Lake Effect Snow Showers

December 9th, 2013 at 2:10 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

Local    Monday PM – I’ll leave radar at the top of the blog with more snow showers/ flurries likely.  Check the next thread for more, including updated model data.  First, interesting note…they’re raising money to help out the guy who’s car got overturned at Michigan State in the post-game celebration last night.    We received 1-4″ of yesterday PM and overnight.  A few spots have also picked up a touch of freezing drizzle.   Roads have slick spots and the wind is strong so there is drifting snow.    There was a Freezing Rain (drizzle) Advisory up overnight for Northern Indiana.  It’s well below freezing, so the snow is sticking.  The average high for G.R. is 37 today and Sunday we only made 23.   It was 8 degrees warmer in Fairbanks, Alaska Sunday than it was in G.R.

Check out the webcam at Krupp’s Resort, where they are pushing toward 2 feet of snow on the ground.  Check out the cold temps. on the U.S. Low Temperature map. This was as of 7 am EST, so many of these weather stations (esp. in the West) would have dropped another couple of degrees before sunrise. There’s a definite chance of at least flurries in Fresno CA. The last snowflake they saw was on 12/15/08 and the last measurable snow was 12/20/1998. It was easy to tell where the cold front is on the temperature anomaly map. Here’s the morning run of the NAM forecast snow amounts.

Here’s a live look at the Houghton Bridge.  Keep checking back to this thread for these links: Grand Rapids radar, Northern Indiana radar, Chicago radar, Detroit radar and Milwaukee radar. Here’s the College of DuPage Radar Map (pick any radar in the U.S.), College of DuPage Grand Rapids radar, the West Michigan Lightning Tracker, National Lightning Tracker, the local warning/advisory map and the National warning/watch/advisory map, and a surface weather map. You can checkout the latest Grand Rapids NWS discussion, the Northern Indiana NWS discussion (includes the Michigan Counties that border Indiana), the discussion for Northern Lower Michigan, and Eastern Lower Michigan. Check out Storm Total Rainfall (until they reset it). Here’s the Spyglass Condos Weather Station the S. Haven GLERL station, the Muskegon GLERL station, the Grand Haven Steelheaders webcam and weather station, and the weather station at Holland State Park. Check out the Maranatha Webcam at Lake Michigan and links to webcams. Here’s the infrared satellite loop (night) and the visible satellite loop (daytime), Lake Michigan water temperatures (summer). Here’s storm reports from SW Michigan, Northern Michigan, NE Illinois, SE. Wisconsin, Upper Michigan and E. Michigan. Check out the wind and wave height at the South Mid-Lake Michigan Buoy, the North Mid-Lake Michigan Buoy, the buoy at Big Sable Point near Ludington, the weather station at Manistee Harbor and the weather station on the beach at St. Joseph. Here’s Michigan wind gusts from MesoWest, data from the MAWN agriculutural weather stations and Weather Underground (data at the bottom from private weather stations.

We’ll have to watch for ice jams on Michigan rivers as the cold air settles in next week. Here’s some river water temps. Also, many inland lakes will be icing up in the next 10 days. Beware of early thin ice.

210 Responses to “Lake Effect Snow Showers”

  1. Travis Ulberg (West of Martin, Allegan County) says:

    The heavier snow certainly is far from the lake for the current wind speeds. Very rarely does the snow jump over me, not even in blizzard type winds. We’ve received a few tenths of lake effect so far. 4″ snow depth.

  2. Intellicast says absolutely no snow tuesday night with just mostly cloudy skies. Hope that dont happen!

  3. INDYY says:

    GETTING BLIZZARD CONDITIONS OUT THEE YARDopfBRICKS BIG SNOW FLAKES!!! OVER 5 INCHES NOW ON THEE GROUND MY WINTER SNOWFALL AS OF 230PM DECEMBER 9TH OVER 9 INCHES SINCE NOVI!! STAY TUNED INDYY…………

  4. Jesse (south of Zeeland) says:

    Not a flake falling yet. Current wind speeds are pushing the snow past me into eastern Ottawa, kent and barry counties.

  5. Matt (Spring Lake) says:

    It is barely that windy here and we are only getting flurries at work in Norton Shores. I find the west winds irritating for lake effect snow.

    1. John says:

      Especially as strong as they get!!!

