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Balmy, barefoot conditions for southern B.C.

VANCOUVER - A public weather alert is in effect across Vancouver Island and B.C.'s south coast but residents aren't grabbing snow shovels — instead they could be running barefoot through the grass.

Environment Canada says a weekend of balmy weather is ahead, with temperatures across the entire region as much as five degrees above normal.

That could push the mercury to nearly 20 degrees in some inland communities, which is warm even for Canada's cosiest climate.

But the almost gleeful special weather statement from Environment Canada may get a chilly reception in other parts of the province and the country.

An early-morning storm across northeastern B.C. brought blowing snow and vile driving conditions to the north Peace region.

Snowfall warnings are also in effect across parts of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba while torrential rain is forecast for later this weekend in southern Quebec, and a blizzard warning is posted for Nunavut.

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