Canada's top ten weather stories of 2013
- 2013 - A Year in Review
- 1. Alberta's Flood of Floods
- 2. Toronto's Torrent
- 3. Bumper Crops in the West, So-So for the Rest
- 4. The Nightmare during Christmas
- 5. To Flood or Not to Flood?
- 6. Rebound in the Arctic Ocean and the Great Lakes
- 7. Wicked Winter Weather Wallops the East
- 8. Spring Flooding in Ontario’s Cottage Country
- 9. Prairie Winter Went on Forever
- 10. Stormy Seas and Maritime Tragedy
- Runner-up Stories
- Atlantic Regional Highlights
- Quebec - Regional Highlights
- Ontario - Regional Highlights
- Prairie Provinces - Regional Highlights
- British Columbia - Regional Highlights
- The North - Regional Highlights
Prairie Provinces - Regional Highlights
- Powerful Prairie Blizzard
- Three-province Storm
- St. Patrick’s Day Storm
- May Day Storm
- A Tsunami of Ice
- Two May Storms
- Snowy November in Alberta
1. Powerful Prairie Blizzard
Icy roads, blowing snow and piling snow drifts prompted rural school cancellations and flight delays across Manitoba and Saskatchewan as a nasty blizzard swept across the south on January 11. In Manitoba, ditches along Winnipeg’s Perimeter Highway were littered with cars while Manitoba Hydro dealt with a rash of power outages. Winnipegers woke up to 10 to 15 cm of fresh snow and -25 wind chills in wind gusts of 70 km/h.
2. Three-province Storm
March began with lion-like weather roaring across the southern Prairies. A furious storm shut down many highways due to drifting snow, limited visibility and icy roads. In Calgary, winds peaked close to 100 km/h and the storm dumped 27 cm of snow before barrelling into Saskatchewan. Conditions there led to the closure of the Trans-Canada Highway in the central and southern parts of the province. The storm then moved into Manitoba, where in excess of 20 cm of snow blocked roads and forced the closing of several schools. In the western Red River Valley at Miami MB, 56 cm of snow fell in 24 hours between March 4 and 5. Drifts in town were piled up to second-storey bedroom windows.
3. St. Patrick’s Day Storm
A strong low-pressure system spread snow and blowing snow into the southern reaches of Saskatchewan and Manitoba on the afternoon of March 17. Coronach, Saskatchewan got 32 cm of snow. Behind the storm, very cold arctic air plunged temperatures to -28°C. Winnipeg got a 1-2 punch of heavy snow followed by -30 wind chills. The wicked weather prompted the closure of roads, schools and cemeteries.
4. May Day Storm
May Day has historically been celebrated to mark the end of the harsh winter. Tell that to residents in the western and Interlake regions of Manitoba who were hit with a winter storm on May 1 that forced them to retrieve their snow shovels or stay at home because of treacherous road conditions. The community of Plumas, 200 km northwest of Winnipeg, got the biggest dump with up to 45 cm of snow.
5. A Tsunami of Ice
Several homes and cottages on Dauphin Lake were heavily damaged by fast-moving ice, which was pushed onshore by strong, gusty winds striking at 90 km/h in the second week of May. The ice tipped over some dwellings, while others had rooms full of ice that entered through doors and windows. Crushing ice also brought down several utility poles.
6. Two May Storms
A slow-moving, energetic low-pressure system over northeastern South Dakota brought significant rains to parts of southern Manitoba during the Victoria Day long weekend. The greatest three-day accumulations occurred south of the Trans-Canada Highway, including: Deerwood 97 mm, Morden 89 mm, Sprague 73 mm, Letellier 71 mm, Killarney 69 mm, Carman 68 mm and Altona 67 mm. The heavy rains caused extensive overland flooding on farmland, significantly delaying field work and seeding.
7. Snowy November in Alberta
A winter storm at the beginning of November set the scene for a snowy month across southern and central Alberta. On November 2, much of the province from Edmonton southward was blanketed by snow after an intense low-pressure system moved in from the Pacific Coast. Central Alberta was hit the hardest, with some places reporting 20 to 30 cm. On November 4, when the storm hit Saskatchewan, a combination of warm roads, rain, freezing rain, wet snow and the pressure from vehicles polished roads to an icy finish. Two weeks later another system dumped around 20 cm of snow on Edmonton and environs, and over 25 cm in Drayton Valley and Ponoka. In Red Deer, snow-clogged streets forced officials to cancel the Santa Claus Parade. More snow later in the month brought the city’s total to 62.5 cm – a new record for November with observations spanning over 75 years.
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