When Snow Starts in Calgary

by | Dec 26, 2023 | Calgary, Snow

When is the first snowfall of the year in Calgary, AB?

The first snowfall event in Calgary, AB usually occurs in early to mid October.

The first instance of snowfall in Calgary, at or over 1.0cm of snow, in the past 10 years, has varied as follows:

This data is sourced from Government of Canada historical weather and climate data for the Calgary area.

Later in October in Calgary, snow begins to fall more regularly.

The earliest it ever snowed in Calgary AB was August 16th, 1946, our city experienced 1.0cm of snow!

When does it start snowing in Calgary?

( When does it start snowing regularly in Calgary? )

The snowiest months for Calgary over the past 5 years have been February, December, and November, in order of snowiest to least snowy.

Expect it to start snowing regularly in November in Calgary, with heaviest snow fall in February and December.

Over the past five years, in Calgary:

  • February averaged 12 days and 33cm of snow.
  • December averaged 10 days and 27cm of snow.
  • November average 8 days and 25cm snow.

January and March are also notably snowy months for the Calgary area.

These figures are calculated using data from the Government of Canada’s historical weather and climate data.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much snow does Calgary get?

Winters in Calgary can be harsh.

On average for the Calgary area snowfall has been approximately 162cm.

This is averaging September through April, over the past 5 years.

What was the snowiest day in Calgary’s history?

“Snowmaggedon” was one of Canada’s largest weather events, taking place on St. Patrick’s Day near 25 years ago, March 17th, 1998

The airport recorded up to 39cm of snow and other areas of the city up to 45cm of snow!

To get around, people resorted to snowmobiles, snowshoes, and cross-country skiing!

You just never know what you’re going to get with Calgary’s weather!

Image source:

It wasn’t all fun and games though. Bus routes shut down, and there were 300+ motor vehicle accidents.

Dozens of flights were cancelled at the Calgary Airport.

Hundreds of vehicles were stranded on the Trans-Canada highway between Calgary and Lake Louise.

What is Calgary’s snow like?

Typically Calgary’s snow is light and fluffy.

This makes it easy to shovel.

There are many days throughout the winter months where Calgary will receive trace amounts of snow.

Calgary also is subject to the infamous Chinooks which can warm temperatures in any of the winter months above 10 degrees celsisus!

Heavy wet snow is uncommon in Calgary.

Which makes Calgary snow removal a little easier to deal with than Canada’s eastern provinces.

Down east, snow is heavier and wetter, making snow plowing, snow blowing, and shoveling, a little more difficult.

How does Calgary deal with snow?

The City of Calgary employs snow removal crews to clear snow from roadways, pathways, and other heavy traffic areas.

Road salts and gravel are used to improve traction.

The City of Calgary does not always clear residential streets, sidewalks, back lanes, alley ways, or engineered walkways.

Wherever possible property owners and home owners should be clearing their own snow local to their property.

Are there fines for not removing snow in Calgary?

Yes there are fines for not clearing snow.

Click to learn more about City of Calgary snow removal fines.

Can I get help with my snow removal?

There are many snow removal companies in Calgary.

One of which is Calgary Snow Removal Services(CSRS) which works with the area’s best snow removal contractors to source quality quotes and contracts to busy home owners and property managers.

Did you find this post helpful?

If you did, please consider sharing it so others can learn more about Calgary’s typical winter snowfall!

Thanks for reading.


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