Extreme cold returns to Prairies on Monday


Surface temperature (in F) from Friday to Monday night

Arctic air is set to return to the Prairie Provinces following a brief warm-up in temperatures. A Clipper will swing through parts of central Saskatchewan and Manitoba tonight and tomorrow, bringing with it system snow. A cold Arctic airmass will slowly be dragged on its backside. However, it is the expected Colorado Low, which is forecasted to bring winter storm conditions to the Northern Plains on Monday that will allow the Arctic air to move southwards.

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Arctic air intrusion, surface temperature depictions (in F) and Colorado Low on Sunday night

Cold temperatures will slowly return in the mid minus twenties, but the big story will be the wind. Extreme wind chills will return to the Prairies as the surface Low pressure depicted above moves northeast in the US Midwest.


Surface wind chills (in C) depicted for Sunday night into Monday morning

This will only be the beginning of another long period of deep freeze for many areas of Canada and the United States as a High pressure (see below) locks in place over the Prairies and allow for another cold air outbreak.

GFS MSLP depiction of surface High's and Low's on Tuesday night

Below is the North American continent and the surface temperatures (in F) several weeks into February. As you can see, another cold Arctic airmass will be locked in place, better known as the Polar Vortex.

Continental view of upcoming "Polar Vortex"

Below is a screenshot of the forecasted surface temperatures for the Prairie Provinces by the NAM 12km model. As you can see, the temperatures themselves won't be too extreme, but strong northerly winds will bring dangerous wind chills nearing -40 (as shown in the beginning of this article).

Forecasted surface temperatures (in C) for the Prairie Provinces Sunday night

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