warm front(fn) slides northeastwards through the region. After the passage of the front, there may be a rogue sunny break, but overall skies should remain mostly cloudy as temperatures climb to near +1°C with an easterly breeze. Cloud cover will thicken up tonight as the main support for the advancing low from Alberta begins pushing towards our region. Skies will be overcast tonight with temperatures remaining steady near 0°C.

Wednesday
+1°C / ⇒ 0°C
Mainly cloudy with a chance of morning flurries

Thursday
5°C / -1°C
Cloudy; chance of evening showers or flurries

Friday
3°C / -2°C
Mainly cloudy

Thursday will be an overcast day through the Red River Valley with light winds as a low pressure system tracks right across the region. Temperatures will be warmer – highs should be near 5°C – and no precipitation is expected through much of the day. Heading into the evening, a chance for some showers or flurries will spread into the Red River Valley alongside northwesterly winds to 20-30km/h behind the passage of a trough. The chance for some flurries will persist through the overnight period as temperatures drop to around -2°C.

Friday will be another mainly cloudy day. A few light flurries may linger into the morning hours, but in general most of the day will see no precipitation. Highs will climb to near +3°C with a chance for some sunny breaks in the afternoon. Skies will clear through the evening as we head to a low near -2 or -3°C.

Near-Seasonal In The Long-Range

This weekend looks to bring another surge of warmth to Southern Manitoba on Sunday that will push daytime highs into the upper single-digits, but looking further than that, near-seasonal temperatures are expected. This translates to daytime highs around the 0°C mark or so. The odd day here or there of slightly warmer-than-normal is possible, but all in all it appears that Winnipeg will be transitioning into a fairly dry, seasonal March pattern next week.

Fortunately, with daytime highs above 0°C many days and little snow expected, the erosion of the snowpack in the Red River Valley will continue over the coming week. With little snow expected, many regions in the valley could see snow-free conditions by the end of the weekend. This is particularly significant as areas of snow-free ground will warm up significantly more than snow-covered ground. As we head into the coming weeks and warmer and warmer air begins moving in, it won’t be uncommon to see 10°C temperature differences over short distances based solely on snow-cover.

After the bone-chilling February experienced in Winnipeg, there are no complaints to be had with how March has unfolded so far and looks to continue!

Mild Weather Returns, But Not The Sunny Spell Once Expected

Mild temperatures, above seasonal for this time of year, will be in place over Southern Manitoba, but the potential warmth will be limited over much of the Red River Valley and areas east thanks to an extensive area of low cloud that has moved into Manitoba and North Dakota within the outflow from a ridge of high pressure situated over Michigan.

Wednesday
-2°C / -3°C
Mainly cloudy & windy.
Thursday
0°C / -2°C
Mostly cloudy and mild
Friday
+1°C / 0°C
Mixed skies and mild

Today will be 7-8°C above seasonal for this time of year[1] with temperatures climbing to the -2 to -1°C mark by late this afternoon under cloudy skies. It will be moderately windy too with sustained wind speeds in the 30-40km/h range with gusts up to around 50km/h, making it feel like a much cooler day than it actually will be.

As the jet stream lifts northwards, warmer air lifts northwards as well.
As the jet stream lifts northwards, warmer air lifts northwards as well.

The warming temperatures are thanks to a large upper-level ridge moving into the region which will develop an increasingly southwesterly flow across the Prairies and shift the jet stream further north. These two things together are helping push mild Pacific air into the southern Prairies. Unfortunately for Winnipeg, a ridge of high pressure anchored over Michigan will result in a persistent flow of colder air near the surface which, coupled with the cloud cover, will result in temperatures much lower than will be seen further west where a combination of more sun, terrain and some slightly more favourable wind directions will push temperatures towards record high territory.

Temperatures will barely drop tonight, perhaps just a degree or two, with winds tapering off to around 20km/h. The cloud cover will possible break up a little bit, but will likely remain cloudier than not.

Thursday will likely be another mostly cloudy day as the stratus continues to limit our daytime highs. We should see the temperature climb up to around 0°C with the southerly winds near 20km/h diminishing to light through the day. Thursday night will bring some scattering of the clouds, although mixed skies persisting until morning is the most likely situation at this point. Indications right now show that there may be a slight risk for freezing drizzle on Thursday night. Expect a low near -2°C.