    2. Travis Ulberg (West of Martin, Allegan County) says:

      I can’t believe how far off of the lake, and inland the heavier snow is. I don’t know about anywhere else, but it isn’t THAT windy at my house.

      1. Jesse (south of Zeeland) says:

        It’s very windy in my neck of the woods. I would say gusting to 25+ mph right now.

  6. John says:

    Here is a good summary of the next couple days thru Wednesday from the NWS, they have lowered snow amounts and are now only expecting two inches inland and up to 5 inches in the lakeshore counties!

    http://www.crh.noaa.gov/images/grr/webinars/20131209_Snow_Tuesday_and_Wednesday.pdf

    1. Matt (Spring Lake) says:

      Actually John, it is for two time periods. There is a map for Tuesday, which shows five inches at the lakeshore, and then a map for Wednesday, showing 5 inches…so in total, 10 inches along the lakeshore.

      Our click and point has about a foot over the next couple days!

      1. Yes things could get interesting here tomorrow afternoon and overnight

      2. John says:

        Oh yes I just saw that lol! That’s just tomorrow’s snowfall! Looks to be a very similar event to last nights! Then another 3-6″ on Wednesday for lakeshore counties plus inland counties from GR to the south!

  7. Sprites(Holland) says:

    NWS updated forecast, still showing 8″ through wednesday night. Looks like another cold blast during the weekend with a chance of snow every day through next Monday! wow!

  8. WickedTwister says:

    If you look close it’s 2-5 for each day so totals of 4-10in for 2 days

  9. Ryan (Rockford) says:

    We’ve already gotten more snow both today (daytime hours), overnight last night, and even yesterday afternoon (it started a few hours earlier than the forecasts predicted). Not a substantial amount of snow, but everything is covered and it has been coming down in varying intensities constantly since around or just before this time yesterday. Like I said earlier, we won’t be seeing the grass any time soon.

  10. INDYY says:

    West Michigan will have over 12 inches of snow on the ground when the week’nd rolls in!!! We are going to get snow everyday now!!!! INDYY

  11. Scott says:

    County Zone List for your reference:

    http://www.nws.noaa.gov/mirs/public/prods/maps/state_zone_michigan.htm

    New discussion is out. Winter Weather Advisories for these zones:

    MI…WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY FROM 9 AM TO 7 PM EST TUESDAY FOR
    MIZ037-038-043-044-050-056-057-064-071.

  12. John says:

    The NWS point forecast now gives me up to 9″ from tomorrow to Thursday evening! :)

  13. John says:

    New winter weather advisory for tomorrow from 9am to 7pm! :)

  14. Sprites(Holland) says:

    Afternoon forecast discussion is a snow/cold lovers dream:

    .SYNOPSIS…
    ISSUED AT 328 PM EST MON DEC 9 2013

    A COLD AND SNOWY REMAINDER OF THE WEEK IS EXPECTED AS BOUTS OF LAKE
    EFFECT AND LAKE ENHANCED SNOW AFFECT THE AREA. WEAK SYSTEMS MOVING
    THROUGH THE GREAT LAKES REGION WILL ENHANCE ALREADY ONGOING LAKE
    EFFECT SNOW. THE LAKE EFFECT WILL BE UNINTERRUPTED FROM THE CURRENT
    TIME THROUGH THURSDAY WITH PERIODS WHERE IT WILL GET A BOOST. THE
    FIRST SUCH TIME FRAME WILL BE ON TUESDAY AND THEN AGAIN LATE TUESDAY
    NIGHT INTO WEDNESDAY MORNING. SOME LOCATIONS DOWNWIND OF LAKE
    MICHIGAN THROUGH THURSDAY WILL SEE SNOWFALL AMOUNTS ON THE ORDER OF
    6 TO 12 INCHES. TEMPERATURES THIS WEEK WILL NOT REACH THE FREEZING
    MARK.

