Rain Today – Weather History

We have a few light rain showers moving through this morning and that will be the theme for today.  Clouds and possibly some drizzle could linger tonight.  Rainfall totals could be a quarter to half an inch through tonight.   The sun will return on Thursday leading to a warming trend. Warm conditions are predicted for Friday with some stronger storms possible.

Our high temp for yesterday was 67° and the low was 44° with mostly sunny skies. 

Scattered thunderstorms could develop between late Thursday night and late Friday night. Any storms that develop may produce damaging wind gusts or large hail. Keep up to date on the latest forecasts over the next couple of days.

Weather History for SW Michigan

May 15

1855: A tornado destroys at least one building as it moves from Jackson to Washtenaw County.

1972: A tornado caused minor damage north of Potterville in Eaton County.

May 16

1997: Record low temperatures are set at Grand Rapids and Muskegon with both falling to 29 degrees. This will go in the record books as the coldest May on record at Grand Rapids.

May 17

1962: An early-season heatwave sends temperatures into the upper 80s and lower 90s across Lower Michigan. Record highs on this date include the 91 at Grand Rapids, 89 at Lansing and 88 at Muskegon.

May 18

1915: Lansing records their latest measurable snow on record with 0.4 inches, and Grand Rapids also does, with 0.2 inches there.

May 19

1923: A tornado injured two people in Kent County as it moved through rural areas from east of Coopersville to near Sparta.

2002: Snowflakes fly across Lower Michigan as record cold weather prevails. Record lows include the 26 degrees at Lansing, 29 at Muskegon and 30 at Grand Rapids. The freezing temperatures cause heavy losses to orchards across western Lower Michigan.

May 20

1975: A tornado injured one person as it destroyed two mobile homes at Byron Center in Kent County.

1977: The last half of May is unusually warm. Record high temperatures in the upper 80s and lower 90s are set across Lower Michigan from the 16th to the 28th. This helps make it the warmest May on record at Grand Rapids.

May 21

2001: A swarm of at least 20 tornadoes descends on Lower Michigan. Fortunately, most of the tornadoes are relatively weak and only five people were injured. Damage included dozens of trees downed, barns were blown over and roof and siding damage to several homes. Three homes and a golf course were heavily damaged north of Hartland in Livingston County.

2004: Severe weather causes widespread damage across southern Lower Michigan. Thunderstorm winds up to 70 mph, large hail and flash flooding occurred as a squall line moved from Benton Harbor to Ann Arbor. Hundreds of trees are knocked down and thousands lose power.

Weather History for SE Michigan

May 15

On May 15, 1942, Flint was in the middle of a hot streak from the 14th-18th when high temperatures ranged from 91-93 degrees.

Also on May 15, 2007, there were 40 severe wind and hail reports across Southeast Michigan including tennis ball size hail in Bad Axe and a measured 74 mph wind gust in Howell.

May 16

On May 16th, 1974, an F1 tornado hit Sanilac County at 11:30 PM.

Three years later on May 16th, 1977 in Detroit, the temperature rose 49 degrees from a morning low of 40 to an afternoon high of 89.

May 17

On May 17, 1999, a thunderstorm bringing winds of 58 mph swept through Northville at 6:15 pm causing 2 thousand dollars in damages. Also on this date in 1999, winds of 60 mph occurred with storms passing through Oakley at 5:00 pm causing 5 thousand dollars in damages and through Saginaw at 5:22 pm causing $3,000 in damages.

May 18

On May 18, 2017, a record high low temperature of 68 degrees was set at Flint, breaking the old record of 62 degrees from 2015.

On May 18, 1962, the temperature rose to 93 degrees in Detroit, which is the record high for the day. This marked the fifth day in a row (May 14-18) that record daily highs were set in Detroit!

May 19

On May 19, 2020, after several days of heavy rainfall beginning on the 17th, the Edenville Dam in Midland County failed and prompted the issuance of rare Flash Flood Emergencies for areas downstream. 7 to 8 inches of rain had fallen over the Tittabawassee River basin to the north, estimated to be a 200-year flood event. The dam failure caused the Sanford Dam downstream to fail as well, sending a wave of floodwater toward the city of Midland. Approximately 10,000 people were evacuated and the Tittabawassee River crested at a record 35.05 feet in Midland. This historic flooding caused extensive damage around downtown Midland and the village of Sanford, though thankfully no injuries or deaths were reported.

On May 19, 1983, F2 tornado hit Macomb County at 6:27 PM causing $25,000 in property damage.

May 20

On May 20, 1996, lightning within a thunderstorm that went through Richfield Township at 2:53 pm caused one injury.

May 21

On May 21, 1953, an F4 tornado moved through St. Clair County at 4:21 PM. This tornado is responsible for 2 deaths and 68 injuries. It ties with an F4 tornado that formed on June 8, 1953, as the strongest tornado ever to hit St. Clair County.

Also on May 21, 2001, an F2 tornado hit Hartland and dissipated near Fenton. Other weak tornadoes hit Oakland, Lapeer, Shiawassee, and Saginaw Counties.


