While you may not need to break out the sunscreen quite yet, you should be able to retire your toque for the next couple of weeks.

Brian Proctor, Meteorologist with Environment Canada says an upper ridge is building quite strongly over much of the Rockies. "It is one of those lovely ridges this time of year, it's a warm ridge rather than the cold ridge we have seen much of the last three months plaguing western Canada."

With the mercury rising, Proctor says we should see things start to dry up."We are looking for very spring-like conditions for the start of spring this year. We will probably see a rapid snow melt with the way things are looking, our long-range model might be one of the outliers right now. The forecast for sort of Tuesday and Wednesday is for 14 in Calgary and 21 on Wednesday, and if we look at Cochrane, we see 13 on Tuesday and 16 on the 20th."

Proctor did share that Calgary may see a more rapid melt than Cochrane as our lows are still anticipated to fall below zero. "It may slow down the melt a little bit and make for some slippery conditions in the morning hours, but in general, a gradual sort of melt kind of situation with the overnight lows dropping below that freezing mark still."

People should definitely start feeling some relief after an anomaly of cold arctic air settled in for almost all of February and early March. "That cold air was firmly entrenched and it's only really now edging up and pulling eastward as the warmer ridge builds up across the western portion of the continent. Part of that is also associated with that very strong low-pressure system that the Americans are dealing with which is now transiting through the northwest of Ontario and through the Thunder Bay area, and that has really allowed for things to shift and change the flow pattern." 

With that being said we should see spring-like temps stick around for at least the start of spring. 

Below is the 5-day forecast anticipated for the Cochrane area:

  • Today

    Clearing near noon. Wind northwest 20 km/h gusting to 40 becoming light near noon. High plus 4. Wind chill minus 12 in the morning. UV index 4 or moderate.

  • Tonight

    A few clouds. Wind up to 15 km/h. Low minus 11. Wind chill minus 4 in the evening and minus 14 overnight.

  • Saturday

    Sunny. High plus 5. UV index 4 or moderate.

  • Saturday night

    Clear. Low minus 9.

  • Sunday

    Sunny. High 9.

  • Sunday night

    Clear. Low minus 9.

  • Monday

    Sunny. High 13.

  • Monday night

    Clear. Low minus 5.

  • Tuesday

    Sunny. High 13.

  • Tuesday night

    Clear. Low minus 1.

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