It is winter time, and the concern in everyone’s mind is “how are the roads?”. Because of the varying weather/snow belts between Wawa and Sault Ste. Marie – travelers have always expressed concern in the weather reports and road condition reports. The weather can be bright and sunny in Wawa, but at Old Woman Bay, you can’t see 15 feet in front of your car.
The first place to look for information is the Road Conditons on the Ontario511 site. Below is a table generated from this morning’s report. Added is the length of highway for each section.
|Northeastern Ontario Road Conditions|
|Highways||Area||Road Condition||Last Observed At|
|Northeastern (file generated at 6:42 AM)|
|101||Highway 144 to Shawmere River||snow covered||16-12-13 5:55|
|101||Shawmere River to Highway 651||snow covered with snow packed sections.||16-12-13 5:15|
|101||Highway 651 to Wawa||snow covered with snow packed sections.||16-12-13 5:15||60 km|
|129||Thessalon to Aubrey Falls||snow covered with snow packed sections. Poor visibility.||16-12-13 5:15||96 km|
|129||Aubrey Falls to Chapleau||snow covered with snow packed sections.||16-12-13 5:15||130 km|
|17||Sault Saint Marie North Limits to Montreal River Bridge||snow covered with snow packed sections. Poor visibility.||16-12-13 5:15||118 km|
|17||Montreal River Bridge to Wawa||snow covered with snow packed sections.||16-12-13 5:15||108 km|
|17||Wawa to Paint Lake Rd||snow covered with snow packed sections.||16-12-13 5:15||51 km|
|17||Paint Lake Rd to Southwest of White River||snow covered with snow packed sections.||16-12-13 5:15|
|519||Highway 17 – Dambrossio Township to Green Lake Road – Dunphy Township||snow covered with snow packed sections.||16-12-13 5:15||30 km|
|547||Highway 101 to Hawk Junction||snow covered with snow packed sections.||16-12-13 5:15||5 km|
|631||White River to Highway 11||snow covered with snow packed sections.||16-12-13 5:15||167 km|
|651||Highway 101 to Missinabi||snow covered with snow packed sections.||16-12-13 5:15||24 km|
For many years, travelers have relied on the webcams at Montreal River to give them an idea of weather and the snow squalls that come off of Lake Superior. This service has been provided free to visitors by a cottage owner at Montreal River Harbour, and is supported by donations from patrons of the site.
This year, the MTO has added ‘weather cameras’ to help travellers understand road and weather conditions. You can find them here.
There are a number that may be of interest to readers in this area. From White River to Sault Ste. Marie, there are five cameras. All screenshots were taken between 6:44 & 6:46 a.m. Tuesday, December 13th, 2016.
These new cameras may come in handy over the winter season, and offer more information to the traveler to make their decisions on winter travel during winter storms and squalls.
CAUTION: The weather cams show their time in UTC. UTC is five hours ahead of EST. This can be very confusing to people who just look at the time… The webcam shot, screen grabbed at 10:15, shows a UTC time of 14:46:11 means that it was actually 9:46 a.m. Perhaps the MTO should be correcting that so it will be consumer friendly.