Last nights beautiful clear and cold break has set us up nicely for, I think, a bit of “Strait Effect” snow.
Update There is a Snowfall warming for East Coast of Vancouver Island, up to 15cm of snow tonight through tomorrow.
Over the next 24 hours a low is going to develop off of the West Coast of the Island and gradually move south. This will pull cold air out of the Interior, and across the Strait of Georgia.
BC Highway cam at Black Creek shows there has already been some snow fall there (north of Courtenay).
As the low develops and deepens a little the winds should become a little more persistent from the North and North East, drag over the air across the Strait, pick up moisture, and dump it onto the East Coast.
Whether Port Alberni gets any of that remains to be seen. EC is calling for 5-10cm. But personally I would say the East Coast is more likely to get the high end of that and we are more likely to get the low end. Sometimes we are included in the Strait effect stuff, other times the Beauforts act as a pretty effective block and we just get the cold air pouring over the Comox glacier instead. Most likely spots for significant accumulations will be from Cameron Lake to Coombs with possibly Parksville and Nanaimo as well.
Most likely times for heaviest snowfall should be early-mid Friday morning… the key will be whether it stays cold enough for snow. The Canadian model doesn’t think so. The GFS does… we’ll see who wins.
Here is the Canadian forecast model for 7AM Friday morning. Notice the low right off of the Island, headed south, with tight isobars on the North East side which should draw some moderate winds over the Strait.