Can Summer be Over?

posted in: Weather Forecast | 2



There will be updates on Harvey today and that will be the weather headline for this weekend. The picture is from last fall not this year.

We are now coming to the end of August and the end of meteorological summer. While August still has a few days to go the mean so far is now ( ) and while back in June there were some who thought the summer was going to be a “hot” one in reality it turned out to be rather a pleasant one with the mean in June being 69.5° (+1.) in July the mean was 72.5° (+0.0) and so far in August the mean is and we should end the warm season with just five 90° days all in all a average to just below average summer. I think many times we forget just how pleasantly cool our summers are in this area. Last weekend I was in south central Kentucky (that’s about 500 miles due south of Grand Rapids) for the eclipse and down there the temperatures were hot and humid all 3 days we were there. With official highs on Saturday of 90° Saturday of 92° and 92 again on Monday. On the car I had it as high as 98° and on some of the signs in town there were reading as high as 97° No way around it, it was hot and humid. While the mean temperature at Bowling Green was 77.1° (-0.8°) they still have had 8 days of 90 or better in August and the average high in Bowling Green in August was 87.0° In July the mean was 80.1° (+1.1°) the average high was 90.1° and the average low was 70°. So the next time (next summer?) we have a day in the low 90’s just remember we still have it much nicer in the summer than our neighbors to our south.
Now here is some weather history for the last 10 days of August.
August 21
1958: Heavy rains fall for the second day in a row, causing some flooding in the Grand Rapids area where the two day rain total from August 20-21 was over 4 inches.
1975: A tornado blew down fruit trees in an orchard at Climax, in Kalamazoo County.
2003: A tornado with top winds around 120 mph strikes eastern Ingham County injuring two people and destroying two homes. The damage path was 4 and a half miles long and up to one half mile wide.
August 22
1936: The Dust Bowl summer of 1936 produced more record heat, with a high of 98 degrees at Grand Rapids and 94 at Lansing.
1964: Tornadoes struck in Calhoun, Lenawee and Hillsdale Counties. Three people were injured northeast of Battle Creek as a house and factory were damaged.
1966: A tornado struck Bellevue in Eaton County, damaging a house, garage and two cars.
2001: Severe weather and flooding hit Allegan, Ottawa and Kent Counties. Damaging winds hit Hudsonville, Plainwell, Dorr and Grand Rapids. Flooding occurred in eastern Van Buren and Kalamazoo Counties where three to five inches of rain is estimated to have fallen in less than 6 hours. Several streets were closed by flooding in Oshtemo flooded. Some businesses had to pump water out of their stores in Kalamazoo during the height of the storms.
August 23
2002: Several inches of rain in less than three hours caused flash flooding in Kalamazoo, where two homes and two businesses sustained extensive damage. Waldo Stadium, on the campus of Western Michigan University, also had major flooding. At one point, three feet of standing water covered the entire football field. The flooding caused an estimated 200,000 dollars in damage.
2007: Severe weather strikes Lower Michigan with large hail and damaging winds. Some of the worst damage is across Montcalm County where thousands of trees are downed by a tornado and downburst combination that produced estimated wind speeds up to 100 mph.
August 24
1947: The second long heat wave of the month comes to a close with record highs of 98 degrees at Grand Rapids and 96 degrees at Muskegon, contributing to the warmest August on record across West Michigan.
2006: Up to baseball-sized hail fell from a severe storm at Grand Junction in Van Buren County.
