I found a Thanksgiving dandelion. This was at the Alpine Athletic Field where I walk some days. Most all of the field remains snow covered…but I found a patch where the snow had melted. Lo and behold in the middle of the patch was a blooming dandelion. A couple days ago, this spot was covered by snow…probably over 6″ of snow…and today – a pretty flower springs to life in late November.

I remember picking a blooming dandelion on Christmas Day in 1982. That year it was 65 degrees on Christmas Day – one of five days that December that had high temps. in the 60s. That year the snowiest day of the winter was March 21 – the first day of spring!

Alpine Athletic Field Wednesday afternoon

I took this pic. around 4:30 pm Wed. Note the long shadow. The days are getting short snow in late November. Today (Thu.) Grand Rapids gets only 9 hours and 27 minutes of daylight (sunrise at 7:45 am and sunset at 5:12 pm). That shrinks to 9 hours and 30 seconds at the Winter Solstice on March 21.

The last two days combined have brought us 88% of possible sunshine and an average wind speed of just 4 mph. It’s really been nice for travelers.

Sunset – Alpine Township Wed. 11 23 22

This was sunset Wed. evening over the orchard. You can see a utility wire in the top of the picture. We still have about a 90% snow cover. We got up to around around a foot of snow on the ground here early Sunday morning.

Solar noon – the moment the sun is highest in the sky – is now at 12:29 pm. At solar noon, the sun is 26 deg. above the southern horizon. That goes down to 24 degrees at the Winter Solstick on the 24th. The sun is rising in the east southeast (118 deg.) and setting more toward the southwest than due west (242 deg.).

Bittersweet Ski Area – Wed. evening 11 23 22

Some skiers and boarders were out Wed. evening at Bittersweet. They’ve been able to make snow. They’ll be closed today (Thu.) for the holiday, but will reopen on Friday.

MODIS satellite picture of the Lake Michigan sector Wed. PM 11 23 22

Here’s the afternoon Lake Michigan satellite picture from Weds. PM. It was clear across the state. The white you see is snow on the ground. Note the ground is not white (no snow on the ground) in some areas close to Lake Michigan (Ottawa Co.). The relatively strong winds during the lake-effect snow event pushed the heavier snow totals east to near US 131. Here’s a loop of the Western Great Lakes from Wed. PM.

See what you can pick out on the map…Gull Lake, Gun Lake – I can even see Reeds Lake. The lakes have open water now and show up nicely surrounded by snowy ground.

The first 11 days of this November were 9.7° warmer than average. We didn’t have a single day cooler than average. November 12-23 was 8.6° colder than average and we didn’t have a single day warmer than average. Today (Thu.) the average high/low temperature is 44°/30°. We’ll be near to a little warmer than average thru about Dec. 2. Then I think we flip back to a cold pattern.

This is the 8-14 day temperature outlook from the Climate Prediction Center. A large cold air mass is spreading to the east and south across the Great Lakes. Considering the first day or two of this period may actually be warmer than average, this means that some pretty cold air is on the warm for the period beginning around the 3rd or 4th. This cold pattern looks like it will hold through a good portion of the month of December. It could be a chilly Christmas and a White Christmas. The mid-Lake Michigan buoy is reading a water temp. of 46°. There’s still plenty of opportunity for some significant lake-effect snow in December.

Forecast High Temperatures for the U.S. this Thanksgiving Day

Mild temperatures are expected today over most all of the U.S. We’ll see 40s and low 50s in Michigan – low 80s in central and southern Florida.

Marginal Risk for a Severe Thunderstorm (dark green on the map) for SE Texas and SW Louisiana.

Thunderstorms in SE Texas, while W Texas gets a snowstorm.

ALSO: The weather looks good for the Turkey Trot in G.R. this Thanksgiving morning. Low-mid 30s and dry. Check out this Texas thunderstorm. Strong winds in S. California. Sunset at Pensacola Beach. Beautiful pic. of Mt. Katahdin in Maine. Large “deer” in Scotland. An eyeful of the Eiffel. Waterspouts in Italy. Cool, but not outrageously cold in AK – Barter Island dipped to -13 and Northway to -10. No more leap seconds?