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Weekly Forecast

ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS WEEKLY GREAT LAKES WATER LEVEL UPDATE

Nov 15, 2019

 

WEATHER CONDITIONS

Record-low temperatures and record-high snow totals characterized the weather in the Great Lakes region over the past week. At the start of last weekend, temperatures were generally 15 degrees below average, but had actually become moderate by Sunday. However, starting on Monday, temperatures plummeted throughout the basin, dropping to more than 20 degrees below average by Wednesday. Chicago’s high temperature on Tuesday was over 30 degrees below its normal daily high and the cities of South Bend, IN, and Detroit, MI, experienced daily low temperatures of 6 and 7 degrees, respectively, that day. Also on Monday, major snowfall occurred on and around Lakes Michigan-Huron, Erie, and Ontario, with cities like Flint, MI, and Rochester, NY receiving over 8 inches of snow. This weekend, temperatures are expected to remain around 10 degrees below average in most of the Great Lakes Basin, but the northern portion of the basin will see temperatures closer to average. Also, areas surrounding Lake Erie and Ontario could see temperatures around 15-20 degrees below average on Saturday. In general, precipitation is not expected to be significant this weekend and in the early workweek.

LAKE LEVEL CONDITIONS

Lake Superior’s projected water level for November 15th is 4 inches below its level of a month ago, while Lake Michigan-Huron is at the same level it was a month ago. In addition, the forecasted November 15th levels of Lakes St. Clair and Erie are 1 to 2 inches below what the lakes’ were a month ago, but Lake Ontario is expected to be 2 inches above what it was. The predicted November 15th levels for all of the lakes are below their respective November record high monthly average levels by a range of 4 to 7 inches. Also, Lakes Superior and Erie are 1 and 4 inches, respectively, above their levels of a year ago, while Lakes Superior, St. Clair, and Ontario are 9 to 17 inches above last year’s levels. A month from now, all the Lakes are expected to be 3 to 4 inches below their current projected levels.   See our Daily Levels web page for more water level information.

FORECASTED MONTHLY OUTFLOWS/CHANNEL CONDITIONS

Outflows from Lake Superior into the St. Mary’s River and Lake Michigan-Huron’s outflow into the St. Clair River are predicted to be above average for November. Lake St. Clair’s outflow through the Detroit River and Lake Erie’s outflow through the Niagara River are also forecasted to be above average in November. In addition, Lake Ontario’s outflow through the St. Lawrence River is projected to be above average for November.

ALERTS

Water levels shown are still-water surface elevations over the entire lake surface. Water levels at specific locations may differ substantially due to meteorological influences. 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. High water levels and potentially record high water levels are expected to persist for at least the next six months, so flood prone areas are expected to remain vulnerable.

SUPERIOR

MICH-HURON

ST. CLAIR

ERIE

ONTARIO

Forecasted Water Level for Nov 15, 2019 (feet)

602.99

581.59

576.48

573.10

246.26

Chart Datum (feet)

601.10

577.50

572.30

569.20

243.30

Difference from chart datum (inches)

+23

+49

+50

+47

+36

Difference from average water level for Oct 15, 2019 (inches*)

-4

0

-1

-2

+2

Difference from average water level for Nov 15, 2018 (inches*)

+1

+16

+9

+4

+17

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

+13

+35

+31

+26

+20

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

-4

-4

-4

-7

-5

Year of highest recorded monthly mean

1985

1986

1986

1986

1945

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

+31

+64

+60

+58

+52

Year of lowest recorded monthly mean

1925

1964

1934

1934

1934

Projected net change in levels by Dec 15, 2019 (inches)

-3

-3

-3

-3

-4

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, 1918-2018

FORECASTED INFORMATION PROVIDED BY

RECORDED DATA (1918 – present)

FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT

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Detroit District Great Lakes Homepage

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Weekly Great Lakes Water Levels

We do not have the ability to offer email updates at this time.  The Weekly Forecast of Great Lakes Water Levels is updated each week on Thursday afternoon or Friday morning depending on data availability.

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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.