2007: Tornadoes strike Lower Michigan, with the worst damage near Potterville in Eaton County. Five people are injured and 15 homes are destroyed by a tornado with peak winds estimated at 140 mph. A weaker tornado hit southeast of Lansing but damage was limited to trees falling on mobile homes.
August 25
1910: A tornado injured four people near Scottville in Mason County. The tornado destroyed a cement block building, hurling the roof a half mile. Several other buildings were unroofed.
1940: A stalled cold front brings clouds and very cool high temperatures. At Muskegon the high was only 56 degrees and Lansing was 57, both records for the coldest maximum temperatures for the month of August. The high of 60 degrees at Grand Rapids is only one degree higher than the record of 59 degrees set on August 26, 1987.
2004: A strong downburst tore the roof off a section of the Maple Valley High School in Eaton County. The same storm produced a weak tornado minutes later that took the tin roof off a house in Vermontville
August 26
2000: Heavy rain and high winds produce scattered damage and some flooding. The roof of a bowling alley near Jackson was damaged by an apparent microburst. Roads were closed due to flooding across southern Kalamazoo County
August 27
1948: A late season heat wave with eight straight days in the 90s at Grand Rapids is underway. Record highs are set at Lansing with 98 degrees, Grand Rapids with 95 and Muskegon with 91.
1977: Only two days after setting a record low of 43 degrees, the low temperature at Muskegon is a balmy 74 degrees, a record warm low temperature for the date.
2004: A weak tornado struck near Sherman City in Isabella County. A mobile home was slightly damaged but no one was injured.
August 28
1982: A strong cold front pushes through and temperatures tumble to 36 degrees at Lansing, setting a record low for the date.
1986: There is an autumnal chill as morning lows fall to a record low of 41 at Grand Rapids and to 36 degrees at Lansing, tying the record low set only four years before.
August 29
1863: A hard freeze ends the growing season at many interior locations. Lansing falls to 26 degrees, the coldest ever recorded in August there.
1982: Cool air from Canada continues pouring in, with a record low of 38 degrees at Muskegon and 41 degrees at Grand Rapid
August 30
1949: A weak tornado struck just north of Grant in Newaygo County, causing some minor damage to small buildings and crops.
1976: Grand Rapids falls to 39 degrees, the coldest ever recorded during the month of August. Scattered frost occurs in rural areas.
1984: A tornado struck about 5 miles northeast of St. Johns in Clinton County, damaging two homes, but causing no injuries.
August 31
1993: Flash flooding hits Norton Shores in Muskegon County as slow moving thunderstorms dropped about an inch and a half of rain. Elsewhere, three people were struck by lightning in Otsego in Kalamazoo County. One suffered cardiac arrest but was not killed. The other two were treated for minor burns. The lightning strike occurred while two stranded motorists were huddled under an umbrella, watching the wrecker operator connect their vehicle. The lightning struck the umbrella and the motorists, then struck the wrecker operator, jolting him to the ground.
1953: August ends with a late season heat wave that will continue into September. Record highs of 97 are set at Grand Rapids, 96 at Lansing and 91 at Muskegon.
1975: Heavy rains on the last day of the month ensure that this will be the wettest August on record at Lansing and Muskegon. One to three inches of rain falls across the region, boosting the monthly total close to 10 inches.
2009: August ends on a cool note with a record low of 41 degrees at Muskegon. Some other readings include 34 at Big Rapids, 32 at Cadillac and 28 at Leota, in Clare County.




