Snowfall was two times heavier than normal
'In many cases, the snow you see out your window is the snow that’s been there since early December'
Senior climatologist David Philips from Environment Canada says this winter will go down as one the harshest on record for Amherst. March was also one of the coldest and snowiest.
AMHERST – The fact this winter is going down in the history books as one of the harshest on record should not come as a surprise to most Cumberland County residents.
David Phillips, a senior climatologist with Environment Canada, said the Amherst area has been a lot snowier and colder than normal, and conditions aren’t going to improve a lot the rest of April.
“It really has been a rough winter in the Maritimes. In many cases, the snow you see out your window is the snow that’s been there since early December,” Phillips said.
To date this winter, 400 centimetres of snow has fallen in the area. That’s compared to the normal snowfall of 209 centimetres.
It’s the fourth snowiest winter dating back to the 1930s.
And Phillips said there is, on average, 80 centimetres of snow on the ground, making it the second highest amount of snow on the ground on April 1 with 1967 being the highest (109 centimetres).
Looking back at March, the meteorologist said, it was a degree colder than normal.
“A lot misery came in March. Not only was there a lot more snow than normal, but it was colder than normal,” Phillips said. “Of the 13 snow events you had this winter, that’s of 10 centimetres or more, half of them came in March. So, in effect you had the second coldest and third snowiest March on record. When you combine them, it was probably the worst.”
While the worst of the snow should be over, he said there will be more snow in April and it’s still expected to be cooler than normal. Precipitation should be normal as well.
“Spring is coming, it’s just going to be a little reluctant to appear. That’s life in the Maritimes at this time of year,” Phillips said.