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Weekly Great Lakes Water Levels

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Weekly Forecast

WEEKLY GREAT LAKES WATER LEVEL UPDATE

March 27, 2015

 

WEATHER CONDITIONS

In most of the Great Lakes basin, temperatures were around average last weekend except Sunday when temperatures plummeted and remained well below average through Tuesday.  On Wednesday, the Great Lakes basin experienced a brief warm-up, and notable precipitation fell throughout the basin.  No other significant precipitation occurred in the Great Lakes region in the past 7 days besides the several inches of snow that fell in Illinois and northern Indiana. Moreover, precipitation in the basin has been well below average thus far in March.  This Friday and Saturday, temperatures will range from 10-22 degrees below normal in the vast majority of the basin. Near average temperatures will arrive at the beginning of the workweek. Snow is expected in the vast majority of the basin on Friday, and rain showers on Sunday.

LAKE LEVEL CONDITIONS

Lakes Superior and Michigan-Huron are 6 and 20 inches, respectively, above their levels of a year ago. Lake St. Clair is 11 inches above last year’s level. Lake Erie is at the same level of a year ago, and Lake Ontario is 5 inches below what it was at this time last year. Lake Superior is predicted to rise 2 inches over the next month, while Lake Michigan-Huron is expected to climb 4 inches. Lakes St. Clair, Erie, and Ontario are forecasted to rise 5, 8, and 10 inches, respectively over the next 30 days. Ice jams remain a challenge to forecasting in the connecting channels, especially the St. Clair River. Water levels may fluctuate significantly while ice is present. See our Daily Levels web page for more water level information.

FORECASTED MONTHLY OUTFLOWS/CHANNEL CONDITIONS

Lake Superior’s outflow through the St. Mary’s River is forecasted to be above average for the month of March. Lake Michigan-Huron’s outflow into the St. Clair River and Lake St. Clair’s outflow into the Detroit River are predicted to be above average in March. In addition, the outflow of Lake Erie into the Niagara River and Lake Ontario’s outflow into the St. Lawrence River are predicted to be near average in March.

ALERTS

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 website.

SUPERIOR

MICH-HURON

ST. CLAIR

ERIE

ONTARIO

Forecasted Water Level for Mar 27, 2015 (feet)

601.67

579.00

574.48

570.96

244.16

Chart Datum (feet)

601.10

577.50

572.30

569.20

243.30

Difference from chart datum (inches)

+7

+18

+26

+21

+10

Difference from average water level for Feb 27, 2015 (inches*)

-2

0

+15

+2

-1

Difference from average water level for Mar 27, 2014 (inches*)

+6

+20

+11

0

-5

Difference from long-term monthly average of Mar (inches)

+7

+7

+8

-2

-10

Difference from highest monthly average of record for Mar (inches)

-9

-25

-28

-33

-37

Year of highest recorded monthly mean

1986

1986

1986

1986

1952

Difference from lowest monthly average of record for Mar (inches)

+26

+35

+41

+33

+19

Year of lowest recorded monthly mean

1926

1964

1934

1934

1935

Projected change in levels by Apr 27, 2015 (inches)

+2

+4

+5

+8

+10

ALL DATA SHOWN IN THIS SUMMARY ARE REFERENCED TO IGLD 1985

*VALUES FOR SPECIFIC DAY ARE BASED ON 3-DAY DAILY AVERAGE AROUND SPECIFIED DATE

LONG TERM AVERAGE PERIOD OF RECORD, 1918-2014

FORECASTED INFORMATION PROVIDED BY

RECORDED DATA (1918 – present)

FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT

Department of the Army

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Detroit District Disclaimer

NOTICE:  All data contained herein is preliminary in nature and therefore subject to change. The data is for general information purposes ONLY and SHALL NOT be used in technical applications such as, but not limited to, studies or designs. All critical data should be obtained from and verified by the United States Army Corps of Engineers, Detroit District, Engineering and Technical Services, Great Lakes Hydraulics and Hydrology Office, 477 Michigan Ave., Detroit, MI 48226. The United States of America assumes no liability for the completeness or accuracy of the data contained herein and any use of such data inconsistent with this disclaimer shall be solely at the risk of the user.