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Mild air pushes into southern Ontario -- but winter exists north of the city

Staff writers
January 11, 2013 — Most of the GTA's remaining snowbanks are likely to melt as potentially record-breaking temperatures move into southern Ontario this weekend.

Rainfall forecast
Rainfall forecast

It will be feeling more like spring in many of southern Ontario's major cities this the weekend, courtesy of a low pressure system from the U.S. 

"The rain started to pick up in southwestern Ontario early Friday and continued to push north into the Greater Toronto Area," says Brian Dillon, a meteorologist at The Weather Network. "Up to 20 mm of rain is likely over most of the south through Friday."

According to Environment Canada, freezing rain is possible near and northeast of a line from Simcoe County to Brockville. 

Freezing rain warnings have been issued for a swath of regions from Algonquin Park into the Ottawa Valley.

Snow and ice expected to melt across southern Ontario by Saturday (courtesy: Eija Ferring)
Snow and ice expected to melt across southern Ontario by Saturday (courtesy: Eija Ferring)

"On Saturday, southerly winds will usher in very mild air and some places could see temperatures rise into the low double digits." 

There's the potential for several daily temperature records to be set over the weekend and any snow that still covers the ground will likely melt by Saturday. 

Police officials are reminding the public to stay off any ice surfaces. The warmer weather and rain will result in weak and compromised conditions.

Despite a blast of wintery weather late in the year, much of southern Ontario embraced a warmer than normal December -- but about an hour's drive north of the city, winter is alive and well.

Ski resorts across the region will be open this weekend, and the powder is plentiful.

Shannon Smith, Director of Marketing for Hockley Ski Resort in Orangeville says the conditions are great.

"While we have been making snow, there's plenty on the ground," she says.

"We're not up to full speed yet, but there will be eight runs open this weekend."

Visit the Canadian Cities Index to stay on top of weather conditions across the country.

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