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Great Lakes Winter Weather and Ice Conditions for 1982-83

By Assel, Raymond A.

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Book Id: WPLBN0000659702
Format Type: PDF eBook
File Size: 1.92 MB.
Reproduction Date: 2005
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Title: Great Lakes Winter Weather and Ice Conditions for 1982-83  
Author: Assel, Raymond A.
Language: English
Subject: Science., Ecology & environment, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (U.S.)
Collections: National Oceanographic Data Center
Publication Date:
Publisher: Government Reference Publication


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Assel, A. A. (n.d.). Great Lakes Winter Weather and Ice Conditions for 1982-83. Retrieved from

Excerpt: Great Lakes Winter Weather And Ice Conditions For 1982-83. Winter 1983 was one of the mildest winters in the past 200 years. One result of the unusual winter weather was the mildest overall ice season on the Great Lakes since systematic observations of ice cover extent on the Lakes were initiated some 20-odd years ago. The 1983 winter developed during the peak of one of the most intense El Nina-Southern Oscillation events of this century. An extremely strong Aleution low that persisted most of the winter was associated with the mild temperatures in the United States. Monthly northern hemispheric circulation patterns were generally weak; no general long wave patterns were able to persist; and 700-mb heights were above normal. Annual maximum ice coverage on the Great Lakes was much below normal: Lake Superior--21% (normal is 75%). Lake Michigan--17% (normal is 45X), Lake Huron--36% (normal is 68X), Lake Erie--25% (normal is 90%), and Lake Ontario--less than 10% (normal is 24%). The economic impact of the below-normal ice cover included reduced U.S. Coast Guard ice breaking assistance to commercial vessels, reduced U.S. Coast Guard flood relief operations in connecting channels of the Great Lakes, and virtually no ice-related winter power losses at hydropower plants on the St. Mary?s, Niagara, and St. Lawrence Rivers.

Table of Contents
CONTENTS ABSTRACT 1. INTRODUCTION 2. SYNOPTIC DESCRIPTION OF THE WINTER 3. WINTER SEVERITY 3.1 Monthly Mean Temperatures and Their Anomalies 3.2 Freezing Degree-Days 3.3 Comparison With Previous Winters PAGE 1 1 2 9 9 9 13 3.3.1 Winter 1931-32 14 3.3.2 Winter 1877-78 14 3.3.3 Winter 1881-82 14 3.3.4 Winter 1850-51 14 3.3.5 winter 1918-19 16 3.3.6 Winter 1889-90 16 3.3.7 winter 1952-53 16 3.3.8 Winter 1948-49 16 3.3.9 winter 1930-31 16 3.4 Typical Ice Conditions in a Mild Winter 16 4. NORMAL SEASONAL ICE COVER PROGRESSION AND THE 1983 GREAT LAKES ICE CYCLE 17 4.1 Data 17 4.2 Lake Superior 17 4.3 Lake Michigan 25 4.4 Lake Huron 27 4.5 Lake St. Clafr 28 4.6 Lake Erie 28 4.7 Lake Ontario 29 5. ECONOMIC IMPACT OF A MILD WINTER 30 6. CONCLUDING REMARKS AND OBSERVATIONS 31 6.1 Winter 1983 31 6.2 The 1983 Great Lakes Ice Cycle 33 7. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS 33 8. REFERENCES 34


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