Winds will be much lighter Thu. and Fri. Power crews will be working to restore power. Thursday evening we had up to 35,000 Consumers Energy customers without power and statewide we were up to 97,000 without power. The Lakeshore Flood Warning for 60 mph wind gusts verified well.
The G.R. National Weather Service said:
"WE STILL EXPECT THE STRONGEST WINDS TO BE ALONG LAKE MICHIGAN SOUTH OF GRAND HAVEN WITH WIND GUSTS OF 50 TO 60 MPH BY LATE MORNING THROUGH THE AFTERNOON. FURTHER NORTH AND INLAND WE EXPECT WIND GUSTS PEAKING AT 45 TO 55 MPH. THIS WILL BE A STRONGER AND LONGER-LASTING WIND EVENT THAN THE STORM LAST WEEK, CAUSING MORE POWER OUTAGES AND WORSE BEACH EROSION THAN THAT STORM." Kudos to the G.R. NWS for a very good forecast on the winds and lakeshore flooding with this storm.
There were Storm Warnings for Lake Michigan. A Storm Warning is one step above a Gale Warning. As winds increase, we go from Small Craft Advisories to Gale Warnings to Storm Warnings and then to Hurricane Warnings.
The High Wind Warning (above map) successfully forecast where the highest wind gusts were going to be.
High winds also hit Iowa, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio with many reports of wind gusts as high as 60 mph.
Here’s some peak wind gusts from our area…for a more complete list hit this link.
This is the beach at South Haven Wed. evening. The water came up the beach all the way into the parking lot. This is as high as I have ever seen the water. However, the lake level was higher in 1986. Flooding was reported in Saugatuck – the flow on the Kalamazoo River reversed and water came up the river. The water level rose over 6″ just in a couple hours, flooding a few basements. There was water on the road going to Holland St. Park…you had to drive through about 4-5″ of water to get there. There was water over S. Shore Drive at Eldean’s on the south side of Lake Macatawa. There was also water up into the marinas at Grand Haven.
Here’s rainfall totals since Tue. evening. The most rain was in Grand Rapids. Totals were not quite as great along I-94.
The Wednesday storm has produced a band of heavy snow across Colorado, Nebraska, NW Iowa, SE Minnesota, northwest Wisconsin and much of Upper Michigan. This hampered both ground traffic and air traffic, especially for the busy airport at Minneapolis.
Here’s the evening Climate Summary from Marquette. The Airport has had 15.2″ of snow Thursday thru 5 pm. Despite the heavy snow, it’s not even a daily record for Marquette – they had 19.2″ of snow on Nov. 27 in 2001.
Winter Storm Watches and Winter Weather Advirories extended all the way to California. The Blizzard Warning is for a small area of Montana. . We did have a couple of tornadoes in NE LA – with two injuries reported when a trailer flipped over.
Football Weather – the models have backed off a bit on the amount of rain for Saturday. There is still a chance of light rain showers at both Ann Arbor and E. Lansing. Temperatures will be in the upper 30s with an east wind at 10-20 mph. Hang onto the ball, guys. The Wisconsin/Minnesota in Minneapolis could be interesting with at least snow showers and perhaps steady snow. That game is on WOTV4 Saturday at 3:30 pm.
This is the latest 8-14 day temperature outlook from the Climate Prediction Center finally brings the above average up into Michigan. Much of the country should be in mild zonal flow. Keep in mind that average high temperatures are in the mid 30s by the 2nd week of December…so “above average” isn’t warm…we may see highs in the low 40s.
So, to sum things up…the biggest story is the winds are diminishing. We’ll be dry for this Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday – then another storm will bright wind and rain, then snow over the weekend. Again the heavy snow from the weekend system will fall northwest of our area. Watch us on TV and keep checking the blog for later updates.