PEI First Timers usually have questions about the weather. We have maritime weather which means we seldom have temperature extremes. If you know the geography of the East coast of North America and you know about the gulf stream, you will see that warm water from the South comes up to Nova Scotia before turning into the deep Atlantic. This helps bring warmer weather into the area. PEI is nestled by New Brunswick and Nova Scotia which helps protect it from other harsh weather.
Consult this chart on the Government website. The average summer night time temperature is 14 degrees. This means nights are almost always cool which makes it good for sleeping. It also means that if you walk along the beach at night, you may need a sweater or windbreaker. Daytime temperatures are usually in the mid 20’s. This means you will not too often be hunting for shade or air conditioning. As a matter of fact, most rural accommodations do not have AC because it is not needed. Although we do get the occasional 30+ temperatures, the wind helps keep the temperature comfortable.
Fall temperatures are very nice. PEI is a popular destination for people who love to experience nature without the hustle and bustle. They can enjoy off-season rates while the weather is still warm. There are also many special events int he fall such as fall flavours.
Spring in PEI is unpredictable. You can come to PEI in June and still see ice floes on the North Shore. This year, all the snow and ice was gone well before Easter. I gathered these pictures from Greenvale Acres. Taken a year apart in the beginning of June, notice the difference in vegetation growth.
Yes it gets windy in Prince Edward Island. We have several wind farms here because of it. Average wind speeds (not sure exactly what that means) are in excess of 16KPH almost everywhere on PEI. And yes it gets windier. It is not unusual to get winds at 30KPH and gusts to 40 or 50. When the wind gusts exceed 70KPH the Confederation Bridge is closed to high sided vehicles. At higher speeds the authorities close the bridge completely. Taking winds into consideration and the cool evenings, again, remember to have appropriate outer wear.
The maritime weather patterns tend to isolate PEI from the cold harshness found in the Northern states, Southern Ontario and Quebec. Many winters feature light snow cover but we do get the occasional zingers. In 2004, White Juan closed the Island down for a day or two. it was several days before roads were re-opened across the province.
Hurricane Juan of 2003 is perhaps the most memorable recent event. PEI usually gets 1-2 Hurricane warnings per year. Most hurricanes lose their intensity as they approach the Eastern Seaboard. Those that make it further North are often downgraded as they make land in Nova Scotia – They bear the brunt of most major storms that make it this far North. So if you visit PEI in September or October, you should keep an ear out for weather forecasts.
Tomorrow, X marks the spot.