Cool Pattern Continues

March 6th, 2014 at 2:17 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather  Cool will rule.  Click on the images to enlarge.  On the left is the 6-10 day temperature outlook from the Climate Prediction Center and on the right we have the 8-14 day outlook that runs from March 13-19.  Looks like a cool St. Patrick’s Day.  We better get Cedar Springs to start making a little green flannel.   It’s the same old-same old…trough and cooler than average weather in the East and a ridge with warmer and dry weather in the West.  The average high temperature for Grand Rapids is now 40…by St. Patrick’s Day it’s 45 and by the end of the month, average high temperatures are in the low 50s (so by then a day that’s 10 degrees colder than average would still be in the low 40s.  The days continue to lengthen at the rate of 2 1/2 minutes each day.  The change to Daylight Saving Time (spring ahead one hour) is this weekend.

Model update:  Some sunshine today and cool…temps. in mid-upper 20′s this afternoon.  The NAM (caribou) has 2.2″ of snow for G.R. on Saturday and 0.7″ for Kalamazoo.  The GFS plot and European keep us basically dry.  We get a little light rain/snow around next Monday, but the main storm will pass to the SE of Michigan.  That storm will pull down another batch of chilly air from Canada for the middle of next week (Weds./Thurs.).  The good news is not a lot of precipitation over the next week and temperatures will moderate a little.

367 Responses to “Cool Pattern Continues”

  1. Brad (Van Buren) says:

    Off topic but why the hell are gas prices so high in this area. This crap is ridiculous! Does anybody have a logical explanation?

    1. Brad (Van Buren) says:

      Oh…a newspaper in Milwaukee is reporting part of the problem being that refineries are in the process of switching over to SUMMER BLEND. That makes total sense now that summer is right around the corner…NOT!!! What a bunch of horse crap! There is my rant for the day.

    2. Brian(Grandville) says:

      I heard they are switching from the winter blend to the summer blend. If so, that’s not a good excuse. But then I heard they weren’t doing that anymore. I talked to a few people over the past few days about this, and the conclusion between everyone was flat out price gouging.

    3. John (Norton Shores) says:

      Their excuse is this winter but in reality they just want $$$

      1. Tim (Spring Lake) says:

        They have built in excuses year round. The cold, the heat, changing of blends, refinery maintenance. Whatever is convenient.

        1. Paul m says:

          No the government in bed with the oil company’s!

        2. Matt (Spring Lake) says:

          Hah…For real! So irritating. I’m surprised they haven’t used Russia as an excuse…wait, they probably have.

    4. Mark (East Lansing) says:

      Michigan is 40 cents higher than the national average. There is no logical explanation. They can charge us whatever they want and no matter what, we’re going to pay it.

      1. Michael g (se GR) says:

        Buy stock in oil companies. Profit from it.

        1. Ned S. (East of Holland) says:

          We need more refineries. Maybe instead of a pipeline from North Dakota to the gulf coast (where most refineries are located), how about building them in North Dakota? Just a thought.

        2. Mark (East Lansing) says:

          You’re right, Ned. That pipeline will take all that oil directly to the gulf coast and then to places all over the globe except the US. Doesn’t seem to make sense to me.

    5. Kris says:

      Spring Break is coming for K-12 schools and they all know that people travel south for their plans, regardless of prices.

  2. John (Norton Shores) says:

    At least a 50% chance that the Grand River at Jackson will see major flood stages this year and a 80% chance for moderate, I would be concerned if you live in that area of the Grand River!

  3. Michael g (se GR) says:

    Don’t remember exactly where the Grand peaked last year, but the latest NWS update says it has a 50% chance of reaching 20.7′, and a 10% chance if reaching 24.6′. If I remember right it was around 22′, 24.6′ would be catastrophic.

    Seems like someone around here (Bill) mentioned that historic floods on the Grand tend to come in consecutive years. But, hey, you can’t forecast weather more than two days out, right?

    1. Wswplz says:

      Lets hope for a gradual warming…Btw on a side note this system is tracking further north still. Not sure how the other models are running with the data, but the GFS looks promising around Tuesday / Wednesday time frame.

      1. Jim S (Saugatuck Twp) says:

        That would be probably a high end advisory event with the heaviest snow GR to the north. Canadian and Euro. have a much stronger storm….but my money is on the GFS. It has been more accurate in the long range this winter, and these 3-6″ type storms have been pretty frequent this winter.

      2. Michael g (se GR) says:

        Yeah, that would be a heavy wet 3-6″, but if I had to bet, I’d say this ends up being more of an east coast storm, with us on the fringes.

  4. Cort S. says:

    Last year’s crest at downtown GR: 21.85 feet.
    Major flood stage is 23 feet.

    According to conditional simulations, there is a 25-30% chance of exceeding the crest level seen downtown last year.

    1. Brian(Grandville) says:

      Someone mentioned earlier that last years flood had weakened the flood walls. That may become a factor if we get a big water rise on the river this spring.

      1. Cort S. says:

        I would hope that that is nothing more than a rumor. If anyone has a source for that, let us know.

        1. Michael g (se GR) says:

          Yeah, that was an assumption. You know what they say about assuming……..

          Good thing Fartwell assured the Feds (in spite of his profound concerns about the effects of global warming) that the flood walls are PLENTY high. No way we should have spent the money we wasted on those fancy million dollar bus stops and real brick crosswalks on higher flood walls.

        2. Cort S. says:

          Some minor repairs, perhaps:

          But let’s not go around thinking that the flood wall is just going to collapse or breach.

    2. Cort S. says:

      The Grand River at Ada also has about a 25-30% chance of exceeding the crest seen last year:

      1. Wswplz says:

        Does anyone know when the flood walls were consructed?

