Early winter wallop buries parts of Ontario in 100+ cm of snow

Early winter wallop buries parts of Ontario in 100+ cm of snow

Intense and powerful snow squalls targeted several areas of southern Ontario over the weekend, with some of the hardest hit regions buried in 100+ cm of snow. It was part of the same dangerous lake-effect set-up that slammed western New York, and prompted travel bans for Buffalo and Erie County ahead of the busy Thanksgiving holiday week. More than 180 cm was reported in parts of Buffalo by Monday morning.

MUST SEE: Snow squalls large enough to bury cars in Buffalo, N.Y.

Squalls began blowing in from Lake Erie and Lake Ontario on Thursday, producing the first major snowstorm of the season for many communities a good month before the official start of winter. Even an epic round of thundersnow was captured amid an 'electrically active' snow squall.

"With the relatively warmer than normal lake temperatures, and the favourable winds aligned in the atmosphere -- with little to no directional wind shear -- squalls were able to set up and unload heaps and heaps of snow to several areas this past weekend," says Kelly Sonnenburg, a meteorologist at The Weather Network.

The setup was conducive for "super-snow squalls" to develop, measuring an impressive 500+ km in length at one time. Winds initially targeted the squalls to areas east of the Great Lakes, but as wind directions moved to be more out of the northwest through the weekend, the squalls followed suit.

Dangerous driving conditions were expected on many major roads over the weekend, including the QEW between Hamilton and Niagara, and the 401 between Cobourg and Kingston. Squalls completely snarled traffic in the Niagara region early on Saturday.

Widespread winter warnings were in effect and Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) had urged drivers to consider postponing non-essential travel until conditions improved.

RELATED: Buried: Why the Great Lakes produce some of the world’s heaviest snow

image - 2022-11-21T053607.197
image - 2022-11-21T053607.197

Parts of the Bruce Peninsula took the cake when it came to the most impressive snowfall totals of the event from Thursday through Sunday, with totals topping over 100 cm.

The town of Wiarton reported a whopping 125 cm of snow! Last Friday was their snowiest November day ever, with 44 cm recorded.

PHOTOS: Snow squalls large enough to bury cars hit Buffalo, N.Y.

Here's a closer look at how this potent wintry blast played out over the weekend:

WATCH: Thundersnow caught on camera as dangerous squalls target Buffalo

Click here to view the video

Thumbnail image courtesy: April Walker - Owen Sound, Ont.