Great Lakes ice

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The local metro Detroit news was reporting on that the other day. I attribute it to my neighbor buying a condo in Florida, and wintering there the last two years, both of which have been phenomenally mild. I wore my “snow sneakers” once last year. Have not taken them out of the closet yet this year, and the weather forecast is for at least two more weeks of “above average” temperatures. When my neighbor gets back, in two or three months, I will suggest he should have started wintering in Florida a long time ago.

Steve

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2 very weak winters in a row in Michigan. It ( winter ) is back in force over the last couple of days, just got back from a snowshoe hike near the lakeshore and it was like being in the arctic with the wind chill. But this is only going to last a few days, highs in the 40s next week. For winter lovers, this is a pathetic stretch, and it sure feels like a developing trend that isn’t ending. I read a report that we should expect next winter to be even warmer.

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Similar weather here at Sleeping Bear Dunes in Michigan. Things actually felt “normal” this weekend for two whole days, but one look at Lake Michigan tells you all you need to know. Zero ice.

Andy

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Two years makes for a very weak trend. And last year certainly had plenty of snow in Traverse City.

Year   Total inches
23-24                 
22-23     114.5 
21-22     103.5  
20-21      64.1   
19-20     106.8 
18-19     156.5 
Average, 1991-2020   101.0

So, if this year comes in below average then in six years there will have been two below average and four above.

DB2

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I see your numbers, but last winter was weak. If I’m remembering right, the snowfall was below average until a burst of late March and early April snow hit. I guarantee that nobody here thought last year was even an average winter. Talk to people that run ski systems, and they agree with me. So your stats might be right, but you know what they say about stats, lol.

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Andy, I did the SB lantern-path snowshoe hike last night, were you out there ?

Didn’t need snowshoes, but was that wind ever howling !
The drive over was white knuckle, but by the time we had a beverage afterwards, the drive back was totally sedate.

All in all, it was a pretty cool event ( no pun intended, lol )

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I think the difference is that it has been so warm that, when snow does fall, it melts in a few days. Used to be that it would start snowing in late November, and we would not seen the ground until late January, when there was almost always a warm spell. Then it would start snowing again, and there would be snow on the ground until early April.

the local news reported that, in metro Detroit, January had a record amount of precipitation. The difference was it was mostly rain, rather than snow.

What worries me about this trend is it makes ice storms more likely. I would rather have snow, than ice. We had a heck of an ice storm last winter.

Steve

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Same here, rain in January and February is not a welcome sight. Ice storms are much worse than snow storms.

I usually do 4 xc ski races a winter. Last year, the 1st early season race was cancelled ( mid-December. it’s kind of cute that they keep scheduling it, lol ). I think it’s been 5 years since it has not been cancelled. The other races were held, but all modified to a shortened distance ( basically do loops on maybe a 3 or 4 mile loop that just barely had enough snow to safely have large number of skiers on ). This Winter, ALL of the races I like to do were cancelled due to lack of snow. There were a couple of modified-shortened races held that I did not do. Suks to be me,lol, need a new hobby.

All that said, I’m out the door to go xc skiing. This will be the 3rd week of winter that I’ve been able to ski close to home (2 weeks in January, and this week ). I was trail running on this ski trail in late December, which is depressing, lol. So by my count, we’ll have had 3 full weeks of winter this season. Not good.

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Hi, Joe.

Was wondering if maybe you were in my neck of the woods!

We did that snowshoe hike last year, but skipped last night’s. It is really cool that the Park Service puts that on. We locals need all the winter entertainment we can get! (Especially when we haven’t had enough snow for good skiing the past couple of years … )

Best,

Andy

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I know this isn’t the Great Lakes, but pretty close. This is a place in VT I’ve been going for about 20+ years in the Fall for a great long weekend golf event. Apparently, winter is also a very busy time of the year for this resort and they have been hurt very badly by the warmer conditions especially this year.

'A thing of the past’: With warmer winters, the New England tradition of outdoor skating is on thin ice

It’s February in Vermont. But it doesn’t feel like it on Lake Morey.

“It’s comical to have six inches [of ice] this time of year,” said Mark Avery, 53, the third-generation co-owner of the Lake Morey Resort, about halfway between the Massachusetts border and Canada. There ought to be more than a foot of ice by now, he said.

On Lake Morey, for the 130-room resort, ice skating is not just a good side hustle — it is a major driver of revenue to sustain the business through the winter. Typically, about 80 percent of rooms are booked during February weekends. On this particularly sunny Saturday, though, occupancy was about 35 percent, Avery said.

I’m hoping that this place doesn’t go out of business! It’s a great slice of heaven in the Green Mountains of VT.

'38Packard

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I see what you did there.

Snow isn’t covering the ice on the lakes because there isn’t any ice on the lakes. It lakes long periods of deep cold to freeze the Great Lakes. Some of the greatest snowfalls of the Great Lakes snow belt are when the lakes are open. My wife got to experience that on a business trip to Syracuse years ago.

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That’s certainly the case on this side of the Atlantic. Snow has fallen, but record-high temperatures for extended periods mean it is melting fast except at high altitudes. Ski worldcup broadcasts show white bands in the middle of largely brown landscapes…

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Down here in Florida it has been a rainy winter.

It’s Florida’s Cloudiest Winter In More Than 80 Years
https://weather.com/news/climate/news/2024-02-07-florida-cloudiest-winter-el-nino

And in California?

Already soggy California braces for next round of rain
https://www.cnn.com/2024/02/18/weather/california-storm-rain-flooding-sunday/index.html

DB2

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Soggy California needs to build some basic infrastructure, such as housing and dams.

Lake Hodges, in San Diego, must be kept only 30 percent full at all times, due to safety concerns surrounding its dam. The dam is over a century old, and officials fear it may not be able to hold such a high amount of water.

DB2

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The last 3-4 winters here in south Florida have been unusual. At least for the 3 decades before that, winters rarely had any rain. It was a really good bet to plan any outdoor activity you wanted to and the probability of rain was so low that it simply wasn’t even considered. Not so for the last 3-4 years. We’ve had regular rains throughout the winter. Yesterday, we even had a deluge that flooded swales all over the place, and flooded swales was only a summer thing until recently. The rains have really affected high school sports practices this year, more practices have been cancelled due to weather than ever before.

We’ll see what occurs in the next several years, but you make it sound like there might be a little climate change happening…

Pete

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Climate change, heck climate, isn’t measured in units of “years”. Only weather is measured in units of years. Climate change is measured over decades, centuries, millennia, etc.

The danger of using just a few years to “illustrate” climate change is that weather is so variable that if suddenly 5 dry years appear, you’ll get people saying “see, no climate change!” This literally is happening in CA as we speak, the never ending drought ended and now many people are denying that drought conditions are still a huge danger.

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