For the first time since 2009, West Grand Traverse Bay has iced over, marking the third such occurrence in the last decade. On Monday, February 3rd, blue skies and the newly frozen waters drew Northern Michigan fishermen to the ice in droves, and MyNorth’s Kris Riley was there to capture the long-lost sunshine and persistent anglers on video.
How will a frozen West Bay affect local weather patterns around the Grand Traverse area? 9&10 and Fox 32 News’ Chief Meteorologist Tom O’Hare explains that temperatures should drop considerably, as the relatively warm bay water is now covered by a layer of insulating ice. Says O’Hare, “If another Arctic outbreak occurs, the weather will be colder since the water helped to keep the temperatures up by producing Lake Effect clouds.” But it’s not all bad news: a frozen bay means fewer Lake Effect clouds, which will lead to less snowfall and more sunshine.