Lake Superior stays above average Duluth News Tribune (8/4) The water level of Lake Superior rose by less than usual in July but the big lake still sits seven inches above the long-term average for Aug. 1, and an inch higher than at this time last year.
Beaches losing ground as lake levels rise The Sheboygan Press (7/22) Tourists returning to Sheboygan, Wisc. this year have noticed something a little unusual about the lakefront: the beaches seem to be shrinking.
The past 7 days were a break from the heat of the previous week, with below normal temperatures over much of the basin, except the Lake Ontario basin where temperatures ranged from 2°F below to 4°F above normal. Precipitation amounts ranged from about 0.75 inches below normal over much of the Lake Michigan basin to up to 1.5 inches above normal over the Lake Superior basin and parts of the Lake Huron, Erie, and Ontario basins. Runoff over the last 7 days has been within the normal to above normal range for this time of year. Warmer temperatures are expected to return over the weekend, with highs reaching the upper 80s in the southern portion of the basin by Tuesday and continuing into Wednesday. The 7-day precipitation forecast calls for total rainfall amounts of over an inch in southwest Wisconsin and parts of southern Michigan on Friday and Saturday, but lower amounts across the rest of the basin and little precipitation for the remainder of the week.
Lake Level Conditions:
A brief rise on Lake Superior over the last 3 days interrupted its normal seasonal decline, and as a result, the forecast shows Lake Superior starting at 602.69 ft, one inch above its level of 30 days ago. All other lakes are at lower levels than this time last month. All lakes are above their levels of one year ago. Lake Superior is 1 inch above last year’s level, Lake Michigan-Huron is 9 inches above last year’s level, Lake Erie is 8 inches above, and Lakes St. Clair and Ontario are both 6 inches above last year’s levels. Over the next 30 days, Lakes Superior is projected to fall 1 inch and Lake Michigan-Huron is expected to fall 2 inches in the same period. Water levels in Lakes St. Clair, Erie, and Ontario are predicted to drop 3, 5, and 8 inches, respectively. See the Daily Levels page for more water level information.
Forecasted outflows / channel conditions:
Lake Superior’s outflow through the St. Mary’s River is predicted to be above average for the month of August. Lake Michigan-Huron’s outflow into the St. Clair River and Lake St. Clair’s outflow into the Detroit River are forecasted to be near average in August. The August outflow of Lake Erie into the Niagara River is projected to be above average, and Lake Ontario’s outflow into the St. Lawrence River is expected to be above average in August.
Official records are based on monthly average water levels and not daily water levels. Users of the Great Lakes, connecting channels and St. Lawrence River should keep informed of current conditions before undertaking any activities that could be affected by changing water levels. Mariners should utilize navigation charts and refer to current water level readings.
Ice information can be found at the National Ice Center's webpage.