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Cloudy & dry Sunday -- our current dry stretch is a rarity for January

Clear Skies Bill Beatty
Posted at 9:00 AM, Jan 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-10 09:29:34-05

WEST MICHIGAN — West Michigan has not seen any measurable precipitation since January 5th and rain/snow chances will not increase until Thursday. While this may not seem like a super long stretch of dry weather, for January, it is pretty abnormal.

According to the National Weather Service out of Grand Rapids, 4 dry January days in a row happens less than once a year. For us to get potentially eight days in a row of dry weather in January would be pretty rare. Dry stretches of 7 days or longer in January have only happened five times since 2001.

The main reason for the long stretch of no precipitation is because of high pressure that has remain stagnant over the area. The jet stream recently split, with one piece moving well to our south and the other well to our north. This has kept all storm systems out of the area and high pressure locked in place. What will eventually kick high pressure out is the jet stream finally dipping back south, allowing for a low pressure system to develop and bring rain and snow to the area on Thursday.

This dip in the jet stream will begin a period of active weather after our long dry spell. It is expected to bring the area high snow chances, colder temperatures and lake-effect snow. If you are a winter lover, the second half of January looks to be just active enough to give you the snow you deserve! Up to this point, we have only seen 7.5" of snow so we are in desperate need of more.