You??ll never find a warmer Christmas than the one in 1994. Mild weather set in a few days before and peaked with a high of 52 degrees on Christmas Eve at the National Weather Service (NWS) near Negaunee. It was more like an early fall day with some folks around Marquette taking to the ice-free waters of Lake Superior with sail boats and canoes. Snow production up to that point had been minimal, so the light covering melted away under bright, sunny skies.
It continued mild through Christmas week as mild Pacific flow dominated (Image above). Highs settled in the 40s the next three days, with some cooling in the days leading up to New Year??s. However, no significant snow fell. December 1994 ended over 10 degrees above average. Only 7.4 inches of snow fell the whole month; normal at the NWS is over three feet. The mild, snowless weather continued into the New Year. It took until the end of the third week of January to establish a substantial snow cover over the northern Upper Peninsula, while snow cover stayed thin the entire winter of ??94-??95 in the south. True winter conditions only lasted for about seven weeks before a bout of early spring weather occurred in March. It was a rough year for winter lovers and those who make a living because of snow.This December has certainly been mild. Through today, we??re running over six degrees above average. Luckily, snow came in the nick of time for most of the U.P. However in the Copper Country, snow remains thin for snowmobiling with only a few inches on the ground. It does not look like we??ll be adding substantially to our snow cover over the next week at least. But temperatures will remain close to average so the snow that??s on the ground will stay.