As some parts of Saskatchewan felt an early winter, others saw very little or no snow at all with a gradient of snow in the province.
John Paul Cragg with Environment Canada said the system which came from Montana early this week dumped approximately four cm of snow in Meadow Lake, 10 to 15 cm in the Battlefords and 30 cm in Saskatoon.
“With the system, as you got further out from the main centre of the low, there was less and less snowfall. Then right at the very back end of the system there was something called the deformation zone which cut off all of the moisture from the system and stopped the snowfall all together,” Cragg said.
Some areas in between the Battlefords and Lloydminster were under a deformation zone and received little to no snow. A deformation zone is a region of stretching in the atmosphere caused by airstreams moving towards each other and then fanning out apart, which is what caused the lack of snow.
“This system started out as rain and then quickly changed over to snow in areas like North Battleford and Saskatoon,” Cragg said. “But as that cold air cut in from the North, you get this sharp boundary with these systems and right on the edge of the boundary you can get a huge difference in snowfall.”
Cragg said after these deformation zones, you can see the white of where the snow is by satellite and then a very sharp line where the snow stops. He added it can make it hard to create an accurate forecast.
“If you’re forecasting for an area right on the edge of that low (pressure system), it’s very hard to get it right because if you mistake where the low’s (pressure system) going to move by just 10 or 15 kilometres you can have an area like North Battleford seeing no snow or 10 to 15 cm,” he said.
Matt Kelly is battlefordsNOW's town municipal affairs and community reporter. He can be reached at [email protected] or tweet him @mattjkelly2.
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