Another breezy day is here, and yes, the next Alberta clipper in the forecast continues to loom over Thursday according to CMOS Accredited Weathercaster Chris Sumner

Temperatures will drop throughout Wednesday as northwesterly winds, up to 50 km/h, draw cooler air into the region, settling slightly below seasonal in the -11 to -13 range this afternoon.

"And then the rollercoaster upward will begin again," noted Sumner. "The strong southerly flow, gusting up to 50 km/h in the morning ahead of that clipper’s arrival Thursday, will send daytime highs soaring above zero tomorrow, somewhere between +3 and +5. We’re expecting snow to start in the morning hours, changing to showers as temperatures warm during the day."

Sumner noted, based on the current track of the low pressure system, the Southeastern corner of the province is expected to see the most snow before the changeover, between 5 to 10cms. The Red River Valley west to the Manitoba escarpment is in line for 5cms, while the Southwest will see the least snow, potentially just a few centimeters.

"Like we’ve seen several times over the past few weeks, winds will shift Thursday afternoon to northwesterly, gusting to 60 km/h, and depending on how much snow has fallen, blowing snow and reduced visibility will more than likely be a factor to consider. Another variable to keep in mind, is the warm weather Tuesday, and the freezing overnight, has created a crust over much of the snow-pack, and that crust will help inhibit that snow-pack from blowing."

What does that mean from a driving perspective?

"The blowing snow concerns will be essentially linked to whatever snowfall occurs Thursday," said Sumner. "This is a different scenario than previous clippers when a combination of blowing falling snow, and snow-pack, led to significantly reduced visibility."

This will be a here today, gone today kind of system, but the windy conditions will last into Friday as high pressure sliding southward from the Northwest Territories will bring a significantly colder air-mass to the area, with highs Friday maxing out between -19 to -21. That would mean a potential 25 degree drop in just a day. As we look into the weekend, a mix of sun and cloud and temperatures a few degrees below seasonal as several weak disturbances move through.

"The take away for Thursday at this point, a potentially messy day with snow and showers likely, freezing rain is also a possibility, with gusty conditions leading to some blowing snow and reduced visibility," he said. "Highway conditions will be potentially icy and slick, so keep an eye on those if you are planning on travelling tomorrow."