A bitter cold is gripping parts of central and eastern Canada today as temperatures dip to -45 C with the wind chill in some areas.

Environment Canada has issued extreme cold warnings for provinces from Manitoba to New Brunswick.

The national weather forecaster says temperatures could fall to -45 C in Ottawa today with the wind chill, warming up to -35 C overnight.

In New Brunswick, temperatures are expected to hover between -35 C and -40 C with the wind chill until Sunday.

Quebec and Manitoba can expect much of the same, with temperatures warming up early next week.

Meanwhile, Newfoundland is bracing for a winter storm that could bring up to 20 centimetres of snow to eastern parts of the island today.