Lake Michigan Ice Continues to Expand

Ice on the Great Lakes, including Lake Michigan, continues to develop and expand. In fact, the long period of extreme cold this winter has produced a higher-than-average amount of ice on the lakes.

Here's the high-resolution satellite image of Lake Michigan and surrounding land from January 28:

Lake Michigan satellite image - Click for larger view
Image from NOAA's Aqua polar orbiting satellite. Image data collected by Univ. of Wisconsin SSEC. Click image for larger view.

Can Lake Michigan ice over? While Lake Michigan has almost iced over a few times in the last 50 years (as recently as February 1994), it is unlikely that is has ever been completely covered by ice in recent history. The latest analysis indicates that about 43% of the lake is covered by ice, which is above the long-term average.

Lake Michigan ice concentration - Click for larger view
Lake Michigan ice concentration on January 28, 2014. Click image for larger view.

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