Lake Ice Like It’s 1972 All Over Again

Great Lakes Ice Coverage

Great Lakes Ice Coverage

h/t Glenn in WUWT Tips & Notes.

OK, it’s early in the ice coverage season for the Great Lakes. But we keep hearing how warm it is over in Eastern Canada….

What does this chart show? The ice is off to a very good start with the amount being rather like it was back in 1972. A whole lot of heat is coming out of the water (as that ice is made) and going into the air. Just another example of why temperature is a lousy proxy for heat flow. If you click on the graph you get a gigantic version.

Water temps are interesting too. Looks to me like warm rising in the middle, cold sinking at the edges, as the thinner edges cool quicker. Interesting. Like you can almost see the heat pump out of the lake..

Great Lakes Temperatures 26 Dec 2010

Great Lakes Temperatures 26 Dec 2010

I know it will change very slowly, but here is a ‘live version’ so folks can check up on it from time to time:

Live Great Lakes temperature map

Live Great Lakes temperature map

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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5 Responses to Lake Ice Like It’s 1972 All Over Again

  1. Pascvaks says:

    There’s a lot of heat going through the roof and out the windows up there in them thar Lakes;-)

    Link to above –

    Another link for the curious on current temp variation of the water-

  2. This has been explained by M.Vukcevic north “Y” magnetic dipole and its correlation with temperatures.

  3. E.M.Smith says:

    h/t Pascvaks! I’ve added the water temp chart to the posting.

    @Adolfo Giurfa:

    So is Vukcevic saying that the magnetic dipole is causing the heat to leave? Or just showing a correlation? I’ve seen the (very nice) graph with the two magnetic polar centers and the red spots, but thought that was an upper air thing?

    Maybe I need to go read / look at it again…

  4. slimething says:

    I live just a few minutes from Saginaw Bay, but to be honest have not even checked what the ice conditions are in recent days even weeks! Irresponsible I know, but a few guys at work are going ice fishing this week so it must be doing well. The rivers have frozen earlier than I can recall for quite some time.

    We are expecting a warm up (the “January Thaw”) at week’s end which can wreak havoc on lake ice in a very short time, so it will be interesting what the weather holds for the rest of the winter.

    My thoughts? The SOI is at levels and duration seen only about three times in the last 100 years. I think we’ve seen only a glimpse of what is to come in the next 6 months.

  5. slimething says:

    Well the warm up is starting Thursday. If it doesn’t rain a lot the ice shouldn’t be affected too much, but as we ice fishers know all too well, Lake ice can disappear quite rapidly under the right conditions.

    We’ll know by early next week.

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