REGINA - Environment Canada's senior climatologist says he's surprised how long winter is lasting on the Prairies and warns the cold temperatures could persist through the end of April.

David Phillips blames a polar vortex for the current spring cold snap.

Temperatures in the region are still in the negative double digits today, with lows reaching -27 C with the wind chill in parts of Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

In southern Alberta, a snowfall warning is calling for up to 20 centimetres of the white stuff.

Phillips says it's difficult to see such conditions last longer than a day or two at this time of year.

The Weather Network's forecast centre manager says the conditions will delay the spring runoff.