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Spring Forecast 2018 and exclusive sneak peek at summer

The Weather Network logo The Weather Network 2018-03-01 The Weather Network

Spring is a temperamental season as winter tries to hold on against the building warmth, higher sun angle and the inevitable increase in daylight. Read more to find out what the temperature and precipitation will bring for all Canadians.

"While dramatic swings in weather are a normal part of the season, this spring looks to have a particularly volatile mood," says Chris Scott, chief meteorologist with The Weather Network.

Visit our Complete Guide to Spring 2018 for a preview of the Spring Forecast, tips to plan for it and much more.

Spring temperature pattern

a close up of a map © Provided by The Weather Network

Areas from southern Ontario to Atlantic Canada have already had a few tastes of spring weather, but these regions will struggle at times to maintain consistent warm weather during the upcoming months as winter plans a parting shot for these regions.

Across western and central Canada, winter weather will linger longer than normal, but spring will only be delayed, not denied.

QUICK: What's your spring IQ?

Spring precipitation pattern

a close up of a map © Provided by The Weather Network

An active storm track with systems tapping into abundant Gulf and Atlantic moisture should result in above normal precipitation from the Great Lakes to Atlantic Canada.

The southern Prairies could also experience above normal precipitation. Meanwhile, the remainder of Canada will see near normal precipitation, with the exception of northwestern B.C. and southwestern parts of the Yukon territory.

British Columbia

The arrival of consistent spring weather will be delayed this year across the province. Cooler than normal temperatures are expected, especially during the first half of the season across most of B.C. However, the final numbers for the season will be near seasonal for the South Coast, including Vancouver and Victoria.

The near normal precipitation and cooler temperatures for the mountains and interior will allow for an extended ski season, and potentially a delayed start to the wild fire season. However, this region will transition to a warmer and drier than normal pattern late in the spring, with a very warm and dry summer expected.


Consistent spring weather will be delayed this year as we expect a colder than normal March and early April across the Prairies. The minimal winter snowpack and cooler spring weather pattern reduces the risk of flooding from spring thaw.

Soil moisture is a concern for large parts of the region after a dry summer last year and below normal snowfall through the winter. There are indications that spring will feature a more active weather pattern across the southern Prairies, bringing some relief from the very dry conditions. However, confidence in this part of the forecast is low, but having the wetter pattern verify is especially important as we expect a warm and dry pattern as we head into summer.

Ontario and Quebec

Winter will still have several parting shots following the extended spring tease that many experienced during late February. March will bring periods of late winter weather, with a higher than usual threat for winter storms. While significant periods of warmth are expected at times, chillier stretches of weather will tend to win out overall for most. The exception may be along the 401-corridor where there will be periods of warm and cold weather that will average out to a near normal spring.

An active storm track is expected across the region, bringing above normal precipitation and stormy weather at times through the spring season. We do not expect more rainy days than normal, but the Gulf of Mexico and the western Atlantic Ocean are much warmer than normal, and systems that tap into moisture from these regions will bring heavy rainfall at times. Therefore, flooding will continue to be a concern during the spring season. However, for southern parts of the region, the winter snowpack has already melted or at least been greatly reduced due to the extended February thaw.

Atlantic Canada

While it has been a relatively mild winter across Atlantic Canada, winter will still have several parting shots for the region, including the threat for a few nor'easters. For some places, the biggest snowfall of the year could still be on the horizon (keep in mind the context – some areas have not had a classic winter storm).

Back and forth temperature swings should come close to offsetting, but with more potential for warmth to outweigh the periods of colder weather. An active storm track will tap into subtropical moisture at times and bring above normal precipitation to most of the region through the spring season.

Northern Canada

Northern parts of the Yukon, Nunavut and Northwest Territories will experience above normal temperatures for the season as a whole. Meanwhile, southern parts will generally see near normal temperatures. However, southern Yukon, including Whitehorse, is expected to be colder than normal during the spring season. Precipitation is expected to be near normal across the region, with the exception of southwestern parts of the Yukon where below normal precipitation is expected.

Preliminary look ahead to summer

a close up of a map © Provided by The Weather Network

We expect a warm to hot summer for most of North America. Most regions should see temperatures that are either near normal or above during the months of June, July and August. The one region that appears to be the least likely to see a hot summer is centred on the Great Lakes.

To some extent this resembles the pattern that we saw last summer, with the warmest weather found across western Canada and Atlantic Canada, with the cooler weather found in between. However, we do expect that this summer will be warmer in the Great Lakes region than it was last summer.

We expect that a big story during the summer season will be worsening drought conditions across western and central parts of the United States, with a significant impact on agriculture and wildfires. As we develop our final summer forecast we will be closely analyzing the threat for these drought conditions to extend north into parts of Canada.

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