Snow to bring hazardous travel to B.C. coast, even more on the way
Wednesday will be a test of patience and skill for anyone in British Columbia travelling through Vancouver Island and parts of the Lower Mainland. The perfect ingredients for snow at lower elevations have combined to bring a winter wonderland for even Vancouver and Victoria.
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Cold outflow winds funneling through the Fraser Valley and Howe Sound have tapped into moisture from a low just to the south of the region, over the Washington coast. This moisture is just enough to allow for snow to fall at lower elevations.
Temperatures across the region will struggle to climb much above freezing through Wednesday afternoon. In fact, cities like Victoria and Nanaimo aren't expected to warm above zero. Vancouver will just barely make it above the freezing mark at plus 1°C.
Outflow winds blowing over the Strait of Georgia will be forced up the east side of Vancouver Island and will work together to generate "strait-effect snow" across southern Vancouver Island. This will make any travel along the Malahat and up Highway 19 be slow and slippery, so caution while travelling in this area is advised. Adding to that, local blowing snow could at times reduce visibility.
Accumulations will likely range from a few centimetres near Victoria, to 5-10 cm as you head northward along Highway 19 and towards inland Vancouver Island.
Metro Vancouver and parts of the Lower Mainland will see a few flurries throughout the day, although the snow will not necessarily be sticking around.
While Wednesday's snow will likely have less of an impact for the Lower Mainland, we are closely watching as another low-pressure system is set to slide down the coast this weekend. This system is set to bring even more widespread accumulating snow for the south coast, including Vancouver and Victoria.
Check back with The Weather Network in the coming days for more precise details for B.C.