Lake Michigan Water Levels, Temperature and News

Bill's Blog

This beautiful drone shot of fall colors at Lake Michigan is from Jack Martin. Click this link to see more of Jack’s fine pictures.

Let’s start with Lake Michigan’s water temperature

Lake Michigan Water Temperature over the Past 25 Years

Here’s the Lake Michigan water temperature for the past 25 years. The black line is 2021. The red line is 2016, another relatively warm year. You can see that the Lake Michigan water temp. this past October was warmer than any October in the past 25 years, but the cooler weather during the first 5 days of August knocked the temp. back down below 2016. That bulge in March that one year was the insanely warm March of 2012, when the blossoms frosted out in April and we lost the fruit crop. I swam in Gun Lake on the last day of winter that year!

Lakes Superior, Michigan and Huron have all experienced significant declines in water levels over the past year. Lake Michigan/Huron is down 3″ in the last month and down 16″ in the last year. One inch of water on Lake Michigan/Huron is 790 billion gallons. So, 16″ would be a loss of 12.64 TRILLION gallons of water – pretty amazing. Lake Michigan/Huron is still 17″ higher than the average November level, but it’s also 22″ lower than the highest November level which was reached in 1986.

Lake Superior is also down 3″ in the last month. It’s down 11″ year-to-year. The lake is now 2′ BELOW the November average level and it’s 19″ below the highest November level, which was reached in 1985.

Lake Erie is up 2″ in the last month. The lake is one inch higher than one year ago. It’s still 27″ higher than the November average level, but it’s 6″ below the highest water level, which was reached in 1986.

Lake Ontario is up 3″ in the last month and up 9″ in the last year. The lake is 12″ above the November average, but still 13″ below the highest November level, which was set in 1945.

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