A cold front making its way across the Prairies this weekend will trigger severe thunderstorms in Saskatchewan and Manitoba on Saturday afternoon. Heavy rain is likely in portions of Alberta through early next week, with some areas expecting as much as 50 mm of rain. More on the storm timing and a warm-up next week, below.
SATURDAY: SEVERE STORMS TO START THE WEEKEND
Heat warnings remain widespread on the Prairies as the heat wave that blanketed the western half of the country loses its last grip over the region. A cold front marching east will sweep away the last of the excessive heat, leaving behind more seasonal temperatures in its wake.
The warm air will allow instability to build over much of Saskatchewan and Manitoba on Saturday. The combination of instability from the warmth and lift from the front will lead to a risk for thunderstorms across the two provinces.
Thunderstorms are likely to fire up across eastern Saskatchewan with the heat of the day on Saturday, gradually moving into Manitoba through the evening hours.
Some of the storms could be severe, with heavy rainfall, strong wind gusts, and small hail possible.
Farther west, a general risk for thunderstorms covers parts of Interior British Columbia and Alberta’s foothills, including Calgary.
The Calgary area saw powerful thunderstorms on Friday night, including large hail that dented cars and shattered windows. We shouldn’t see a repeat of that on Saturday, but it’s a good idea to keep an eye on the radar and head inside if storms approach. If you can hear thunder, the storm is close enough for lightning to threaten your safety.
SUNDAY AND BEYOND: HEAVY RAIN FOR THE ALBERTA FOOTHILLS, A BRIEF COOLDOWN FOR EARLY WEEK
Sunday will see the risk for severe thunderstorms follow the cold front into northern Ontario.
A boundary over the southern half of Alberta will spark a chance for heavy rain over the next couple of days. Widespread totals of 20-30 mm are expected through Tuesday.
The heavy rain could lead to a risk for flooding along waterways that are still running high from the rapid mountain snowmelt that occurred during the peak of last week’s heat wave.
Cooler conditions will spread across the Prairies early in the week. Monday’s highs will reach the lower 20s in Calgary, Edmonton, and Saskatoon, while afternoon temperatures will reach the mid-20s farther south toward Regina and Winnipeg.
Above-seasonal temperatures will return to the Prairies by the end of the week, but “we are looking at typical heat rather than record heat,” according to Dr. Doug Gillham, a meteorologist for The Weather Network.
Stay with The Weather Network for the latest updates.