Lake Superior will have to play catch-up to get close to average ice-cover. Our mild winter so far has produced only around 4 percent ice-cover on the big lake so far.
That’s well below the average of around 20 percent by late January.
Great Lakes historically low ice-cover
Ice-cover on the Great Lakes as a whole is running near historical lows. You can see on the chart below that this season is running among the lowest on record for the Great Lakes. The average ice cover on the Great Lakes by this date is about 19 percent.
Another arctic shot ahead?
It looks like we may be making some more ice on the Great Lakes as we move into February. The upper air forecast charts suggest another wave of arctic air may dive south in about 10 days.
The medium-range GFS plots suggest the first weekend of February could be very cold. These projections usually moderate as we move colder, but the early numbers are attention-getting.
I’m skeptical about absolute temperature forecasts this far out, but it will be interesting to see if the Twin Cities metro area hits minus 28 two winters in a row.
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