Wilderness North's weather outlook for those on the water

Celebrating 30 Years of Wilderness North  –          

Transitional Weather

This week began with almost balmy temperatures and these, combined with sunshine, should remove the remaining snow from the landscape. However, the next few days will feature another return to cool conditions. This see-saw of conditions looks likely to continue with a switch from cool to warm early next week.

Some people have been complaining that this is the latest spring on record. Not quite. There is still some snow on the ground, especially in shaded areas but spring 1996 still has the awards for lateness. Winter started in early October 1995 and, aside from a few balmy weeks in December that reached 10C (50F), lasted until well past season opener. At this time in May there was still about one foot (30 cm) of snow on the ground in a broad band from Armstrong to Geraldton. Trace amounts were common around Thunder Bay and northern Minnesota.

A late snow melt usually has other consequences  – late ice out and usually, a delay in the forest fire season. In 1996 most northern lakes were still not ice free in early June but hot temperatures, bright sunshine and lack of rain brought on intense fire activity. One of the givens in dealing with forest fires in Northern Ontario is that water bombers can access water from nearly lakes. Fortunately, the ice melted just in time (as it probably will this year too) and a relatively average summer followed.

Looking forward to summer,

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