Calgary weather

March 4, 2018 3:11 am
Updated: March 4, 2018 3:12 am

Calgary sees snowiest start to March on record

Snow piled up on this southwest Calgary patio set after a March snowstorm.

Brenda Briggs
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It will likely be of no surprise to Calgarians that the start of March 2018 will make the record books with regards to snowfall.

Not only did the city break a one-day snowfall record on March 2, 2018, after receiving 13 centimetres of snow, the first three days of the month also appear to be the snowiest start to March on record.

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Environment Canada historical records for snowfall go back to 1885 and according to that data, Calgary has never had a snowier first three days of March.

It snowed in Calgary for 44 straight hours from Thursday night to Saturday afternoon, dropping up to 30 centimetres of snow in some parts of the city.

According to the Environment Canada website, Calgary saw a total of 18.3 centimetres of snow at the official weather station at the Calgary International Airport during this snow event.

March is typically the snowiest month of the year in Calgary, with an average of 22.7 centimetres of snow. This latest snow event brought nearly a month’s worth of snow in just three days.

READ MORE: Snow route parking ban starts on Sunday in Calgary

Historically the beginning of March starts off mild with regards to precipitation. There has been little to no snow for the first three days of the month 40 percent of the past 134 years.

This latest precipitation comes on the heels of an incredibly snowy February where Calgary saw nearly triple the monthly average snowfall of 14.5 centimeters.

READ MORE: Calgary's Deerfoot Trail reopened after 5-hour shutdown due to dangerous road conditions, collisions

By month’s end, Environment Canada recorded 43.3 centimetres of snow, making it the third snowiest February since 1885.

Since Feb. 1 to March 3, 2018, it has snowed 23 out of 31 days, or nearly three-quarters of the days. Typically February would see eight days with snow and just over 11 in March.

Picture of the snow in southwest Calgary March 3, 2018.

Michelle Urquhart

February was also an historically cold month, with 19 out of the first 22 days below average in temperature. It will go down as the fifteenth coldest on record out of 138 years.

READ MORE: Coldest Family Day in February in 24 years

March is also starting off with cooler temperatures. Fore​cast models suggest the temperature will not reach seasonal averages until the second week of the month.

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