    &&

    .SHORT TERM…(THIS EVENING THROUGH WEDNESDAY NIGHT)
    ISSUED AT 328 PM EST MON DEC 9 2013

    HAVE OPTED TO ISSUE A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY FOR THE LAKESHORE
    COUNTIES AS WELL AS KENT…NEWAYGO AND LAKE FOR TUESDAY. SO…MUCH
    OF THE WESTERN TWO TIERS OF COUNTIES FROM JUST AFTER THE MORNING
    RUSH 14Z…THROUGH THE EVENING RUSH AT 00Z. THIS HAS BEEN ISSUED FOR
    WHAT SHOULD BE A DISTINCT BURST IN THE LAKE EFFECT SNOW…ENHANCED
    BY A SHORTWAVE ALOFT AND A SURFACE TROUGH SHIFTING THROUGH. WINDS
    WILL BE SHIFTING FROM SOUTHWEST TO WEST-NORTHWEST THROUGH THE COURSE
    OF THE DAY ON TUESDAY. SO AREAS LIKE MUSKEGON…OTTAWA…PORTIONS OF
    NEWAYGO AND NORTHERN KENT MAY SEE THE HIGHEST SNOWFALL TOTALS. AT
    THIS POINT THINKING A QUICK 3-5 INCHES OVER MUCH OF THE NORTHWEST
    AND WEST CENTRAL CWA. IN THESE TYPE OF EVENTS THE LAKE
    EFFECT/ENHANCED SNOW IS USUALLY SOLID. SNOWFALL AMOUNTS ARE TRICKY
    GIVEN THE BURST WILL BE SHORTLIVED AS THE WAVE WILL BE PLOWING EAST.
    EVEN WITH THE RAPID MOVEMENT OF THE WAVE EXPECTING DECENT SNOW GIVEN
    THE DEPTH OF THE DGZ AND THE OMEGA LOCATED WITHIN IT. EXPECTING NEAR
    WHITEOUT CONDITIONS AT TIMES. THE WHITEOUT CONDITIONS WILL OCCUR
    JUST DUE TO FLAKE SIZE/SNOW RATE ITSELF BUT WILL BE COMPOUNDED BY
    WINDS THAT WILL RAMP UP AFTER MID MORNING. WINDS OF 15 TO 30 MPH
    LOOK COMMON WHICH WILL MAKE WHITEOUTS EVEN MORE LIKELY. BOTTOM
    LINE…SHORT BURST OF HEAVY SNOW DROPPING 3-5 INCHES IN THE ADVISORY
    COUNTIES COMBINED WITH AREAS OF BLOWING SNOW. WE WILL TAKE ANOTHER
    LOOK TONIGHT TO SEE IF WE NEED TO EXPAND INLAND AT ALL GIVEN THE
    STRONG WIND SPEEDS. COULD SEE NEEDING TO GO EAST INTO THE NEXT ROW
    SOME…BUT THE LESSER SNOWFALL TOTALS THERE MAY MAKE THE ADVISORY
    LESS NEEDED.

    ANOTHER TIME FRAME OF CONCERN WILL BE LATE TUESDAY NIGHT INTO
    WEDNESDAY WHEN ANOTHER UPPER SHORTWAVE MOVES THROUGH THE AREA. THIS
    HAS THE MAKINGS OF AN I-94 CONVERGENCE BAND. HAVE INCREASED POPS AND
    SNOWFALL AMOUNTS IN THE SOUTHWEST CORNER OF THE CWA FROM SOUTH HAVEN
    TOWARDS AZO. A WEAK LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM WILL BE CRITICAL IN BOOSTING
    MOISTURE AND LIFT SO WE HAVE A LITTLE BIT OF TIME TO ZERO IN ON THIS
    ONE. ITS A VERY WEAK SYSTEM THAT WILL BE A KEY PLAYER. THIS EVENT
    WILL BE ANOTHER ONE THAT IS A QUICK HITTER WITH LOCALLY HEAVY SNOW
    LIKELY. MODELS DO NOT HANDLE PCPN/SNOW AMOUNTS WELL IN REGARD TO
    LAKE EFFECT SNOW…BUT THINKING THIS COULD BE ANOTHER QUICK 3-6 INCH
    BURST.

