Warnings are still in place, but it looks like southern Manitoba has seen the worst of its spring snowstorm.
Snow and blowing snow are expected to continue throughout the southern half of the province on Thursday, but the low pressure system responsible for the drastic return of winter is starting to weaken, says Environment Canada.
Snowfall totals of five to 10 centimeters — rather than the 10 to 15 centimeters originally forecast — are likely across the Red River Valley, including Winnipeg and southeastern Manitoba on Thursday.
“[We] we may be seeing the slow decay of this storm,” said Dan Fulton, senior meteorologist at Environment and Climate Change Canada.
The Winnipeg area received a total of 25 cm on Wednesday as the storm landed. Fulton believes a few areas in western Manitoba had more than that, but official amounts are still pending.
The west should have a much easier day, with only two to five centimeters for Thursday, according to Environment Canada forecasts. Dauphin and the Interlake area should get another 5-10cm.
Some unofficial snowfall amounts from Wednesday were released on Thursday:
- Brandon: 12 cm.
- Virden: 15 cm.
- Gimli: 20-25cm.
- Morden: 30+ cm.
- Saint Clement: 31 cm.
- Riding Mountain area: 30-40 cm.
Fulton predicts that by the end of the storm, snowfall totals will be 30 to 35 cm in southern Manitoba.
Forecasts suggested a range of 30 to 50 centimeters, but closer to 80 cm along the higher elevations of Riding Mountain and Turtle Mountain.
“The storm did about what we thought it would – maybe not as much snow. I always thought the 80cm was a bit of a stretch, but I guess we’ll see when the amounts come in” said CBC Manitoba meteorologist John Sauder.
“It wasn’t the 1997 storm, it wasn’t the 48cm we had 25 years ago, but still, it’s a significant snowfall. And we haven’t come out of it yet. , we still have to be careful.”
Residents of big cities, sheltered by taller buildings, may not have realized how much worse conditions were beyond city borders, he said.
Deb Bauche, who lives just north of the International Peace Garden on the Canada-US border southwest of Winnipeg, near Turtle Mountain Provincial Park, is a witness to this.
“We have a five-foot snowdrift on the southern part of our deck that’s almost in contact with the one sticking out of the roof,” she said.
“This morning when I went up there it wasn’t snowing at all but it was very windy. And we just looked again and now it’s snowing really hard and the visibility is down. Like John l I said, it comes in bands. That’s how it was yesterday all day and part of the night.
“It’s the strangest storm.”
The few blizzard warnings that were in place in western Manitoba for much of the week have been dropped by Environment Canada and replaced with winter storm warnings that cover just about everywhere else in the south.
Wind gusts continue to be strong at times — up to nearly 60 km/h in the Brandon area and around 50 in and around Winnipeg — fanning the fresh snowfall, Sauder said.
As a result, travel on highways could be difficult, if not impossible, particularly on Thursday morning, says Environment Canada.
More than two dozen freeways or sections of freeways are closed due to poor driving conditions. Information on ever-changing road conditions is available on the province’s website.
“We’re still going to see the strong winds stay with us. They’re starting to move a little more northwest this afternoon, so I’m expecting them to be 30kph with gusts at 50 km/h,” Sauder said.
The wind will drop gradually as the snow eases through Friday, he said.
“I think Friday is a day where we’re going to see better visibilities and we’re going to start to see some of these freeways open up.”
Air flight times
Tyler MacAfee, vice president of the Winnipeg Airports Authority, said most flights are still canceled Thursday morning.
“It’s largely because the planes from yesterday didn’t arrive. The airlines preemptively canceled just about everything yesterday, so we’re seeing cancellations until about noon this morning,” he said. -he declares.
Beyond that, however, is still a guess at this point.
“It’s really hard to tell. As everyone knows, Mother Nature sort of has her own plan,” MacAfee said. “If you plan to travel today, be sure to watch your flights closely.”
Arrival and departure information is available on the WAA’s website, but “the best thing people can do is talk to their airline,” MacAfee said.
“Each airline will treat passengers differently depending on their flight schedule and availability,” he said.
If your flight still needs to leave, give yourself plenty of time to get to the airport, MacAfee said.