Quick Links

Redirecting...

Great Lakes Water Level Future Scenarios - October 2022 Scenario - November Update

Water Level Scenarios Summary:

This product is not an official forecast of Great Lakes water levels. Rather, this product is meant to illustrate outcomes that would occur under historical weather and water supply condition, with scenarios chosen based on similarities to recent conditions. For the official forecast, please see our Monthly Bulletin of Great Lakes Water Levels. This tool has been predominantly used to show the possible range of water levels in the upcoming year based on historical hydrologic conditions and water supplies. Beginning in 2021, we will be modifying our scenarios to account for different time periods based on the scenario that is chosen. 

 

Water levels follow a seasonal cycle where during the fall and early winter, the lakes generally decline due to an increase in evaporation as temperatures decline and cold air moves over the relatively warm lake waters. In the spring and early summer, water levels typically rise due to increased precipitation and enhanced runoff from snowmelt. We refer to the combined effect of precipitation over the lake, evaporation from the lake, and runoff to the lake as Net Basin Supply (NBS). This edition of the Water Level Future Scenarios showcases the potential water levels if the water supplies that were received in ten of the most recent La Niña fall and winter seasons were experienced. These ten years are represented by the purple plume on the graphics. Two years are called out on the plot, 1975-76 and 2000-01, because these are the only other two times in recorded history that there have been three consecutive winters of La Niña conditions, which is also likely to happen in the winter of 2022-23. The green and blue lines represent the scenario years, 1975-76 and 2000-01, and indicate on the graphic the water levels that would occur if the NBS that was received in those two years were to occur. Please note that the year 2000-01 is included in the purple plume, but 1975-76 is not because it was not part of the most recent 10 years of La Niña conditions in the fall and winter.  The most recent coordinated 6-month forecast is also shown for comparison.



Click on the individual graphics to view a larger, printer-friendly image (pdf).


12-Month Outlook Legend

 
Lake Superior 12-Month Outlook Graphic Lakes Michigan-Huron 12-Month Outlook Graphic
Lake St. Clair 12-Month Outlook Graphic Lake Erie 12-Month Outlook Graphic


12-Month Outlook Legend
 
 
*At this time, water level outlooks for Lake Ontario are still under development due to complexities of its weekly regulation process.
 For the official 6-month forecast of all lakes, including Lake Ontario, see the Monthly Bulletin of Great Lakes Water Levels.
 

 

Click here to obtain the full Great Lakes Water Level Future Scenarios document (pdf)

Great Lakes Water Level Future Scenarios Data

Collapse All Expand All

Lake Superior

Monthly Mean Water Level (meters IGLD)

  Nov-22 Dec-22 Jan-23 Feb-23 Mar-23 Apr-23 May-23 Jun-23 Jul-23 Aug-23 Sep-23 Oct-23
Maximum Recent La Nina Years 183.57 183.54 183.46 183.37 183.34 183.38 183.53 183.61 183.71 183.78 183.78 183.78
Minimum Recent La Nina Years 183.50 183.41 183.33 183.25 183.22 183.25 183.29 183.37 183.42 183.41 183.35 183.27
1975-76 183.58 183.55 183.46 183.39 183.38 183.44 183.50 183.54 183.58 183.56 183.47 183.37
2000-01 183.53 183.43 183.33 183.26 183.22 183.34 183.53 183.60 183.62 183.61 183.56 183.49
Long Term Average 183.48 183.41 183.34 183.28 183.24 183.27 183.37 183.45 183.52 183.54 183.54 183.52
Long Term Maximum 183.89 183.81 183.71 183.64 183.61 183.68 183.77 183.84 183.86 183.86 183.86 183.91
Long Term Minimum 183.01 182.92 182.83 182.76 182.74 182.72 182.76 182.85 182.96 183.01 183.02 183.10

 

Lake Michigan-Huron

Monthly Mean Water Level (meters IGLD)

 