    OTHERWISE…LAKE EFFECT SNOW WILL CONTINUE THROUGHOUT THE ENTIRE
    SHORT TERM. ONGOING LAKE EFFECT SNOW IS A CONCERN. THE HIGHEST
    REFLECTIVITIES ARE LOCATED ALONG HIGHWAY 131 WHICH IS TYPICAL IN
    HIGHER WIND EVENTS WERE IT TAKES SOME DISTANCE FOR THE FRICTIONAL
    PILING UP OF THE WIND TO OCCUR TO SET UP A ZONE OF CONVERGENCE.
    GIVEN THAT THE DGZ DEPTH/MOISTURE DEPTH CONTINUE TO SHRINK AND THE
    LIFT WEAKENS WILL NOT BE ISSUING ANY HEADLINE FOR THIS EVENING.
    AMOUNTS SHOULD BE LIMITED. WE WILL HANDLE THIS EVENING WITH SOCIAL
    MEDIA POSTS ALERTING FOLKS THAT THE EVENING RUSH WILL HAVE SOME
    SLIPPERY SPOTS AND SLOWER TRAVEL. HAVE KEYED ON THE MUCH HIGHER
    IMPACT TIME FRAME…TOMORROW.

    .LONG TERM…(THURSDAY THROUGH MONDAY)
    ISSUED AT 328 PM EST MON DEC 9 2013

    OVERALL CONFIDENCE IS HIGH THAT THE CURRENT PATTERN WILL CONTINUE
    INTO NEXT WEEK. THERE ARE OF COURSE SOME MODEL DIFFERENCES WITH THE
    DETAILS OF INDIVIDUAL SYSTEMS BUT TO QUOTE WPC…”THE LARGE-SCALE
    FLOW IS FAIRLY LOCKED IN PLACE ACROSS NORTH AMERICA”. NO SIGNIFICANT
    CHANGES WERE MADE TO THE INHERITED FORECAST.

    MOST MODEL GUIDANCE INDICATES A PARADE OF SIBERIAN HIGHS WILL CROSS
    THE NORTH POLE AND THEN MOVE SOUTH ACROSS WESTERN CANADA AND INTO
    THE GREAT LAKES. EASTERN U.S. UPPER TROUGHING AND EASTERN PACIFIC
    UPPER RIDGING SHOULD PERSIST THROUGH THURSDAY THE 19TH. SO ON A
    LARGER SCALE…PERIODS OF SNOW AND COLDER THAN NORMAL TEMPERATURES
    SHOULD CONTINUE WELL INTO NEXT WORK WEEK. MODEL GUIDANCE THAT WAS
    CONSIDERED INCLUDES 300 MB AND 250 MB NORTHERN HEMISPHERE HEIGHT
    FORECASTS FROM THE 15KM FIM_ZEUS…ECMWF…ECMWF ENSEMBLE…
    GFS…GFS ENSEMBLE…EXPERIMENTAL GFS ENSEMBLES…PLUS THE CANADIAN
    MODEL.

    THE MOST SIGNIFICANT SYSTEM WE WILL BE WATCHING IS POSSIBLE PHASING
    OF A NORTHERN STREAM SYSTEM CURRENTLY NEAR BAFFINS ISLAND WITH AN
    UPPER LOW OFF THE CALIFORNIA COAST DURING THIS COMING WEEKEND. THIS
    COULD BE A MAJOR SNOW STORM FOR SOUTHWEST MICHIGAN FOR
    SATURDAY INTO SUNDAY IF THE SYSTEM TRACKS FAR ENOUGH NORTH. THE
    09/12Z GFS HAS THE SYSTEM OVER SOUTHERN OHIO SATURDAY EVENING. THE
    TREND IS FOR A SLOWER AND STRONGER SYSTEM FROM THE LAST 3 RUNS OF
    THE GFS SO THIS WILL HAVE TO BE WATCHED CLOSELY.

    BEHIND THIS SYSTEM…ANOTHER ARCTIC HIGH MOVES IN AND BRINGS MORE
    LAKE EFFECT SNOW INTO EARLY NEXT WEEK.

    1. Jerrod (Hartford) says:

      System looked pretty good on the 09/12Z GFS in terms of the liquid precipitation, especially along and south of I-96. At least 1/2″ of water precipitation in those areas, so at least 5″ at 10:1 ratio. However, with this being several days away, no sampling on the network and the main system that far away, questions abound.