        1. Cort S. says:

          It was sometime after the great flood of 1904. This is why last year’s flood had a higher crest than the 1904 flood, even though the 1904 flood was carrying more water. This creates a bit of an apples-and-oranges comparison in our flood record.

        2. Wswplz says:

          How do we know the volume of the flood waters in 1904? So following that equation we have narrowed the current flow of the river as opposed to years in the past, and is that just near downtown or all throughout the grand?

        3. Cort S. says:

          We’re just talking about the downtown area here.

          You can conceivably calculate the volume of the river flood in 1904 if you know the depth of the river bed back then, have a good terrain height map of Grand Rapids, and know how high the water level got up to certain buildings. You could calculate the cubic-feet-per-second flow of the river with a model given that information plus some additional upstream and downstream information.

          The flood wall now prevents the river floodwaters from spreading into the surrounding neighborhoods near downtown, so instead of the river spreading out like in 1904, the river level goes up.

        4. Wswplz says:

          I wasn’t sure if the river had been dredged out in places as well over time which would also factor in to the equation when using water marks and such to calculate volume of flow in the river. It sounds like the water had more places to spread out before we put in some of the safety measures to protect downtown GR. Im not implying this was a bad thing in any way of course, but rather an observation. Thanks Cort for the information!

  5. on the Grand says:

    The 2 floods that happen around the Spring Lake area was due to ice jams at the 31 bridge. Spring Lake got the worse of that and they finally dynamited after the coast guard could only to so far up the river. It was like you pulled the plug from a bath tub. The water just went down. The second time, they dynamited right away. No fooling around because of the damage created from the first flood. We were out and about today and its is solid from the high school right through to the light house and more, but there was open water at the power plant. Not sure if a coast guard boat could enter right now. At the bridge the clearance is 18 ft. Now at my place the water have climbed the seawall (7ft) 3 times. Only once has it made it up to the 100 year flood mark and that was due to that ice jam. Last year when Grand Rapids had their flood, the water was 6 inches below the seawall top edge. We watch the water levels at the Robinson Township but find that it does not really apply to our area.That area has a bend in the river and is a low lying area, but water has come up to Mercury Road before. This year I am not sure what will happen. The waterways have to open up or there will be a backup down river, where the water is open and ice free. Some communities will assist you and others leave you on your own. We already have the pumps now because there will be a rush on them. We have cleared out the shed and tied everything down. We have some sand bags and are prepare to lose the basement. We are going to try to save the furnace. We have flood insurance, but it is not an easy task to claim. A lot of fine fine print. It is almost laughable. What really scares me is the ice, until you see its force. It is indescribable. And yes I live on the river and yes it is wonderful and beautiful, but I am fully aware of its risks.

    1. Michael g (se GR) says:

      In the GR area, there is some open water below the dam, and on the east side of where 196 crosses the river by Market, but most of the rest is solidly frozen.

    2. Wswplz says:

      For what its worth I will keep you and those that could be effected in my prayers, as others who wish to should do the same because prayer in numbers is always more powerful. I don’t wont to infringe on anyones spiritual or religious beliefs, but even prayer for the safety of thy neighbor in the name of being kind to others can be adopted by all. Yes I know Ive been one who has been cheering on this amazing winter we have been having, but I don’t over look the fact that there can be negative outcomes from a harsh season like the one we are in. Lets hope that this never comes to be.

    3. GunLakeDeb says:

      I don’t know if you’ll read this since I’m kind of late-posting, but I understand what you are saying about the ice – I suspect a thousand-pound chunk of ice with floodwaters pushing it has the force of a bulldozer :-( Praying for a slow warmup this spring, to dissipate all that locked-up water peacefully.

  6. Michael g (se GR) says:

    New GFS has a bit more snow on Saturday morning, but only a little next week as it keeps the streams separate until the systems are by us. Still looks chilly to end the week. How many below normal months in a row will this be? Sure Travis has that info at his fingertips.

    1. Wswplz says:

      Only above normal or near normal anomalies as he prefers the warmer side of the equation….hehe

    2. Brian (Grandville) says:

      If it’s not world wide, it’s irrelevant right.

  7. on the Grand says:

    The ice this year is thick, at my place it is 18 inches.

  8. on the Grand says:

    On the lighter side,there were several flocks of ducks and one of geese returning from somewhere. They flew up and down the water looking for open water. Finally land on the frozen river. Must of thought to themselves, what the heck and then flew off again.

    1. Wswplz says:

      Did the Biggert- waters act bill ever make it through congress?

  9. Wswplz says:

    Does anyone else experience the blog reduce in size on your computer on occasion, as it seems to do so when the volume of posts go up, or maybe it has to do with links that are posted?? I think we are ready for a new

    1. Wswplz says:

      * sorry to go off on a tangent, back to weather, as I’m typing this to myself…sorry for taking up

    2. Jack says:

      Yup, I thought it was just my iPad 1…. Which is pretty much out of date.. ;-)

  10. Cali1005 says:

    So what the news on that potential snowstorm next week?

    1. Wswplz says:

      Cali there are a few posts above speculating about our chances. ^^^^^

    2. Jacob G says:

      Well both the 00Z GFS and GEM models keep it more of positively tilted trough and progress through the Ohio valley, also the trend on the GFS was much further south. Waiting on the EURO in the next 1-2 hours to see what is up. Could be hard to get a negatively tiled trough at this point, but the models are struggling that is for sure on narrowing in on this. During the seasonal changes it is the trickiest times to forecast not only for humans but computers too.

      1. Cali1005 says:

        Oh boy lets hope ALL the models have the storm passing us to the south. Michigan has enough snowcover to contend with :)

  11. Jacob G says:

    On side note we hit 92.2% ice coverage on the Great Lakes today. Looking like tomorrow we should peak, was hoping we could get > 94% for the record.

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