  Nov-22 Dec-22 Jan-23 Feb-23 Mar-23 Apr-23 May-23 Jun-23 Jul-23 Aug-23 Sep-23 Oct-23
Maximum Recent La Nina Years 176.58 176.55 176.55 176.57 176.65 176.76 176.88 176.95 176.99 176.97 176.93 176.91
Minimum Recent La Nina Years 176.52 176.45 176.40 176.35 176.38 176.45 176.47 176.50 176.55 176.48 176.35 176.24
1975-76 176.57 176.55 176.51 176.51 176.63 176.77 176.87 176.93 176.93 176.87 176.75 176.61
2000-01 176.54 176.46 176.42 176.42 176.43 176.47 176.58 176.66 176.67 176.63 176.62 176.64
Long Term Average 176.41 176.36 176.32 176.31 176.32 176.41 176.50 176.57 176.60 176.58 176.53 176.46
Long Term Maximum 177.38 177.26 177.26 177.25 177.22 177.30 177.38 177.45 177.46 177.42 177.38 177.50
Long Term Minimum 175.65 175.61 175.57 175.59 175.58 175.61 175.74 175.76 175.78 175.77 175.76 175.70

 

Lake St. Clair

Monthly Mean Water Level (meters IGLD)

 

  Nov-22 Dec-22 Jan-23 Feb-23 Mar-23 Apr-23 May-23 Jun-23 Jul-23 Aug-23 Sep-23 Oct-23
Maximum Recent La Nina Years 175.27 175.34 175.36 175.36 175.48 175.55 175.57 175.58 175.59 175.54 175.54 175.50
Minimum Recent La Nina Years 175.14 175.10 175.07 175.02 175.11 175.09 175.10 175.22 175.19 175.09 175.00 174.95
1975-76 175.16 175.19 175.18 175.31 175.50 175.55 175.58 175.56 175.57 175.48 175.37 175.25
2000-01 175.16 175.14 175.09 175.18 175.18 175.21 175.27 175.31 175.26 175.20 175.15 175.18
Long Term Average 174.94 174.94 174.87 174.82 174.93 175.07 175.15 175.20 175.22 175.18 175.12 175.02
Long Term Maximum 175.82 175.80 175.80 175.80 175.83 175.91 175.98 176.02 176.04 175.97 175.88 175.96
Long Term Minimum 174.18 174.24 173.88 173.89 174.05 174.32 174.42 174.45 174.50 174.41 174.34 174.27

 

Lake Erie

Monthly Mean Water Level (meters IGLD)

 

  Nov-22 Dec-22 Jan-23 Feb-23 Mar-23 Apr-23 May-23 Jun-23 Jul-23 Aug-23 Sep-23 Oct-23
Maximum Recent La Nina Years 174.35 174.49 174.60 174.59 174.66 174.77 174.78 174.76 174.78 174.68 174.63 174.59
Minimum Recent La Nina Years 174.22 174.19 174.20 174.22 174.19 174.23 174.27 174.33 174.35 174.28 174.19 174.13
1975-76 174.27 174.32 174.38 174.51 174.72 174.81 174.80 174.78 174.74 174.64 174.53 174.43
2000-01 174.25 174.22 174.20 174.25 174.34 174.41 174.46 174.47 174.41 174.32 174.23 174.20
Long Term Average 174.02 174.02 174.02 174.02 174.10 174.25 174.33 174.36 174.35 174.28 174.19 174.09
Long Term Maximum 174.85 174.89 174.86 174.90 174.95 175.05 175.08 175.14 175.13 175.02 174.87 174.94
Long Term Minimum 173.20 173.19 173.21 173.18 173.20 173.38 173.44 173.45 173.45 173.43 173.38 173.30

 

Lake Superior

Monthly Mean Water Level (ft IGLD)

  Nov-22 Dec-22 Jan-23 Feb-23 Mar-23 Apr-23 May-23 Jun-23 Jul-23 Aug-23 Sep-23 Oct-23
Maximum Recent La Nina Years 602.25 602.18 601.91 601.61 601.51 601.65 602.13 602.40 602.73 602.94 602.96 602.94
Minimum Recent La Nina Years 602.04 601.75 601.46 601.20 601.11 601.22 601.33 601.62 601.78 601.73 601.54 601.27
1975-76 602.30 602.19 601.89 601.68 601.64 601.85 602.04 602.18 602.31 602.22 601.95 601.62
2000-01 602.14 601.80 601.46 601.26 601.11 601.51 602.13 602.35 602.43 602.40 602.24 602.01
Long Term Average 601.97 601.74 601.51 601.31 601.18 601.28 601.61 601.87 602.10 602.17 602.17 602.10
Long Term Maximum 603.31 603.05 602.72 602.49 602.40 602.62 602.92 603.15 603.22 603.22 603.22 603.38
Long Term Minimum 600.43 600.13 599.84 599.61 599.54 599.48 599.61 599.90 600.26 600.43 600.46 600.72

