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"...the Great Lakes freezing over as they haven't done since records began."


Currently at 88% ice cover, and short of the 1994 figure of 90.7%, according to te abc story linked above.


Warm rivers play role in Arctic sea ice melt

The heat from warm river waters draining into the Arctic Ocean is contributing to the melting of Arctic sea ice each summer, a new NASA study finds.



Sorry pour la confusion, idunno. That was lazy linking in my part. The ABC article is actually a correction of a Feb 14 article.

I now link to this from AccuWeather:

With an end in sight, the winter of 2014 rages on, ushering in frigid arctic air and dumping record-breaking snow and ice on much of the nation. This season, ice coverage on the Great Lakes has exceeded all other measurements since 1979.

"By a long shot, this is the most ice we've had on Lake Superior in 20 years," Associate Professor at the Large Lakes Observatory in Duluth, Minn., Jay Austin said.

During a typical winter, 30 to 40 percent of the Great Lakes are covered by ice, according to AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Brett Anderson.

Usually arctic air swept over the Great Lakes creates lake-effect snow but modifies the air, making it warmer. This typically makes regions from Ohio through the Northeast a little warmer than it otherwise would be.

However, this winter 80 to 90 percent of the Great Lakes are covered in ice. As of Wednesday, March 5, 2014, the total Great Lakes basin was 91 percent covered, ranking the Great Lakes ice coverage this winter second in the overall rankings, according to Physical Scientist with the NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory.


Strangely enough, the Accuweather article says this:

As of Wednesday, March 5, 2014, the total Great Lakes basin was 91 percent covered, ranking the Great Lakes ice coverage this winter second in the overall rankings

But then goes on to say this:

The last time in recent history the ice coverage was even close to this winter's percentage was the winter of 1993-1994. That winter ice coverage was measured at 90.7 percent.

Either way, I watched that bar graph from the Canadian Ice Service and then assumed that ice coverage this winter has been the highest on record.

First, second, whatever, it disproves AGW. ;-)


"First, second, whatever, it disproves AGW. ;-)"

It's CUSAFF (Catastrophic US Anthropogenic F Freezing)

Another nail prised from the coffin of the lamented Dr Inferno...



As a big picture guy I see it like this:

AGW means more heat coming in than going out.
Most of this extra heat is outside the arctic.
Heat always moves from hot to cold.
Melting arctic ice is a measure of how fast this heat moves from hot to cold.
This happens primarily through winds and currents.
Cold coming down from the arctic is heat moving into the arctic.
Record cold temperatures in the temperate zone means record heat transported into the arctic.


Completely irrelevent, untrue, gratuitous, and possibly libelous ad-hominem (mods,please delete)...


...apart from the nice bits.



The Canadian Ice Service graph is an annual "week of graph". Earlier years highest percentage ice cover occurred in late January or early February. And remember these "records" are only from the satellite period, although this winter is definitely in the coldest 5% to 20% of the weather records period,throughout the lakes region.


The Canadian Ice Service graph is an annual "week of graph".

You're right! I overlooked that.


""By a long shot, this is the most ice we've had on Lake Superior in 20 years," Associate Professor at the Large Lakes Observatory in Duluth, Minn., Jay Austin said."
That is in the last 20 years. I highly suspect (although I am finding it hard to know where to get such data) that in the historical records that used to be very common.
Another big factor should be taken into consideration is the thickness. I live and work in the Toronto, Canada region. In Toronto harbour, it used to be common for people to skate on the ice in the winter time there. Even this year that would be a danger, because that ice really is not that thick as compared to pre 1990's.
It also should not be forgotten that the ice extent in the Arctic itself could reach a Maximum that could be near a record low.
As for the Antarctic. That as many factors involved, and you go back to thickness. If you include all the glaciers on land, by all reports, things are not in very good shape there either.

Kevin McKinney

When I was a kid in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, everyone paid attention to the ice in Lake Superior since it really modulated snowfall and temperature quite a bit. Some winters saw relatively complete freezes, some not. But the trend has been pretty dramatic--though this year's anomaly certainly is, too:


The atlas above doesn't go quite that far back, but may interest some.


Yet, if you look at the entire pan-arctic area it was , so far , a very warm winter. So we hear, "Arctic Blast" freezing the Great Lakes solid, but a closer look reveals the culprit, the continents which are historically unchanged, while the Arctic has its carpet pulled from under its feet.... http://eh2r.blogspot.ca/


This winter's sea ice area maximum seems to have stayed below the minimal winter maximum so far. Also, the areas where the ice is "under attack" seem to be not just the periphery but rather the ice in the Svalbard and Bering areas. Or am I misreading this, and this situation is more common than I think and doesn't point to a new minimum in September?


As you have said, the Canadian Ice Service graph that I posted shows the ice cover for this week.
Looking at the "Total accumulated ice coverage" graph, this winter is the second highest (the highest is 1993/94): http://diablobanquisa.files.wordpress.com/2014/03/20140303180000_cvchactgl_0007547821.gif


By the way, thanks for your words Neven, but I'm far from being an 'expert', just an amateur.

Climate Changes

Hola Diablo. Aqui un paisano :)

There is no much diference between experts and amateurs with regards to GW and what it entails since it is all new territory. Experts and amateurs alike have to deal with new data that is no longer the 'norm'.

Experts make studies on the field they are, well, experts at, but amateurs tend to read and analize studies from a varied range of fields/disciplines to get a better overall picture of what's going on. Keep the good work.


I grew up on the southern shore of Lake Superior. This winter was very much like what it was like when I was a kid back in the 70s. I'm grateful of this year's freeze-over -- it'll keep things cool this summer and maybe we won't have to run the air conditioner.

But I couldn't help thinking that it was like the lifeblood of the arctic spilling over us.


Lake ice peaked (hopefully) at 92.2% coverage, 2.5% below the Feb. 19, 1979 record of 94.7%.


Lake ice peaked (hopefully) at 92.2% coverage on March 6, 2014.


Well into the slide show, the photo of the large hill ~5 mi (8km) north of Unalakleet on the western coast of the Bering’s Norton Sound is interesting if you read that photo’s caption and take a look at the northern Norton Sound area on U Bremen’s ASMER2 chart. From considerably south of Unalakleet (63°52N -160°47′W), to the NE corner of Norton Sound and then extending well west beyond Nome (64°30′N - 165°23′W) there appears to be little ice.

Virtually always, the Iditarod's route is on the anchored near shore ice that seems to be absent this year. The land mask for charts from satellites instruments (and ASMER2 uses the highest pixel resolution I believe) excludes most shore fast ice as land, so there's little notice of this very unusual condition. At least without paws literally on the ground instead of the sea ice.



Lake Michigan-Huron is now ice free. http://www.glerl.noaa.gov/res/glcfs/kml/glcfsmap.php?lake=a&param=glsea&time=now


Just to close out this thread. Lake Superior was ice free on June 7, 2014. One small area of ice north of Ironwood, MI was all that remained on June 6. A ski area web cam still shows one small patch of snow on the Keweenaw Peninsula.


Thanks a lot for the info, Carex.

tom barnes

Nice article :) for a very high resolution satellite imagery site visit my favorite site

[Link removed. Mail me if you're not a spambot. N.]

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