Lake Effect Snow Event Summary

Heavy lake effect snow began Sunday, December 5th and continued into Wednesday, December 8th. More than a foot of snow piled up along the Lake Michigan shore near Muskegon south to Holland and Saugatuck. Some places in western Ottawa and Allegan Counties saw close to two feet of snow. Perhaps the most remarkable aspect of this event was the very persistent north-northwest wind direction during the three day period from Sunday to Tuesday. This resulted in a nearly stationary snow band and a very sharp snowfall gradient across western Ottawa and central Allegan County, as shown in the map below.

This map shows radar-estimated snowfall totals from Sunday, December 5th through Wednesday morning, December 8th. The yellow colors represent areas where generally over a foot of snow fell. The blue colors are areas that received less than three inches of snow. Notice the very sharp gradient from Hudsonville to Holland in Ottawa County and Hopkins and Fennville in Allegan County.


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