 

Lake Michigan-Huron

Monthly Mean Water Level (ft IGLD)

 

  Nov-22 Dec-22 Jan-23 Feb-23 Mar-23 Apr-23 May-23 Jun-23 Jul-23 Aug-23 Sep-23 Oct-23
Maximum Recent La Nina Years 579.33 579.22 579.25 579.31 579.56 579.93 580.30 580.56 580.67 580.62 580.48 580.42
Minimum Recent La Nina Years 579.14 578.91 578.74 578.57 578.66 578.90 578.96 579.07 579.24 579.00 578.58 578.21
1975-76 579.31 579.24 579.10 579.10 579.49 579.96 580.28 580.47 580.48 580.27 579.88 579.42
2000-01 579.19 578.94 578.79 578.81 578.83 578.96 579.32 579.61 579.63 579.51 579.46 579.51
Long Term Average 578.77 578.61 578.48 578.44 578.48 578.77 579.07 579.30 579.40 579.33 579.17 578.94
Long Term Maximum 581.96 581.56 581.56 581.53 581.43 581.69 581.96 582.19 582.22 582.09 581.96 582.35
Long Term Minimum 576.28 576.15 576.02 576.08 576.05 576.15 576.57 576.64 576.71 576.67 576.64 576.44

 

Lake St. Clair

Monthly Mean Water Level (ft IGLD)

 

  Nov-22 Dec-22 Jan-23 Feb-23 Mar-23 Apr-23 May-23 Jun-23 Jul-23 Aug-23 Sep-23 Oct-23
Maximum Recent La Nina Years 575.02 575.27 575.34 575.31 575.73 575.95 576.01 576.05 576.09 575.90 575.90 575.79
Minimum Recent La Nina Years 574.60 574.49 574.39 574.21 574.51 574.46 574.48 574.86 574.78 574.44 574.15 573.97
1975-76 574.68 574.78 574.73 575.16 575.79 575.96 576.05 576.00 576.03 575.73 575.35 574.98
2000-01 574.66 574.60 574.44 574.74 574.75 574.85 575.02 575.16 575.00 574.79 574.64 574.73
Long Term Average 573.95 573.95 573.72 573.56 573.92 574.38 574.64 574.80 574.87 574.74 574.54 574.21
Long Term Maximum 576.84 576.77 576.77 576.77 576.87 577.13 577.36 577.49 577.56 577.33 577.03 577.30
Long Term Minimum 571.46 571.65 570.47 570.51 571.03 571.92 572.24 572.34 572.51 572.21 571.98 571.75

 

Lake Erie

Monthly Mean Water Level (ft IGLD)

 

  Nov-22 Dec-22 Jan-23 Feb-23 Mar-23 Apr-23 May-23 Jun-23 Jul-23 Aug-23 Sep-23 Oct-23
Maximum Recent La Nina Years 572.00 572.48 572.83 572.81 573.04 573.40 573.43 573.37 573.44 573.11 572.95 572.79
Minimum Recent La Nina Years 571.59 571.48 571.52 571.59 571.49 571.62 571.74 571.93 572.03 571.78 571.50 571.29
1975-76 571.75 571.92 572.12 572.54 573.22 573.52 573.49 573.42 573.29 572.98 572.61 572.26
2000-01 571.69 571.60 571.52 571.68 571.99 572.20 572.38 572.40 572.20 571.90 571.61 571.52
Long Term Average 570.93 570.93 570.93 570.93 571.19 571.69 571.95 572.05 572.01 571.78 571.49 571.16
Long Term Maximum 573.65 573.79 573.69 573.82 573.98 574.31 574.41 574.61 574.57 574.21 573.72 573.95
Long Term Minimum 568.24 568.21 568.27 568.18 568.24 568.83 569.03 569.06 569.06 569.00 568.83 568.57

 

Detroit District Disclaimer

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 Construction Division, Hydraulics and Hydrology Branch, 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.