A Damp Fall Season for North Shore of Lake Superior
Posted on: October 15, 2018
Wet and colourful Fall for northwestern Ontario. (Photo: Ruby Reid-Sharp)


Severe Weather on North Shore of Lake Superior

Most northern communities along the Shores of Lake Superior have observed a very rainy Fall season this year. Lake Superior water levels were up 4 cm from average by the end of September, a month where Lake Superior normally begins its seasonal decline. Wet weather carried over from September into the first two weeks of October. A quick google news search reveals that severe weather that resulted in high wind speeds, tall waves and extensive rainfall was reported October 3rd in Sault St Marie ON and Northland MI, October 10th in Thunder Bay ON and Duluth and Grand Marais MI, and October 11th in Wawa ON. The wet weather has also impeded efforts to transport Grey wolves to Isle Royale for a wolf relocation program meant to repopulate the Isle Royale.


A view of Lake Superior from Thunder Bay October 10. White Caps Were Visible past the Breakwater. (Photo: Ruby Reid-Sharp)


One Way That Climate Change Manifests on Lake Superior

A recent article published in the Journal of Geophysical Research Biogeosciences has thoroughly studied how severe weather has impacted and may be expected to continue impacting Lake Superior. The researchers attribute the increased regularity of extreme storms to Climate Change and expect the trend to continue.


Wet leafs leave ghostly imprints when blown away by windy weather during the first week of October in Thunder Bay. (Photo: Ruby Reid-Sharp)

Increased severe weather is one example of how Climate Change is impacting and interacting with Lake Superior. The temperature of Lake Superior has also been steadily rising. A 2013 Study on Climate Change and Lake Superior fish habitats found that increased temperature would benefit some species while harming others, which could create greater competition between the positively affected populations. The higher temperatures, they suggested, could also make Lake Superior more viable for some invasive species.