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Snow falls in BC's lower mainland

First snow falls in Surrey, BC
First snow falls in Surrey, BC

Lyndsay Morrison, staff writer

November 19, 2010 — Flurries have been falling in and around Vancouver, Burnaby and Surrey. More snow is forecast in the Interior.

Snow expected through Saturday
Snow expected through Saturday

It's beginning to look a little more like winter in parts of British Columbia.

Wet snow and flurries have been reported in parts of the lower mainland, including Burnaby and Surrey. It may not be enough for residents to get their shovels out of storage, but it certainly has caused a scene in some places.

Environment Canada issued a snowfall warning for Metro Vancouver and Greater Victoria on Friday. Five to 10 cm of snow is expected through Saturday morning. Locally higher amounts are possible along east Vancouver Island where outflow winds will pick up moisture over the straight of Georgia.

“It's all thanks to the arctic high that's pushing cold air to the coast of BC,” says Gerald Cheng, a meteorologist at The Weather Network. “We also have a low pressure system from the west that's clashing with high and creating flurries.”

Still, snow isn't the only thing that has people on the coast of BC talking. Temperatures are set to plunge, as well. An arctic ridge of high pressure will settle into the area beginning Sunday. As a result, temperatures will be 7 to 8 degrees below normal, and into the minus single digits in some cases. That cold airmass will stick around until the middle of next week.

A winter wonderland in Bridge Lake, BC
A winter wonderland in Bridge Lake, BC

In the Interior, additional snowfall amounts of 10 to 15 cm are forecast throughout the day Friday. It could make for some slick conditions and poor visibility along the Coquihalla Highway and Okanagan Connector.

The early blast of winter in parts of British Columbia has been great news for skiers and snowboarders. Several popular resorts are set to open to the public this weekend, including Whistler, Sun Peaks and Cypress Mountain.

The ski hills at Vancouver's Grouse Mountain haven't opened to the public yet, but the skate pond has. William Mbaho says skaters can come to the pond every day of the week.

“People can come here and rent their skates or bring a pair of skates,” says Mbaho. “It's also a great precursor to winter here at Grouse Mountain. We know the ski season is not far behind!”

For more on current conditions on the slopes in your area, be sure to check out our ski report.

With files from Andrea Stockton

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