Ontario and Quebec are in the path of a Colorado low storm system that is expected to bring freezing rain and sleet to parts of the provinces Monday evening, into Tuesday afternoon.
“Tomorrow night there will probably be some snow showers and flurries across that region, not much but some snow showers, the wind is going to pick up and then by Wednesday, the storm is gone,” Brett Anderson, senior meteorologist at AccuWeather said.
These Colorado lows are quite common and as the name suggests, start in the U.S. state of Colorado.
“Typically, they track across the U.S. plaines and then up into the Great Lakes region,” Anderson said. “Its’a common storm and a common storm track.”
According to Anderson, this Colorado low storm system is moving towards the Great Lakes into Monday the evening, causing concerns about freezing rain.
“As [the storm] moves northeastward, it’s going to be moving into a cold air mass that’s still sitting over parts of Ontario and Quebec, especially near the surface,” Anderson said. “The air way up above the surface is actually warming above freezing but close to the surface, the temperatures are still at or below freezing so that creates a setup of sleet or freezing rain.”
The Ottawa, Ont. region is expected to be hit hardest by this icy precipitation over the next 24 hours, or so.
“By tomorrow I would say ice is going to be confined near Ottawa during at least the morning hours into early afternoon,” Anderson said. “With that amount of ice there’s certainly potential for the weighing down of trees and branches, and possibly some power outages in those areas.”
Barrie, Peterborough and Kingston will also see significant precipitation Monday night, with the Toronto area not expected to see a significant amount of freezing rain and sleet.
As the storm system moves farther east into Quebec, towards Montreal, snow on Monday evening will turn into freezing rain and sleet later in the night, and into Tuesday morning.
“Montreal and points northeast along the St. Lawrence River Valley, I would say there are concerns about a sustained period of freezing rain or sleet there,” Anderson said. “Although, I think the worst problems will be just outside the city, just north of the city of Montreal.”
For residents of Ontario and Quebec, as the storm system leaves by Wednesday afternoon, weather experts are looking at a quiet forecast for the rest of the month and into the beginning of February. That being said, the arctic air may return in the second week of the month.
“[We] may see some showers going in Saturday but…probably looking at above normal temperatures,” Anderson said. “That’s going to be the case through the first week of February and then there’s indications that around the second week of February, it could turn very cold once again across Ontario and into Quebec.”