  15. John says:

    The latest NWS update is talking the potential of a major snowstorm over the weekend! :)

    1. SBPortage002 says:

      Looks great for a White Christmas…I love snow for Christmas, whether on the ground or through the air. :)

  16. John says:

    URGENT – WINTER WEATHER MESSAGE
    NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GRAND RAPIDS MI
    347 PM EST MON DEC 9 2013

    MIZ037-038-043-044-050-056-057-064-071-100500-
    /O.NEW.KGRR.WW.Y.0017.131210T1400Z-131211T0000Z/
    MASON-LAKE-OCEANA-NEWAYGO-MUSKEGON-OTTAWA-KENT-ALLEGAN-VAN BUREN-
    INCLUDING THE CITIES OF…LUDINGTON…BALDWIN…HART…FREMONT…
    MUSKEGON…JENISON…GRAND RAPIDS…HOLLAND…SOUTH HAVEN
    347 PM EST MON DEC 9 2013

    …WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM 9 AM TO 7 PM EST
    TUESDAY…

    THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN GRAND RAPIDS HAS ISSUED A WINTER
    WEATHER ADVISORY FOR SNOW AND BLOWING SNOW…WHICH IS IN EFFECT
    FROM 9 AM TO 7 PM EST TUESDAY.

    HAZARDOUS WEATHER…

    * A BURST OF LAKE ENHANCED SNOW IS EXPECTED TUESDAY WITH 3 TO 5
    INCHES OF NEW SNOW.

    * WINDS FROM THE WEST WILL INCREASE TO 15 TO 30 MPH WITH HIGHER
    GUSTS CREATING AREAS OF BLOWING SNOW.

    * VISIBILITIES WILL BE REDUCED TO A FEW CAR LENGTHS AT TIMES.

    IMPACTS…

    * SNOW COVERED AND SLIPPERY ROADS WILL DEVELOP WITH THE
    HEAVIEST SNOW FALLING AFTER THE MORNING RUSH.

    * NEAR ZERO VISIBILITIES WILL OCCUR AT TIMES DUE TO FALLING AND
    BLOWING SNOW.

    PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…

    * THE MICHIGAN DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION REMINDS MOTORISTS
    TO ADJUST SPEEDS BASED ON THE CONDITIONS… AND TO TAKE IT
    SLOW IN ICE AND SNOW.

    * WEATHER PREPAREDNESS INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE ON LINE AT
    http://WWW.READY.GOV/WINTER AND HTTP://GO.USA.GOV/5OG.

    &&

    $$

    DUKE

  17. John says:

    The latest NWS update is every snow lovers dream!

    1. yooper4021 says:

      Rocky, Rocky, Rocky, Rocky!!

      1. Rocky (Rockford) says:

        That is the spirit! Keep up the good work!

  18. Travis Ulberg (West of Martin, Allegan County) says:

    After reading the GRR NWS update I think they are still down playing the predicted snowfall amounts when the disturbances going through. We had our 2nd and 3rd biggest daily snowfalls last year when we had disturbances go through. The first one(Jan. 23rd) was with a W wind, and we received 6.75″(central Allegan County received 13″). The second one(Feb. 2nd) was with a WSW wind, and we received 7″(SW Kent County received 8-12″). Both of those snowfalls occurred in a 3 to 4 hour period.

    1. John says:

      I think they are too! Especially if we are going to get lake enhanced which they are expecting tomorrow!

  19. Jerrod (Hartford) says:

    NWS mentioned GFS in their long term discussion with the “potential” snow storm for the weekend. Still several days away with the system that far away and no sampling on the upper air network. However, the Euro maps I’ve seen on weather forums look just as encouraging for the possibility. Models likely to change quite a bit in the days ahead with the track and strength.

    1. John says:

      Hoping for it to track a little farther north so that all of west Michigan can get in on the storm!

  20. Scott says:

    I think I speak for every snow lover in this room when I say…

    “Ohhh, BOY!”

    I honestly don’t think you can get as more of a wintery outlook in an area forecast discussion as this. Solid temperatures below freezing, ongoing lake effect, snow chances every day, and now even a synoptic storm to potentially watch – and even wind.

    I’m just going to say that as a normally conservative person I’m actually feeling quite giddy about this! :)

  21. Travis Ulberg (West of Martin, Allegan County) says:

    18Z NAM shows some pretty impressive lake effect with the disturbance for Wednesday afternoon through Wednesday evening with a W to WNW wind.

  22. Jim S (Saugatuck Twp) says:

    18Z GFS showing the potential for a pretty decent snowstorm late in the week…shows it in two waves, with moderate to heavy snow possible. Each run has been getting stronger with more moisture, so there is some potential.

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