Forecast Discussion

-- Rain and Cool Temperatures Today --

Despite a pretty disorganized arrangement of waves between the low
level and upper levels, rain becomes increasingly likely by midday
as frontogenesis at 850-700 mb occurs overhead, to the north of a
weak surface low and warm front over northern Illinois-Indiana. The
presence of dry low-level air prior at the onset of rain, light east
winds, and thickening clouds should hold temperatures in the 50s. A
brief shot of 60s in southern Michigan is possible, but this could
be held back if more rain occurs there.

Members of the HREF continue to exhibit quite the variability in
where the west-east swath of heaviest rain will fall (over a half-
inch), and what the upper limit of rainfall is (locally an inch?).
The blended approach would place the best opportunity for soaking
rain amounts near or just north of I-96. Would expect there to be
overachievers and underachievers with rainfall today... thankful
this isn`t a snow forecast. Light rain falling from mid-level cloud
bases this morning should become heavier with decreasing cloud bases
from midday to late afternoon, then transitioning to drizzle to
close out the day as the ice-bearing clouds above 700 mb peel away.

-- Thunderstorm Chances Centered On Friday --

A deepening trough in the intermountain west, a building ridge over
the northeast US and eastern Canada, and increasing southwesterly
flow over the central US and Great Lakes will send our temperatures
back into the 70s on Thursday and possibly 80s on Friday. A
significant positively tilted upper level trough from Hudson Bay to
the northern Plains and Colorado Rockies will be in place on Friday,
while a surface low consolidates over Minnesota/Lake Superior and
propagates northeast. A cold front draped southwest of the low
toward Texas will be sliding southeast into Lower Michigan at some
point on Friday, possibly stalling out on Saturday. A stout
elevated mixed layer of southern high plains origins (from diurnal
mixing in Colorado, New Mexico, and West Texas on Thursday) will
advect over at least a portion of Lower Michigan on Friday,
contributing to moderate or strong instability with 1500-3000 J/kg
MLCAPE during the day and MUCAPE about 1500-2000 J/kg at night.
Interestingly this EML could contain smoke from New Mexico`s
historic wildfires, but this probably wouldn`t impact the forecast
here much compared the more meaningful uncertainty factors
mentioned below. Strong southwesterly winds in the low levels on
Friday could mix down during the day in the warm sector, getting
close to wind advisory levels here.

While the potential for severe winds and hail is there given the
amount of CAPE, strong wind fields, and 0-3 km shear, there remain
several limiting factors or unanswered questions. The first
unanswered question is how much elevated convection may try to move
into Lower Michigan with the warm front late Thursday night. Right
now the threat appears low but not zero, but it may not impact the
Friday afternoon/night chances too much anyway. Next has been the
question of the synoptic ridge amplitude and length between the
trough and ridge. The GFS and the majority of its ensemble members
yesterday was more subdued with the amplitude of the ridge, keeping
the EML farther southeast compared to the ECMWF and its ensemble
members, with an arrival of the cold front earlier in the day. The
00Z run of the GFS ensembles may be backing away from that idea,
given the increase in high temperature and CAPE for Friday. One of
the greatest limiting factors for thunderstorms on Friday may be the
magnitude of the cap. It`s possible the cap may not erode enough
until late Friday night, at which point the surface cold front may
undercut the warm, moist, and still potentially unstable mid-level
air. This scenario would be good for diminishing the threat of
damaging winds, though large hail would remain possible. If storms
do develop during the day Friday, the orientation of the
surface front parallel to the deep-layer flow and shear vector could
result in a line of storms with limited forward propagation,
undercut by their cold pool, which would keep strong winds confined
to narrower corridors. So, bottom line, it could be a blustery
Friday even without storms, but any that develop could produce
isolated to scattered severe wind and/or hail.

-- The Weekend into Next Week --

There is increasing model ensemble support for the cold front to
stall just southeast of the area on Saturday, then with a
developing wave moving northeast along the front, redeveloping
rain and embedded thunderstorms could affect portions of Lower
Michigan. This could be more of a heavy rain producer.

Cooler than normal temperatures and surface high pressure are
likely Sunday and Monday. The next upper level trough and
developing low pressure system are possible in the region
midweek, with moderate clustering among the ensembles for rain at
some point between late Tuesday and Thursday.

 

 

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Rocky (Rockford)
Rocky (Rockford)

Get ready for more lousy weather!

Rocky (Rockford)
Rocky (Rockford)

Get ready for the pending cold snap! It starts Saturday and lasts for multiple days! Very cold nights are in your future!

Mark (East Lansing)
Mark (East Lansing)

From this afternoon’s Forecast Discussion regarding Friday:

“As it stands now, the primary threat area in our CWA looks to be south of a Muskegon to Mount Pleasant line, but we are not ruling out any area just yet. I-96 and south in the afternoon and evening will likely be the target area. Confidence will increase over the next 24 hours as the event comes more into the CAM window.”

Mookie
Mookie

Parts of Lower Michigan might hit 90+ again on Friday! Today’s CPC also trending back to above average temps. I love it!

