‘Milder than normal’ winter ahead for Edmonton, senior climatologist says

Edmontonians can look forward to an El Niño winter, with milder than normal temperatures weather, says David Phillips, senior climatologist for Environment Canada.

El Niño is associated with warmer than normal waters in the Pacific ocean.

“We’re showing that the winter will be milder than normal because the Pacific water temperatures are warmer and when that happens we generally see less of an Arctic flow and more of a Pacific flow,” Phillips said Tuesday.

October and November could prove to be warmer than normal, though there will still be cold days, he said.

“We never cancel winter,” but Edmonton should experience some thawing and perhaps a shorter winter, Phillips said.

While Edmonton has been experiencing an “exceptionally record-cold fall” people should not be thinking that winter has already arrived, he said.

September “gives you no sense at all of how the winter will play out,” Phillips said, describing last month as “the cruelest September ever.”

The Edmonton International Airport recorded 38.4 centimetres of snow last month. The normal for September is one centimetre, he said.

The previous record for snow at the airport for September was 12.9 centimetres in 1965.

Also, there were only three days the temperature rose above 20 C, whereas in 2017 there were 15, Phillips said.

The reason?

“A meteorological freak” — the most vigorous and strongest high-pressure system seen in North America in 60 years, he said.

Usually these systems last a week, but this one continued for three and a half weeks.

“It stayed put. It didn’t move and it was like creating a pipeline of cold air right from Siberia right down to Edmonton,” Phillips said.

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Sherwood Park

Sherwood Park is a large hamlet in Alberta, Canada within Strathcona County that is recognized as an urban service area.[7] It is located adjacent to the City of Edmonton’s eastern boundary,[8] generally south of Highway 16 (Yellowhead Trail), west of Highway 21 and north of Highway 630 (Wye Road).[9] Other portions of Sherwood Park extend beyond Yellowhead Trail and Wye Road, while Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) separates Refinery Row to the west from the balance of the hamlet to the east.[9]

Sherwood Park was established in 1955 on farmland of the Smeltzer family, east of Edmonton. With a population of 70,618 in 2016,[6] Sherwood Park has enough people to be Alberta’s seventh largest city, but technically retains the status of a hamlet. The Government of Alberta recognizes the Sherwood Park Urban Service Area as equivalent to a city.


Sherwood Park, originally named Campbelltown, was founded by John Hook Campbell and John Mitchell in 1953 when the Municipal District of Strathcona No. 83 approved their proposed development of a bedroom community east of Edmonton. The first homes within the community were marketed to the public in 1955. Canada Post intervened on the name of Campbelltown due to the existence of several other communities in Canada within the same name, so the community’s name was changed to Sherwood Park in 1956.

The Sherwood Park Urban Service Area is located in the Edmonton Capital Region along the western edge of central Strathcona County adjacent to the City of Edmonton.[8] The majority of the community is bound by Highway 16 (Yellowhead Highway) to the north, Highway 21 to the east, Highway 630 (Wye Road) to the south, and Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) to the west. The Refinery Row portion of Sherwood Park is located across Anthony Henday Drive to the west, between Sherwood Park Freeway and Highway 16. Numerous developments fronting the south side of Wye Road, including Wye Gardens, Wye Crossing, Salisbury Village and the Estates of Sherwood Park, are also within the community. Lands north of Highway 16 and south of Township Road 534/Oldman Creek between Range Road 232 (Sherwood Drive) to the west and Highway 21 to the east are also within the Sherwood Park urban service area.

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