Winter comes early during first 2 weeks of November

Weather
Traffic creeps through downtown Niles, Mich., Monday, Nov. 11, 2019, after a fall storm dumped several inches of snow in southwest Michigan. (Don Campbell/The Herald-Palladium via AP)

Traffic creeps through downtown Niles, Mich., Monday, Nov. 11, 2019, after a fall storm dumped several inches of snow in southwest Michigan. (Don Campbell/The Herald-Palladium via AP)

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Where did fall go?

The winter solstice, arriving Dec. 21, is still more than a month away but winter didn’t want to wait.

A review of temperatures for the first two weeks of November unveils just how remarkably cold it has been. Grand Rapids temperatures through Nov. 14 are 10.8 degrees below average. It’s the third coldest start to November on record — behind 1991 and 1951.

The breadth of cold is impressive. Only one state, Florida, escaped the onslaught of cold east of the Rockies. There were nearly 400 record lows set in the first two weeks across the eastern U.S.

Folks of West Michigan put a notch in their “hardy badge” as Grand Rapid’s temperatures stayed below 30 degrees for 78 consecutive hours with 26 of those hours below 20 degrees.

Arctic cold this time of year is almost always associated with snow and we received a fair amount of that here and outside of Michigan. This is the snow cover Tuesday Nov. 12 across the U.S. It blanketed 30% of the nation ranking second most for the date. Half of the states across the U.S. had at least some snow cover.

Closer to home Grand Rapids recorded 10 of 14 days with at least a trace of snow.

Nov. 11 brought the most with a near record of 5.5 inches and a record 5.6 inches in Lansing. That paled in comparison with a whopping 24 and 22 inches that was measured in Bangor and Glenn, respectively.

Those are lakeshore communities that had additional help with lake effect. There was an amazing 33 inches measured in Empire, just west of Traverse City.

This is all great news for skiers as many resorts, including Bittersweet, are open for business. Sault Ste. Marie has a snow depth of 10 inches.

The cold will relax a bit in the coming week but still remaining below average much of the time.

That trend should continue across most of the Great Lakes leading up to Thanksgiving.

Now the question remains — will a cold November hand off to a cold winter?

Storm Team 8 does its best to explain why we think this winter will end up colder and snowier than average.

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