WEST MICHIGAN- "The Gales of November" is a phrase often thrown around at this time of year, and for good reason. This is the transitional period of the year when storm systems have a tendency to strengthen due to the large contrast of mild and cold air. The Armistice Day storm of 1940 and the storm that sunk the Edmund Fitzgerald 40 years ago are two of the powerful storms that come to mind.
Today's high temperature occurred at midnight, which was in the mid 50s. Temps will slowly fall throughout the day as the front passes and the winds shift. Showers will last off and on throughout the day. Our main concern will be extremely windy conditions not only overnight, but continuing through Friday morning as well. This will almost certainly cause some issues with power outages and downed tree limbs. CLICK HERE FOR THE CONSUMERS ENERGY OUTAGE MAP.
Winds switch to the SW as the front passes through, and the winds continue to roar at 25-35 mph consistently, with gusts over 50 at times. At this time, the waves along Lake Michigan continue to grow.
By Thursday afternoon, winds switch to the west and become their strongest. Sustained winds near 40 mph will possibly gust up to 60 mph at times along the immediate lakeshore. Scattered rain showers will also continue at this time, with wind chill values in the 30s, as air temperatures drop into the middle 40s by afternoon.
With strong winds come large waves, and we'll see plenty of that through Friday morning. Generally, waves will range from 10-15 feet, with the potential to see peak wind gusts near 20 feet at some point Thursday afternoon!
As a result, the National Weather Service has issued several warnings and advisories for our area. As of Thursday morning, a High Wind Warning, Lakeshore Flood Warning, and a Wind Advisory is in effect for much of our area. Strong wind gusts will create storm surge and beach erosion with lake levels above normal.
As of 7:00 A.M., wind speeds already nearing 50 mph along the lakeshore, with peak wind gusts expected to top 60 mph by afternoon in many areas.
As this system exits, it will drag down colder air behind it. A rain/snow mix is expected for Friday as temperatures barely make it into the 40s. Accumulation is not expected in most areas, however, the typical grassy and metallic surfaces that cool off quicker than the pavement may receive a quick dusting before this storm is finally gone Friday night.
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