This winter was honestly one of the strangest winters ever across much of Canada. And has that ever been true in southern Manitoba.
In Winnipeg, December was the 9th mildest on record, January was the 3rd mildest and February was the 14th mildest. As a result, with an average mean temperature of -9.7°C, winter 2011/2012 was the 4th mildest winter on record in the city, since records began in 1873. February also marked the 8th consecutive month above normal, a streak which began in July.
Top 5 warmest winters (mean temperature)
1. -7.2°C 1877/1878
2. -8.2°C 1997/1998
3. -9.5°C 1986/1987
4. -9.7°C 2011/2012
5. -10.1°C 1930/1931
Here are the details of the winter:
Despite technically being in a La Nina, a strong AO kept arctic air bottled up north throughout most of the winter. Mild Pacific flows of air were frequent as a result. 20 days from December to February saw temperatures above zero, above the normal of 10 days. That was quite meager in comparison to surrounding towns. For instance, Morden saw 41 days with above zero temperatures!
|Biking in January|
We did not reach -30°C once this winter in Winnipeg, only the second time that has occurred since 1873. The coldest temperature was a measly -28.9°C, the warmest winter minimum on record.
Another highlight of the winter was Christmas. It was a rare brown Christmas for much of southwestern Manitoba and the western/southern RRV. It was not officially a brown Christmas in Winnipeg, although snow depth was just 2 cm. It was the first brown Christmas in southern Manitoba since 1997. In WPG, since 1955 only 7 Christmases have had 3 cm of snow or less on the ground.
Snowfalls were hard to come by this winter. At least, that was the case until late February when 4 systems dumped almost 20 cm over the city in about a week. December was the 9th least snowy December on record. From December to February, 44.2 cm of snow fell in the city, slightly below the normal 57.1 cm, therefore not overly significant. Although, melting was frequent, explaining why snow depth was so minimal. It certainly isn't every winter that you can see grass in January and February!
|Christmas in Emerson|