Friday will be the nicest day of the three with a little sunshine looking a bit more likely than today or tomorrow. Temperatures will likely climb up to around 0 or +1°C, however if we end up with substantial amounts of sunshine, +2 or +3°C may even be possible.

Much Warmer over Western Manitoba

For areas in Western Manitoba, especially those on the northern side of the Turtle Mountains or those in the Dauphin area near the Riding Mountains, temperatures will be quite a bit warmer over the coming days. A combination of several factors, including:

  • Further proximity from the ridge over Michigan will minimize the amount of cold air being reinforced near the surface in a return flow.
  • Winds have a more southerly to slightly southwesterly component which will help tap the warmer air.
  • Terrain is not a valley that likes to keep cold air caught in it.
  • Downslope mixing on the northern side of larger terrain features will help couple the surface and warm air aloft.

This all means that for several days, beginning today, daytime highs will generally climb into the +2 to 5°C range for areas in the more generally open area to warmer values of +5 to +8 in regions downwind (north of) major terrain features such as the Riding Mountains or Turtle Mountains.

Warmth Spreads into the Red River Valley on the Weekend

The even warmer weather will spread into the Red River Valley for the weekend, however, as winds shift into a more southwesterly flow, helping push out the cold air and get some of that more substantial warmth into the region. Saturday looks to bring highs in the low-to-mid single digits with cooler air filtering in on Sunday, dropping highs back to the cooler side of 0°C alongside a chance for some light snow.


  1. The seasonal daytime high for Winnipeg this time of year is around -9°C.  ↩

First Taste of Winter

This week will feature our first taste of winter as a cold arctic air mass descends on southern Manitoba.

Cold weather will descend on southern Manitoba this week
Cold weather will descend on southern Manitoba this week

Monday

Monday
-5°C / -8°C
Mainly cloudy with chance of flurries

Today will be one of the coldest days we’ve seen so far this fall. High temperatures will stay on the minus side of zero with the possibility of light flurries throughout the day. There will be a breezy north wind as well, but overall it shouldn’t be too unpleasant.

Tuesday

Tuesday
-4°C / -5°C
Mainly cloudy with chance of flurries

Tuesday will feature weather that is very similar to that experienced on Monday. High temperatures will once again remain in the minus single digits with a chance of flurries. The wind will once again be from the north, at 20-30km/h.

Wednesday

Wednesday
-3°C / -6°C
Flurries

Sub-freezing weather will continue on Wednesday, with high temperatures in the minus single digits yet again. Flurries will be likely throughout the day, and some light accumulation may even occur. The wind will be gusty and from the north or north-west.

Long Range

The long range forecast suggests we will see wintry conditions continue for the foreseeable future. Thankfully, no major snowfall events are currently in the forecast. Snow cover dramatically affects our temperature regime, so the longer we can avoid the white stuff the longer we will avoid really cold conditions!

Warmer than Normal, but Still Cool

Conditions will remain at or above normal this week, unfortunately “normal” continues to get colder by the day.

A cool westerly flow will dominate southern Manitoba on Monday

A cool westerly flow will dominate southern Manitoba on Monday

Monday

Monday
8°C / 2°C
Mix of sun and cloud

Today will be mild by early November standards, but that doesn’t mean it will be warm. Temperatures will be in the mid to upper single digits in southern Manitoba with a brisk westerly wind. Skies will be a mixture of sun and cloud as an upper-level weather system moves across Manitoba.

Tuesday

Tuesday
4°C / 0°C
Mainly cloudy with chance of showers or flurries

Tuesday will be cooler than Monday as we see a brisk north-westerly flow behind a departing low pressure system. Temperatures will generally be in the mid single digits under mainly cloudy skies. There may be a few flurries or rain showers, but no significant accumulations are expected.

Wednesday

Wednesday
3°C / 1°C
Mainly cloudy with chance of showers/flurries

Wednesday will see continued cool weather in southern Manitoba with temperatures in the low to mid single digits, but lighter winds than what we saw earlier in the week. Skies will remain mainly cloudy and we may once again see some light flurries or rain showers.

Long Range

The long range forecast suggests we’ll continue to see normal to above-normal weather for at least the next week or so. Beyond that model solutions diverge, with equal chances of us ending up above or below normal.