The temperature at Ironwood rocketed to a record high of 97 on July 26, 1931. It was a warm seventh month across the Upper Peninsula. In Marquette, the mean temperature was 69.8, 4.8 degrees above average.
The entire year was warm in the Upper Peninsula. In over 100 years of records, 1931 was by far the warmest at Ironwood with a yearly mean of 46.4 degrees. Even the Super El Nino year of 1998 was 1.8 degrees cooler.
There??s lots of talk these days about how this is a time of unprecedented warmth. It all matters on where you look and at what time period you are looking at. For instance, Ironwood??s records show that the warm cycle of the early to mid 20th century was as warm as or warmer than this current warm spell.
Let??s examine the two cycles. From 1920 (about the time the previous warm cycle began) to 1941, there were 17 out of 21 years with a mean temperature for the year above 40 degrees. On the other hand from 1980 (roughly when the latest warm spell began) to 2001 there were only 12 out of 21 years with a mean temperature above 40. No doubt we??ve been in a warm cycle the past couple of decades. But at least for the Upper Peninsula, the warmth is not unprecedented.
There will be no warmth this weekend. As we??ve been advertising, a big, cool upper-air low will settle into the Great Lakes and dominate our weather. It will move slowly. The low is now just west of Thunder Bay, Ontario (Image 1). By Sunday morning, it??s forecast to just be over northern Lake Michigan (Image 2). That means an unseasonably cool weekend with some scattered showers. However, the heaviest rains over the east will wind down tonight.