Alberta warned to brace for 25 cm of snow by Friday
Cold front coming from B.C. expected to bring rapid drop in temperatures
Much of Alberta is in store for a big blast of winter weather with as much as 25 centimetres of snow likely to fall by Friday afternoon in the mountain parks and up to 10 centimetres in many other parts of the province, Environment Canada warns.
A Pacific low is expected to come through central B.C. Thursday night, carrying a band of snow over the mountains and through the foothills of Alberta.
Initially, the agency said in a special weather statement that uncertainty remained as to where the majority of the snow would fall.
But in an updated statement issued Thursday afternoon, those living in southern Alberta were just told to brace for a "dramatic change" in the weather.
"In the Calgary, Brooks, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Okotoks, and Cypress Hills areas temperatures will start out well above freezing with widely scattered showers," the agency said. "However the cold front with this system will bring gusty northerly winds to 80 kilometres per hour and a sharp drop in temperatures.
"The front may also bring heavier pockets of snow and blowing snow as well."
The abrupt change in weather will likely lead to hazardous travel conditions, particularly during Friday afternoon's commute.
In Banff and Jasper national parks, Environment Canada has issued snowfall warnings.
Those areas are expected to see snowfall ranging between 10 and 15 centimetres, with 10 centimetres of accumulation expected by late Friday.
"Be prepared to adjust your driving with changing road conditions. Prepare for quickly changing and deteriorating travel conditions," the agency said.