Great Lakes water levels and news

Bill's Blog
Isle Royale National Park Ranger III - 60 years_1534732263799.jpg.jpg

The above picture is the RANGER III, celebrating 60 years of service ferrying passengers from Houghton MI to Isle Royale National Park.  The ferry is 165 feet long and can hold 128 passengers.  There’s a contest going on – Isle Royale N.P. would like to see your picture of the Ranger III.  Check out this link to find out how you can be a winner. 

This is our GVSU skycam in downtown G.R.  You can see the S-Curve and the Grand River.  The river is showing sandbars and a rather low water level.  But the river usually at it’s lowest flow in late summer.  Tonight, the river is at 90% of average flow.

We’ve had a bit of a drought going on in parts of Michigan and people have asked why that hasn’t lowered the level of Lake Michigan more than it has.  First, we are still getting an above average flow of water down the St. Mary’s River from Lake Superior.  Second, while some areas have had a dry summer (difference from average rainfall since June 1:  Grand Rapids -3.07″, Holland -2.87″, Battle Creek -2.49″), other areas have had above average rainfall since June 1 (Kalamazoo +0.54″, Flint +1.09″, S. Bend +1.41″, Chicago (O’Hare) +2.23″ and Marquette +3.56″). 

The water level of Lake Michigan/Huron is down 1″ in the last month, down 2″ in the last year.  However, the level is still 15″ above the average August level.  Lake Superior is unchanged in the last month, down 5″ in the last year.  Superior is still 5″ above the average water level.  Lake Erie is down 3″ in the last month, up 1″ in the last year.  Lake Erie is still 19″ above the average August water level.  Lake Ontario is down 6″ in the last month, down 20″ in the last year, but still 1″ above the average August level.  Lake St. Clair is down 3″ in the last month, down 1″ in the last year and stands 19″ above the average August water level. 

Here’s Lake Michigan water temps. for the past 6 years.  We are currently 2nd warmest behind 2016 for average water temp. for the date. 

Great Lakes News:  Grants to help control Great Lakes nutrient runoffCargo traffic through the St. Lawrence Seaway is up this yearPlanetarium team searches Lake Michigan for meteoritesSuperior hiking trail up to 310 milesDocumenting Manitou Island’s shipwrecksNational Museum of the Great LakesHeavy rain caused big sewage overflowMarina could be unnavigable in two yearsProgram raises millions to restore Great Lakes habitatCommercial Fishing Operations Reporting Record CatchNine Michigan beaches closed because of E.coliRip current survivor shares storyExplore pre-historic timesResearchers discover 2 new non-native species in Great LakesThe “holy grail” of Great Lakes shipwrecks disappeared 339 years ago this weekLost Villages of the St. Lawrence River, Canada’s AtlantisDisappearing beachesOld photos of Great Lakes lighthouses

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Weather Tools