03/14/2013 09:22 EDT | Updated 03/21/2013 04:35 EDT

Canada Spring Forecast 2013: Wet And Cool In The West, Stormy In The East

Hand it to Nova Scotia’s Shubenacadie Sam, the lesser known cousin of weather prognosticating groundhogs Punxsutawney Phil and Wiarton Willie: His late spring forecast for Canada appears to be spot on, while the other two marmots missed the mark.

We’re halfway through March and less than a week away from the first day of spring on March 20, yet much of the country awoke to temperatures below 0C, from -16C in Edmonton to -20C in Thunder Bay. Last year around this time, many parts of Canada saw temperatures hit daytime highs in the double digits.

The spring weather forecast for Canada, released this week, suggests the country is in for a mixed bag of stuff: temperatures will be near-to-above average in eastern, northern and Atlantic Canada, while it will be cooler-than-normal in parts of central and western Canada.

The eastern Prairies and much of Ontario will see stormy weather, with lots of rain and late-season snowfall. Southern Ontario can expect more strong and severe thunderstorms between May and June, the weather site predicts. Newfoundland is forecast to get a higher-than-normal amount of Atlantic storms. says Alberta will be dry this spring, while the West coast goes back to the wet stuff, with much of coastal B.C. experiencing cooler temperatures right into the summer due to the “Pacific Decadal Oscillation” — an El Nino-like pattern of sea-surface temperatures.

The warmest spring in Canada occurred in 2010. The spring of 2012 was the ninth warmest on record (records date back to 1948).

Amazing March Weather Photos