Climate Comment for April 2023


A See-Saw Month

Submitted by Bill Caulfeild-Browne 

While April was just a little warmer than historically – by just 0.9C – the daily temperatures were all over the place. We started out with the lowest temperature of -6.8C on the 2nd and two weeks later we hit 23.5C here on the water.

It’s interesting to see the effect of the lake at this time of year. While Big Tub Harbour was getting the aforementioned -6.8C, it was -8.2C inland at the airport. On the other hand, when Big Tub got 23.5C, the airport saw 25.6C. This shows how the lake temperature modifies the shoreline climate.

Rainfall was copious at 93 mm, which is 32 mm more than historically, but by no means as wet as the 155 mm we got in April 2011. Most of it fell in just three days; 13 mm on the first, 34 mm on 5th and 22 mm on the 16th. We did not get any appreciable snow although it’s not unusual in April.

The rest of the Province was not as fortunate. Areas north of the Great Lakes saw as much as 300% of their normal white stuff, even causing road closures around Thunder Bay. Still, we did not get off scot-free; violent thunderstorms occurred on the first, with accompanying power outages. The following week saw freezing rain and ice storms that closed roads throughout the Province, cancelled schools and caused significant damage, particularly in Eastern Ontario.

The outlook for May is mixed. According to Environment and Climate Change Canada, there is one school of thought predicting a cooler May than normal while another is saying we’ll have a warm month. Take your choice. So far, as I write this on the 7th, it has been cool, but as May typically warms up a lot at the end, I wouldn’t dare to predict!