Old Farmer's Almanac predicts relatively mild winter in Canada

A man shovels out after a winter storm in St. John’s. N.L., on Jan. 5, 2014. Maritimers may not have to bring out their shovels too often this winter if the forecast from the Old Farmer’s Almanac is accurate. Photo from CP

Winter is coming, and while some people can’t wait for it, others already can’t wait for it to end.

There’s good news for both of these types of people. Yes, winter-like conditions are on the way, but this year is expected to be a little bit warmer than average.

That’s because according to Jack Burnett, the managing editor of the Old Farmer’s Almanac, this winter isn’t expected to pack as much of a punch as past winters in Canada.

“When you average the whole thing out, we see it being a degree or so warmer,” Burnett tells Yahoo Canada News. “Instead of a T. Rex of a winter, it’ll be more like a baby alpaca in a barn.”

The publication, which was founded in 1792, is calling for above normal average temperatures in most of Canada this winter, which covers November through March.

“In the entire map of Canada, we see nowhere where it’ll be below normal,” he explains. “In general, we see the entire country being a little bit warmer, a little bit drier, except for the Yukon and central Quebec and that little part of eastern Ontario that includes Ottawa.”

This image shows the Old Farmer’s Almanac 2017-18 winter forecast for Canada. Graphic from the Old Farmer’s Almanac

In southeastern Ontario, Quebec and Yukon, above normal snowfall is expected. In Atlantic Canada, it should be milder than past years as more rainfall is expected, and the amount of snowfall could be near or below normal. Elsewhere, the Old Farmer’s Almanac’s forecast calls for snowfall and precipitation amounts that are below normal.

Burnett says in three-quarters of the country, this winter should be “warmer and drier” than past ones “by a tiny bit.” However, he warns there will still be “many” bitter cold days across the country with snow and blizzards. After all, it’s still winter in Canada.

Based on an educated guess, Burnett provided some dates where he thinks Canadians will really start to feel the bitter chill of winter, and the predictions vary depending on geography.

In southern Ontario and the Maritimes, he says that point in time will be around November 15. In the Prairies, he thinks it’ll be earlier than that date. Quebecers may want to start bundling up around November 10 and residents of British Columbia can expect things to cool down during the last week of November, Burnett says.

And if you’re hoping for a white Christmas, Toronto might just be the place to be. According to Burnett, it’s expected to be “a tiny bit snowier, a tiny bit warmer” than a usual winter in the Big Smoke. But visitors should pack warm clothes; the last 10 days of December are forecasted as “really being the coldest and snowiest,” the managing editor warns.

The Accuweather forecast paints a different picture for winter 2017 in Canada: