Overachieving squalls give Calgary its snowiest January day on record

The last 24 hours in southern Alberta have been a perfect example of why winter is a force to be reckoned with.

It was a snowy Friday for many in southern Alberta, especially in parts of Calgary. In fact, there was enough of the white stuff on the ground to set a new monthly record in the major city.

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Calgary International Airport (YYC) picked up a whopping 33.6 cm on Jan. 27, surpassing the previous daily January record of 25.4 cm from Jan. 3, 1913. It was enough to make for a new monthly record and was the biggest daily snowfall total at the airport since May 6, 1981 (48.4 cm).

Friday was the seventh snowiest day on record for YYC, with the amount roughly doubling the monthly snowfall average of 17 cm.


Significant snow squalls associated with an Arctic front brought the record-breaking snowfall across sections of Calgary on Friday.

Now, not every part of the city saw this much snow. The downtown area didn't receive nearly as much snow since the band stalled over the airport and northeastern sections of Calgary.

Heavy snow seen across southern Alberta made for slippery and hazardous conditions along the QE2, with multiple backups reported. The good news for drivers is that road conditions should improve over the weekend.


The potent squalls dropped as much as 7 cm in one hour at the airport on Friday (2-3 p.m. local time).

After some residual snow fell overnight Friday, a ridge of high pressure moved in Saturday morning to allow for improving conditions.

WATCH: Calgary sees new January record for snowfall

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With files from Tyler Hamilton, a meteorologist at The Weather Network.

Thumbnail courtesy of @Huzaiyn/Twitter, taken in Calgary, Alta.