Great Lakes Water Levels – and Increasing IceJanuary 9th, 2014 at 9:22 pm by Bill Steffen under Bill's Blog, Weather
First, the MODIS Great Lakes pic. from today (1/9) shows that most of Lake Erie now has an ice cover (though it’s not solid)…notice there are no lake-effect clouds over Lake Erie. Lake Ontario is pretty much all open water, as are most of the Finger Lakes in New York State. Lakes that are deepest are slowest to freeze over. The two deepest (and biggest) of the Finger Lakes are much deeper than Lake Erie. Erie has a maximum depth of 210 feet, while Cuyuga Lake goes down to 435 feet and Seneca Lake’s deepest point is 618 feet deep, nearly 3 times as deep as Lake Erie. Lake Ontario is much deeper than Lake Erie at 802 feet, so it has less surface ice now. The picture shows a good deal of ice in southern Lake Huron. You can see the two islands in Lake Superior, Michipicoten is the bigger island and Caribou is the small island below Michipicoten. You can see Torch Lake NE of Traverse City still has open water. That’s another deep lake, at 285 feet it’s deeper than Lake Erie. …and you can plainly see my tornado scar, WNW of Green Bay. See what else you can see on the image (click on the image to enlarge or click here).
Lake Michigan-Huron is down 1″ in the last month, but is up a remarkable 15″ in the last year. It’s still down 14″ from the average level. Lake Superior is down 2″ in the last month, but is up 14″ year-to-year and is now one inch higher than the average level. Lake Erie is up 7″ in the last month, up 10″ in the last year and is 2″ above the average water level. Lake Ontario is up 4 inches in the last month, up 11″ year-to-year and is also 2″ above the century average. The big story here remains the spectacular year-to-year rise in the levels of all the Great Lakes.
The ice balls on Lake Michigan near Glen Arbor have returned. There was an ice jam on the Niagara River. Van Buren County seeks help to stabilize dunes..and Chinese television comes to cover the cold, ice and winter steam of Lake Michigan.