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Warm weather for Mother's Day weekend, with an elevated avalanche risk in the Rockies

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This weekend will be the warmest weekend so far in 2024 in Calgary.

Daytime highs are expected to range from 23 C to 25 C with an abundance of sunshine. These clear skies are also expected to last overnight which will prove helpful for viewing the Aurora Borealis.

A notable geomagnetic storm is expected to create some intense auroras over the weekend.

A frontal system moving into northern Alberta Friday will bring stronger winds (gusts between 60-70 km/h) which will present additional challenges to firefighting efforts in that area.

Complicating matters is how dry things still are in the northern portion of the province. The rain/snow that was a part of the weather story in central and southern Alberta did not reach northern Alberta.

As such, the fire danger ratings in northern Alberta remain high.

Also concerning is the impact of this rapid warmup on the snow west of Calgary.

Avalanche Canada has issued high risk ratings and cautionary messages for mountain parks in Kananaskis Country, Banff National Park and Lake Louise.

Between the daytime heating and the clash of air masses from the incoming low pressure system in northern Alberta – there is a chance of some scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms in Calgary both Saturday and Sunday.

If they do move through, accumulations will mostly be minimal (one to two millimetres) with some areas seeing higher rainfall totals due to isolated pockets of convection activity.

There is a chance these storms could intensify as the track southeast on Saturday, so it would be wise to pay attention to weather watches/warnings.

Monday will include more steady rain with a seasonal daytime high and total rainfall accumlations of five to 10 millimetres in Calgary.

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