Hudson Bay Ice

Here it is, mid August, and there is still ice on Hudson bay. Not a lot, yet there it is.

Hudson Bay Ice 14 August 2015

Hudson Bay Ice 14 August 2015

From the Canadian Ice Service.

How unusual is this?


Is a fairly complete paper that goes over the history of Hudson Bay ice, and how it acts. It says:

By early August (Fig. 4) the only ice of significance typically lies off the south-west shore from east of Churchill to the Belchers. Concentrations there average about 3/10, even at that late date. Elsewhere in the Bay, concentrations most years are zero, although ice occasionally survives nearly the whole summer in places where wind flow, air temperature and cloudiness anomalies retard melting.

Thus ice may be reported at any time of year from any part of the Bay. By early August, however, most points have seen their last ice of the season. In James Bay, all but the northernmost parts usually have lost all ice by mid-July.

The line of zero ice concentration, which appears on August and later maps, shows regions where ice never was observed over the nine years for the month in question. It does not imply, of course, that ice is always absent from these regions in that month.

In short: Ice any time of the year in Hudson Bay is possible, but August is usually clear by now. Yet we have ice.

So what does this tell me? That this is NOT “the hottest ever”, and that in fact it is an ordinary run of the mill slightly cold year. The “excess heat” isn’t.

Just on the north side of Hudson Bay is Foxe Basin It’s the whiter patch at the top of Hudson bay in the top image. Here’s a close up:

Foxe Basin Ice 14 Aug 2015

Foxe Basin Ice 14 Aug 2015

From the detail selections here.

It is my opinion, given what I remember of weather in the last half century and given that paper and given various other bits of experience and readings: that this is is absolutely normal. Not too hot. Not too cold. Well inside normal.

And there is nothing wrong with that at all. Nor is there anything wrong with the world climate. It does wander back and forth over several cycle lengths, from the annual season cycle to the 11 year solar cycle to the 56 to 60 year lunar tidal cycle to the 80 to 200 year solar cycles to the 1500 year lunar major cycle. Some times it is colder, like the 1940s, sometime warmer, like the 1930s and 1990s (gee… about 60 year apart, rather like that lunar tidal cycle..) and then cooler again, like, well, now.

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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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8 Responses to Hudson Bay Ice

  1. philjourdan says:

    We are rapidly approaching the time when we will be freezing to death in record heat.

  2. LeeHarvey says:

    Oh E.M… You’ll never get a cushy grant with that attitude.

  3. Larry Ledwick says:

    Interesting to note that we are just days away from the point average temps above 80 deg N begin their seasonal plunge below the freezing line. Once that boundary is crossed only radiant heating from the direct sun shine will be melting ice and that won’t last but a couple weeks.

    Along the same line, just a reminder of this item on Watts Up on an expedition which was canceled due to too much ice in late July.

  4. terrence says:

    See what evil CO2 can do? – More ice, less ice; freezing, warming; up, down; in, out,…

  5. Larry Ledwick says:

    Ecuador is having a volcanic eruption on a 19,000ft volcano which is sending material as high as 15,000 additional ft. It will be worth watching this for how much sulfur compounds it releases and how high the eruption goes (ie does it inject much into the stratosphere which in the tropics is close to 60,000 ft.)

    Even though some contend volcanic eruptions don’t have much effect, my personal experience with the winter that followed El Chichon leads me to suspect otherwise. I guess the debate is still out on this one.

  6. mbaselproems says:

    So many great blogs, so little time. Found the Irish Egypt ancestry one, and yep, the DNA fits the histories pretty well. Ancestry my current obsession, weather fan since high school. Normal year is okay by me. They say we are about to have an unusually mild winter because of giant El Nino stuck over Pacific Ocean. What do you think?

  7. E.M.Smith says:


    Welcome. Well, I don’t see it as a “giant”, just s bit of warmer water (where ‘warmer’ really means less cold as the water off California is COLD…) and that usually means a bit more rain (hopefully an end to the drought) and late winter gets snowy cold up high.

    For what it means to Europe, UK, Australia, Asia etc. look at an “el nino causes” map…

    Just for completion, here’s the La Nina map also:

    Oddly, both show some wet on the West Coast… leaving me to wonder what causes dry. Everything else?

    @Larry Ledwick:

    IMHO one volcano isn’t going to do much at all unless it is a giant one. They seem to get lost in the noise and when they accidentally line up with a cold dip folks shout “CAUSAL!” ignoring all the ones that didn’t get a dip…

    However, when you have an extended run of volcanoes, or one that puts out volumes of gas and dust for a year or two, then there seems to be an impact. ( Or I’m just shouting “Seems Causal!” and ignoring…)

    It is my opinion that shifts of wind and tides from lunar and solar effects is what matters most. Everything else is small stuff. (Well, except the long cycle orbital changes caused by the Gas Giants that puts us in and out of ice age glacials…and the occasional “nuclear winter” from a giant rock fall from space… like the Younger Dryas).

    Oh, and do note that the actual air temperatures tend to lag a month or so behind insolation changes. September is a warm month and I doubt any ice will survive it. If it does…


    Yes, the “magic gas”… only $1 a bottle of this fine snake oil elixir will cure it…


    Are we not there already? The Climate Chicken Littles are screaming “HOTTEST EVER!!!!” yet there are thousands of cattle and some people dying in the frozen Southern Hemisphere…

    @Lee Harvey:

    Yes, I know, an “attitude problem” and not a “team player” and poor at picking up hints about when to “go along to get along” and saying “But that isn’t true…” after The Boss speaks is not the way to get promoted and “clubs” don’t invite me to join and…

    The price I pay for fealty to the truth…

    Maybe I need to start a “Club Of Truth” for folks like me to join… but then I’d likely be kicked out after The Leadership got taken over by the politically inclined… 8-{

  8. Glenn999 says:

    There is some interesting weather info at Joe Bastardi does a free “Saturday Summary” each week. They routinely discuss their outlook for the upcoming winter and iirc there will be quite a bit of snow. Of course if we are talking California or Florida, it could be an altogether different animal. I’m personally hoping for some serious cold down south here.

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