The radar above will auto-update.

At 700 AM CDT (1200 UTC), the eye of Hurricane Harvey was located by NOAA Doppler radar near latitude 28.7 North, longitude 97.2 West. Harvey is moving toward the north-northwest near 6 mph (9 km/h). Harvey is expected to slow down through the day and meander over southeastern Texas through the middle of next week. Doppler radar data indicate that maximum sustained winds have decreased to near 80 mph (130 km/h) with higher gusts. These winds are confined to a small area near the eye of the hurricane. Additional weakening is forecast, and Harvey is likely to become a tropical storm later today. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 35 miles (55 km) from the center, and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 140 miles (220 km). The estimated minimum central pressure is 975 mb (28.79 inches).



RAINFALL: Harvey is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 15 to 30 inches and isolated maximum amounts of 40 inches over the middle and upper Texas coast through next Wednesday. During the same time period Harvey is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 5 to 15 inches in far south Texas, the Texas Hill Country and southwest and central Louisiana. Rainfall of this magnitude will cause catastrophic and life-threatening flooding.

A list of rainfall observations compiled by the NOAA Weather Prediction Center can be found at:

STORM SURGE: The combination of a dangerous storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline. The water is expected to reach the following heights above ground if the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide… Port Aransas to Port O’Connor…6 to 12 ft Port O’Connor to Sargent…6 to 9 ft Sargent to Jamaica Beach…4 to 6 ft Baffin Bay to Port Aransas…3 to 6 ft Jamaica Beach to High Island…2 to 4 ft Mouth of the Rio Grande to Port Mansfield…1 to 3 ft High Island to Morgan City…1 to 3 ft

The deepest water will occur along the immediate coast near the area of onshore winds, where the surge will be accompanied by large and destructive waves. Surge-related flooding depends on the relative timing of the surge and the tidal cycle, and can vary greatly over short distances. For information specific to your area, please see products issued by your local National Weather Service forecast office.

WIND: Hurricane conditions are occuring inland from the coast within Harvey’s eyewall, and hurricane-force winds, especially in gusts, are still possible near the middle Texas coast for the next several hours. Tropical storm conditions are occurring in other portions of the hurricane and tropical storm warning areas. Tropical storm conditions are likely to persist along portions of the coast through at least Sunday.

SURF: Swells generated by Harvey are affecting the Texas, Louisiana, and northeast Mexico coasts. These swells are likely to cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions. Please consult products from your local weather office.

TORNADOES: Tornadoes are possible today and tonight near the middle and upper Texas coast into far southwest Louisiana.

Below is the 120 hour track and precipitation maps

harvey track



Forecast Maps

HRRR and Futurecast models runs are for 12 hours beginning at 7am – a second model run begins at 3pm


Day and Week Planner

This feature has auto location.

Point Forecasts


A weak area of low pressure will gradually track into the Great Lakes region over the next few days. While dry weather is forecasted to persist through today…some showers may start to move in from the northwest on Sunday. A risk for showers and even a few thunderstorms will be possible for all locations on Monday. Overall the temperature trend will be values closer to normal.

Forecast Discussion

(Click Images to Enlarge)

Grand Rapids
Grand Rapids

Rain Forecast
Rain Forecast
Cloud Forecast
Cloud Forecast
Dew Points
Dew Points
Wind Gusts
Wind Gusts


The main challenge in the short term deals with the potential for rain over the next couple of days. Overall the chances are on the increase. Today looks to be another dry day with mid level ridging in places. This feature builds east this afternoon and evening. Thus an increase in the cloud cover is forecasted.

Those mid to upper level clouds may hold back temperatures a few degrees. Late tonight and more so on Sunday some deeper moisture starts to pull in from the northwest. This approaching mid level low will be fairly slow to move in…however by Sunday night and especially Monday the moisture will be increasing considerably. PWAT values are shown to climb well over 1.25 inches.

Instability tries to advect in for late Sunday night but its not until Monday afternoon that conditions become favorable for storms. Will feature likely POPs for Monday as deep cyclonic flow and moisture are shown. .


The upper low is expected to weaken and become an open wave by Tuesday. However enough low level moisture will linger to expect scattered showers to continue Monday night and Tuesday. Then as the system departs, surface high pressure should build into the region, allowing for a drier period for Tuesday night and Wednesday.

There is some timing differences later in the week as a cold front and sharpening upper wave comes through. It appears we will see more rain Wednesday night and Thursday. After near to slightly below normal temps on Tuesday and Wednesday, the cold front will bring even cooler temps for Thursday and Friday.

2 on "Can Summer be Over?"

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Mark (East Lansing)
It was relatively similar over this way this summer . We had seven 90-degree days (the average for a summer here is eight). May was exactly average at +0.0°, June was +3.5°, July was +1.7°, and August we’re at -1.3°. It’s been a little drier than I would have preferred.… Read more »

We picked apples yesterday!!! Lol.