April 3, 2019: Better Light

I got home slightly earlier today. With the sun low in the western sky, I still couldn’t get good pictures of the Winnipeg River, but I can summarize what I saw: near Minaki, there are patches of open water, while the Big Straight is still frozen where it is wide with a more sluggish current. From the Dalles through to the headwaters on Lake of the Woods, there’s a lot of open water where the current is strong in the main channel. Quieter bays are still frozen.

And now, on to what I could get clear pictures of.

Looking south west over Kenora with the headwaters of the Winnipeg River in the foreground. Downtown Kenora and Kenora Bay are at the left of the picture, and Safety Bay is near the center of the frame. The bad news: recent snow flurries have restored a beautiful white layer of reflective snow on the ice. The better news: open water on Keewatin Channel is expanding towards Safety Bay.

Here’s a slightly closer look at the Keewatin Channel and Devil’s Gap areas.

In this picture, Kenora’s downtown Whitecap Pavilion is at the bottom of the photo, peeking above the dashboard. The east end of Coney Island is in the middle of the picture, and Keewatin Channel is visible in the distance at the upper right. Zoom in there to see the area where the current is expanding the channel waters towards those at the Keewatin Bridge. There’s little progress at Devil’s Gap.

Remember, you can click on these pictures to see them full-screen, and if you then click on that larger picture, it should zoom to a much higher resolution.

Yesterday, I  couldn’t see Pine Portage Bay or Longbow Lake because a big snow flurry obscured them. Here’s a picture of how they look following that snowfall.

I’m afraid it looks more like January than April. This fresh snow cover is not working in our favour, which brings me to the topic of the forecast.

For some weeks now, the forecast has been along the lines of: “we just have a few more cold days, and then things are going to warm up.” And then the warming trend seems to get postponed for a few more days. My mother used to say, “Jam tomorrow, and jam yesterday, but never jam today.” This was a (Welsh?) folk saying that means that although you’ve had it before, and will one day have it again, the hope of having a luxury now are likely to be disappointed. I am reminded of this because the abnormally warm weather I eagerly anticipated for this spring seems to keep receding.

Don’t be too discouraged. One thing that makes the fourteen day forecast at the Weather Network look as if it’s being revised downward is that normal temperatures go up in the spring. So although we don’t see temperatures rocketing above normal, it is getting slowly warmer. Spring is coming, even if it’s not arriving with a bang. A few days ago, they were showing a seasonal average range as a daytime high of 4ºC, with an overnight low of -6ºC. In other words, it’s pretty typical to have daily mean temperatures of just about freezing at the end of March. Now that we’re into April, they show a normal high as being 6ºC and the low at -4ºC, representing a subtle shift to more of the day being above freezing.

However, a sudden switch to unusually warm weather has not happened, and I don’t see it coming in the latest round of fourteen and sixteen day forecasts.

What we might get is rain tomorrow and a warm weekend. That would help.

 

 

 

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