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Province braces for late blast of winter

Jeff Himmelman takes advantage of the warm weather to try out his new slack line in the Hydrostone on Sunday afternoon. It’s going to be a far different story on Monday with a return to winter. A storm is expected to bring 15 centimetres of snow to parts of the province. - Ryan Taplin
Jeff Himmelman takes advantage of the warm weather to try out his new slack line in the Hydrostone on Sunday afternoon. It’s going to be a far different story on Monday with a return to winter. A storm is expected to bring 15 centimetres of snow to parts of the province. - Ryan Taplin

Old Man Winter has some growl and grumble left yet.

April showers, not likely, mutters the cranky Old Man as he prepares to dump up to 15 centimetres of wet snow on parts of the province Monday.

“It will push into western regions of mainland Nova Scotia just after sunrise and reach Halifax by noon or shortly after,” Saltwire meteorologist Cindy Day said of a low-pressure system that was developing late Sunday afternoon across the lower Great Lakes.

“It will come at us and then get pushed off the coast. The heaviest snow will likely be on the western side of things — Digby, Yarmouth and Shelburne and then it peters off as you go up toward New Glasgow and Truro.”

Day said those central mainland areas will get less snow and only five to 10 centimetres should be left over for Cape Breton and Prince Edward Island.

A slight wind will accompany the spring snow, gusting up to 50 or 60 kilometres an hour and swinging around from the east to the west. Temperatures will be very near freezing but Day does not see much rain in the system.

“It’s going to be wet snow and, probably for Halifax, an ice pellet mix.

“Maybe a little rain changeover along the coast but because of the position of that cold high to the east of us, it’s going to be more of a snow event.”

Day said the bright, sunny Sunday experienced across the province should temper the effect of the snow both in people’s minds and on the ground.

“We had such a beautiful day with so much sun, there is some heat in the pavement and things have been warming up. The first five or six centimetres is probably just going to melt. Then it will sit on the grass.”

Even the snow that sits won’t sit for long.

“Snow will start in Halifax around noon or shortly after and it should be done by 2 o’clock in the morning,” Day said. “Tuesday will be cloudy with sunny periods and a plus-three and it will be six or seven degrees later in the week so the snow is not sticking around.”

She said when the warm April sun breaks through Tuesday, the snow won't stand much chance of lingering.

And lest we get too exasperated with Old Man Winter, Day said a little winter blast at this time of year is not extraordinary.

“If we get the full 15 in Halifax, it still won’t be a record snowfall for April,” Day said. “In 1963, we got 28.4 centimetres of snow on April 11 in Halifax.

“It’s not that unusual. Almost every year we get something like this. Last year on April 8, we got 23 centimetres of snow just outside of the city. It happens. Almost every year we get a good push of snow and it melts the next day and we forget about it and move on.”

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