Blizzard Summary 1/12-14/24

We announced late last year that we would no longer measure snowfall. Well, at least not regularly 😉

Since we still have a snow board in our observation area — and we had cleared it before it started snowing Friday — we thought we’d stick a ruler down this morning after all was said and done.

Turns out 12.0″ fell in the past 48 hours ending 10 AM Sunday morning. That corresponds to 0.85″ of melted snow (liquid equivalent) that we caught in our precipitation gauge over that period.

Now, take it with a grain of salt because it’s in a somewhat sheltered area that is prone to drifting. However, this spot is lower than some and higher than others. Seems pretty average.

The National Weather Service office in Negaunee Township, just 8 miles up the road on US-41, measured just over 2 feet in that same time period. That is likely due to their higher elevation. Other reports closer to the lakeshore support lower totals such as ours.

In the future, we may provide a storm total measurement after significant events. That’s assuming that nearby drifts don’t expand to include our snow board. That can result from plowed snow mountains up wind growing over the course of the winter.

As far as wind speeds, our max recorded gust was 35 mph out of the north yesterday morning in the 7 o’clock hour. We have good “fetch” from that direction with no obstacles within 100 feet. The U.S. Coast Guard, located near McCarty’s Cove on the lakeshore, caught a 58 mph gust in the 10 AM hour but mostly clocked upper 30s / low 40s gusts throughout Saturday morning.

The End of Snowfall Measurements

When things get bad (2019)

Sadly, we won’t be providing snowfall measurements any longer. It has proven too difficult on our urban property to keep the plowed & drifted snowfall separate from the measurement area. We tried our best to overcome siting issues with multiple boards and locations. Too often, however, particularly during wind-driven storm events, the measurements turn into guesses. We need more open space.

Consider also the practical challenges that twice-daily measurements present in the winter. The observer (me) better not be sick or traveling.

Ultimately, the cost was too great while the benefit — long-term data on snowfall in the city — could not be realized.

I figured it’s best to pull the plug on it at the end of the calendar year.

We started measuring snowfall in the fall of 2017 and have 6 complete years (2018-2023) of weather history data. Detailed snow measurement reports for Fall 2019 – early Winter 2023 can be found in our Snow Measurement Archives.

I will still be providing daily liquid precipitation measurements year round for our weather history records. In the winter this involves melting snow to its liquid equivalent amount.

Alternatively, you can always view official snow observations for the city by visiting NOAA NOWData and selecting “Marquette, MI” as the “Location”, “Daily data for a month” as the “Product”, selecting the current month under “Options” and pressing “Go”.


The Great Pre-Christmas Blizzard of ’22

The pre-Christmas winter weather event began with two days of moderate snow & relatively calm winds (12/21-22). We were under a “Winter Weather Advisory” during the front side of the area of low pressure. Once the center of the low passed to our south, winds flipped to the northwest, and the blizzard warning began (1 AM 12/23) which lasted until 1 AM 12/25.

While our maximum wind gust of 38 mph on 12/23 was nowhere near a record for our station, that day ended as the windiest day in station history (7.5 years in service) based on sustained winds. The following day was our 4th windiest.

Continue reading “The Great Pre-Christmas Blizzard of ’22”

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