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Much colder weather coming to most of the NWT next week

Workers clear snow from a downtown Yellowknife parking lot on November 24, 2022
Workers clear snow from a downtown Yellowknife parking lot on November 24, 2022. Ollie Williams/Cabin Radio

After an unusually balmy fall, most areas of the Northwest Territories will plunge back into wintry temperatures by the middle of next week.

The territory just recorded its fourth-warmest summer in 75 years, according to Environment Canada, and warmer-than-average weather has stuck around.

Hay River was hit by rain on Tuesday that promptly froze, a November surprise that caused an afternoon of chaos for people trying to get around. Yellowknife has been struggling to cope with a significant dump of snow.

Temperatures in some parts of the territory have been around 10C higher than average.



But the forecast suggests that will change by the middle of next week.

Yellowknife can expect a week of daytime temperatures below -20C, Environment Canada predicts. In Fort Simpson, Norman Wells and Inuvik, overnight lows are set to dip below -30C.

The colder weather may set in a little later in the week for Fort Smith and Hay River, but temperatures below -20C are still expected.



Beyond that, December “looks like it’s going to be a cold month,” Environment Canada senior climatologist David Phillips told CBC’s The Trailbreaker on Thursday morning.

“It’s going to start next week but then, in the first full week of December? Oh, it’s going to be raw,” Phillips told the broadcaster.

“But it’s not necessarily going to stay the course … this back-and-forth, yo-yo weather may be the kind of conditions that we see more of.”

Separately, a snowfall warning has been issued for the Wrigley region of the Dehcho.

“Heavy snow is expected today and tonight, with total amounts near 10 cm,” Environment Canada reported on Thursday morning.

“The heaviest snow will fall this afternoon and evening. Snow will end by Friday morning.”