Ontario may have been blessed with above average temperatures these past few days, but don't get too comfortable - According to The Weather Network, a massive winter storm is approaching Ontario, and it's expected to bring over 20 cm of snow.
Dr. Doug Gillham, a staff meteorologist, says "confidence is high" that very heavy snowfall will hit southern Ontario by Wednesday next week. However, since the system is still five days out, there are multiple possible scenarios currently in play.
Gillham says the most likely scenario is that the system will be stronger than expected, allowing it to move north towards the Great Lakes. Such would bring "widespread moderate to heavy snow along the 401 corridor from Windsor to Toronto and Montreal," as well as to central Ontario and Ottawa.
The other scenario, which is less likely to happen, has a weaker system moving south of the border, centralizing on Upstate New York and Quebec but not impacting Ontario as much.
"If the more northerly track verifies, this would be the most widespread storm of the winter thus far for southern Ontario," explains Gillham. "For the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area, this has the potential to be similar to or even exceed the snowfall that we saw with the Christmas Eve storm."
The Weather Network reports a very preliminary forecast for Tuesday night and Wednesday of 10 to 20 cm of snow for the 401 corridor and Niagara, and up to 25 cm for eastern Ontario (Brockville to Ottawa). However, significant snow is likely to start falling as early as Saturday night and throughout the day on Sunday.
Some models have even forecasted as much as 40 to 50 cm of snow, however, Gillham says such models are extreme and are "well in excess of what we currently expect across southern Ontario and Quebec."