sk-regina-cold-2011

Bitterly cold temperatures were recorded around Saskatchewan on Tuesday. (CBC)

Many people in Saskatchewan woke up to the coldest day of the winter Tuesday morning, with temperatures plunging to the mid -30s C.

Environment Canada issued wind chill warnings early in the morning over virtually the entire south and central regions of the province.

An Arctic ridge of high pressure is getting the blame, the weather agency said.

At 8 a.m. CST it was -31 in Saskatoon, but with the wind factored in, it felt like -43. In Regina, it was -35, but it was less windy, so the wind chill made it feel like -41.

With furnaces running full-tilt, there's heavy demand on SaskPower's grid.

Power was briefly out in at least one neighbourhood in Regina at around 10 p.m. Monday night.

So far, no cold weather records have been set in the cities, according to CBC weather specialist Wayne Miskolczi, who noted that in Saskatoon, the record for Feb. 1 is -50, while in Prince Albert, the record is -56.

High wind chill values meant exposed flesh will freeze in less than 10 minutes.

The good news is that there'll be relief from the bitter cold in about a day, Miskolczi said.

In the southwest, for example, it could hit -1 on Wednesday, he said.

There'll be a slight warming during the day on Tuesday, but the wind will pick up, resulting in wind chills remaining high for now, Miskolczi said.