The first thing you need to remember when you visit Newfoundland is, ignore the forecast. Just make your plans and carry through with them regardless of what the weather man says.
“… ignore the forecast…”
Newfoundland is often described as the nose of North America, jutting so far into the mid-Atlantic you might rightly suggest that it’s “stuck in the wrong place”. To the North of Newfoundland runs one of the world’s most extreme arctic waters – the ‘Labrador Current’. To our south flows it’s near polar opposite, the tropical waters of the ‘Gulf Stream’. Needless to say, the temperatures of the air masses associated with these ocean bodies are vastly different, and depending on wind directions, can dramatically affect our immediate climate here on the island. Thus, weather forecasting is a difficult science whose predictions and conditions can change, and quickly.
“… dramatically affect our climate…”
Certainly, we Newfoundlander’s are more than accustomed to the schizophrenic weather patterns, and have created our own defense system to make the most of every situation. Many of the locals will suggest; “there is no such thing as bad weather, just poor clothing choices.” My Father would take this a step further and often states; “There’s no such thing as bad weather in Newfoundland – just different types of good weather.” Basically; you must be willing to alter your schedule, you must carry multiple changes of appropriate clothing, and you should be equally prepared to enjoy your time indoors as much as you would the wilds.
“… just different types of good weather…”
Of course, we Newfoundlanders are often the guiltiest when it comes to paying heed to our own advice, and so my wife and I almost cancelled our trip to Bonavista this past weekend due to the inclement forecast. Fortunately, it was my father in laws birthday, so the obligatory visit encouraged us to press on. We packed clothing for every occasion, booked tickets to the St. Patrick’s day show, called ahead with our plans, and set off.
Well, what a weekend we had. Yes, we were stuck in a monstrous snowstorm for a couple of days, and yes, I had to shovel several driveways for elderly neighbours (great bit of exercise). But we also saw some of the most glorious sunny days imaginable, and witnessed the spectacular winter sunsets for which Newfoundland is so famous.
We went ice skating and sliding. Took a drive or two out to the ‘Cape’, walked frequently, shared a few drinks, visited friends, baked cookies and buns, swapped yarns, read a lot, wrote even more, and spent an awful lot of time laughing and smiling with family & friends.
“… walked frequently…”
Perhaps I might now introduce my own adage about Newfoundland weather;
“There’s no such thing as bad weather when you’re surrounded by so much warmth!”