Environment Canada issues special weather statement for mountain passes

Snowfall in mountain passes

UPDATE 10:52 a.m.

Heavy rainfall continues to fall as snow at higher elevations.

One Castanet reader travelling on Highway 33 south of Idabel Lake says the highway is, "very slippery with wet freezing snow covering the road. Extremely sketchy!"

A quick look at the highway camera near McCulloch 41 kilometres southeast of Kelowna, just south of Big White turnoff, looking north shows snow building up on the highway as of 10:44 a.m. Thursday.

Environment Canada issued a special weather statement as of 7:42 a.m. Thursday for:

  • Coquihalla Highway - Hope to Merritt
  • Highway 3 - Hope to Princeton via Allison Pass
  • Okanagan Connector - Merritt to Kelowna
  • Trans-Canada Highway - Eagle Pass to Rogers Pass

ORIGINAL 7:46 a.m.

Environment Canada has issued another special weather statement for most of the high mountain passes in southern B.C., including the Okanagan Connector and Coquihalla Highway.

The special weather statement also calls for heavy snow with accumulations of 10 to 15 cm for the Rogers Pass, Paulson Summit, Kootenay Pass and Pennask Summit.

Conditions are expected to shift to rain later this afternoon.

Environment Canada says a frontal system pushing across B.C. will spread snow to the summit of the southern interior highways this morning.

Rising freezing levels will result in snow changing to rain over the Paulson Summit, Kootenay Pass and Pennask Summit near midday today. Intense rain over the Kootenay Pass will continue through Friday morning with amounts up to 40 mm expected.

The freezing levels at the Rogers Pass will rise just above the summit level this afternoon then lower to around 1,200 metres tonight. While the change over to rain is still expected later today, precipitation will quickly switch back to snow this evening. A further 10 cm of snow is possible near the summit tonight.

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