Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Lake Erie Ice Cover Update

High resolution image of Lake Erie, January 16,2023

I finally updated the daily Lake Erie ice coverage charts for each season since 1972. I separated this into month periods starting with November and ending with May.  This is all color coded. 

  • Light blue blocks indicates ice coverage under 1%
  • Bright blue is 2% to 10%
  • Dark Blue is 11% to 25%
  • Purple is 26% to 50%
  • Pink is 51% to 74%
  • White indicates at least 75% coverage

You'll notice several things here:
  1. Significant ice typically doesn't develop until late December.
  2. Mid/late 1970s AND the early 2000s stand out as the most significant ice coverage period in  January and early Februar
  3. First half of February is typically the peak for ice coverage
  4. November 23, 2014 was the earliest ice cover
  5. May 17, 1982 was the latest ice cover 

Back in 2021 and 2022, I did some research on the conditions needed for rapid ice development.  Links are  HERE  and  HERE







Number of days with ice coverage 90% or higher:

Number of days with ice coverage 10% or higher (since 2010-11)

All Lake Erie ice data from THIS SITE BACK TO 1972

Graph comparing this year (2022-23) to years past

Canadian ice service for more historical perspective

Max ice coverage each winter