Slim

Looks to have mostly ended. Here at my house I recorded 0.25″ of total rain fall. At this time it is cloudy and a damp 54.
Slim

Rocky (Rockford)
Rocky (Rockford)

Another lousy spring day. Cold and wet!

Slim

The mean temperature at Grand Rapids is currently at 36.9° the 30 year average as of this date should be 38.3° so at this point of the year Grand Rapids is -1.4° below average for the year so far. So far there has been 15.39″ of rain and melted snow fall this year the average as of yesterday is 13.23 so the year so far is +2.16″
Slim

Rocky (Rockford)
Rocky (Rockford)

Who would have thought?

Barry in Zeeland
Barry in Zeeland

Looks like the rain is done already. I guess a couple tenths is better than zero tenths.

Mr. Negative
Mr. Negative

Sadly, a cold, “throw away” year is on tap. Accidental “warming” now and then, with an immediate reversion to cold. Oh well, maybe next year.

Slim

Rain is falling and the current temperature is 52 in the area.
Slim

INDY
INDY

Cool cloudy wet May day currently….InDY

Kyle (Portland, Ionia County)
Kyle (Portland, Ionia County)

We are fast approaching two of the best months of the year, June and July! I love summertime in West Mi, everything from going to the beaches, grilling out, big thunderstorms rolling through, Cant beat it! What is your favorite beach in West Michigan? I’ve got tons of beaches I like its hard to pick a favorite. The most common place we go is Holland State Park beach but Mountain Beach near Port Sheldon is a little hidden gem that sits off the beaten path on a dead end road. Also, if you are looking for nice walking trails through… Read more »

Nathan (Forest Hills)
Nathan (Forest Hills)

I also love August… especially the first half with the Perseids and the mid/late summer feel. But I have to agree that June and July are slightly better with the longer daylight. All 3 months are good for severe storms in MI.
Also I need to go to the beach more often this summer… I’ll probably try exporing a few different ones and see which is best.

Slim

I really like the weather in Michigan from now (mid late May) to late September early October. Here in Michigan the weather in that time is nice for the most part we have mild to warm and yes sometimes hot days. After starting in October there is little sunshine and of course it gets colder and colder and than there is the snow. From November/December until April that is when Florida has great weather but for some reason I just stay here.
Slim

Barry in Zeeland
Barry in Zeeland

Hope we get more rain than the few spits and sprinkles so far. Farmers tilled and planted our field yesterday and it was a dust bowl, couldn’t even see the tractors with all the dust being kicked up. Incredibly dry after all the sun and heat the past couple weeks. We are now at less than 50% of our average May rainfall.

Nathan (Forest Hills)
Nathan (Forest Hills)

Pretty incredible change from April. The high sun angle and 80 degree temps can dry things out fast.

Kyle (Portland, Ionia County)
Kyle (Portland, Ionia County)

Yes I make deliveries across Allegan County and driving the dirt roads is a big time dust bowl. Good thing we are getting some needed rain.

Rocky (Rockford)
Rocky (Rockford)

It sounds like a good time to review the facts!
1. 2022 is well below normal for temps!
2. The first week of May was below normal!
3. Today will be wet and well below normal!
4. This weekend will be cold and the low temps may dip into the 30’s! Incredible cold!
5. The overall pattern is still trending with below normal temps!
6. Winter is by far the best season in West MI!
7. Rock n roll will never die!
8. The Detroit Lions are the worst pro sports franchise ever!
9. Mv’s blog rocks!

Mark (East Lansing)
Mark (East Lansing)

10. 2021 tied for the sixth hottest year on record, globally. All of the seven hottest years on record have happened in the last seven years.

Rocky (Rockford)
Rocky (Rockford)

Then I am glad 2022 is cold!

Mark (East Lansing)
Mark (East Lansing)
Rocky (Rockford)
Rocky (Rockford)

No doubt about global warming, yet one political party is in total denial and won’t do a dam thing to help!

Mark (East Lansing)
Mark (East Lansing)

“On May 21, 1953, an F4 tornado moved through St. Clair County at 4:21 PM. This tornado is responsible for 2 deaths and 68 injuries. It ties with an F4 tornado that formed on June 8, 1953, as the strongest tornado ever to hit St. Clair County.”

Two F4s in St. Clair County just 18 days apart? Yikes.

Slim

The official H/L at Grand Rapids yesterday was 67/46. With a departure of -3.1 that brought a end to the 8 days in a row of above average days at Grand Rapids. The overnight low both here at my house and at GRR was 45. When the clouds moved in it did warm up it 50 and with the rain now started it is at 49. So far here at my house I have recorded 0.06″ of rain fall. It still looks like a brief warm up on Friday with some storm chances and then down to below average for… Read more »

Mark (East Lansing)
Mark (East Lansing)

It’s going to be ten degrees below average today. It’s been nearly 20 degrees above average lately. My point is that it will feel chilly today.

We received some rain over the weekend but my lawn could use some more. My lawn is perfect right now and I just don’t want to use the irrigation system yet.

Slim

I work out side and even yesterday it felt cool later in the day.
Slim