Extremely cold winter leaves Lake Michigan cooler than normal

CREATED Jul 14, 2014

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MILWAUKEE - The effects of our extremely cold winter can still be felt in Lake Michigan.  

"The water temperature this year is averaging quite a bit below normal," said Steve Hentz, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Sullivan.

The average temperature as of Friday should have been 64 degrees.  It was closer to 57.
 
"[It's because] of the colder winter that we had, in addition to the much greater than normal ice cover.  Spring was also cool and summer here - now, we've warmed up a little bit, but we're not really having a hot summer.  In general, it's due to the cold temperatures we've been having ever since winter."
 
The difference is even more dramatic when you go back a couple of years.
 
"In 2012 and 2010 we had Lake Michigan temperatures around 75 degrees and right now we're in the mid to upper 50s, so we're almost 20 degrees cooler than we were just two years ago," said Hentz. 
 
Hentz said the water is expected to stay cooler than normal for at least another six to ten days.