April snow in Michigan 'really not that unusual,' weather service says
The start of the workweek brought snow after a sunny weekend that promised spring was finally here.
The National Weather Service had predicted up to 6 inches of snow in portions of Michigan on Monday, but the totals fell much shorter in many places. Local numbers ranged from 2-3.5 inches, with many areas hitting about 2 inches, according the weather service reports Monday night.
A winter weather advisory remained until 8 a.m. for Presque Isle and Alpena counties, where the weather service said the best chances for snow accumulations of 1-3 inches was along the Lake Huron shoreline.
"It's really not that unusual" to see snow this late in April, said Trent Frey, a meteorologist with the weather service in White Lake Township.
"This is the third year in with measurable snow around this time," Frey said. "Today's accumulation won't be 3.5 inches."
Overall, the weather service estimates about 32% of their recorded years have seen measurable snow after April 15.
Last April 20 and April 21, about 3.5 inches of snow between the two days, said Frey. On April 17, 20 about 3.4 inches of snow fell.
A low-pressure system moved through the northern Ohio Valley and dropped snow over the region, starting after noon Monday, according to Ian Lee, a meteorologist with the weather service in White Lake Township.
The spring snow came a little later than the last average measurable snowfall for the region, the weather service said. April 7 is usually the cutoff for Metro Detroit.
Monday’s precipitation likely won’t rise above the totals for the top 10 dates for snowfall:
•6 inches on May 9, 1923
•5 inches on May 21-23, 1883
•4.5 inches April 17, 1921
•4.3 inches April 23-24, 2005
•3.5 inches April 20-21, 2021
•3.5 inches April 19-20, 1943
•3.4 inches April 17, 2020
•3.4 inches April 17, 1983
•3.2 inches April 14-15, 2014
•3 inches April 16-17, 1961, and April 29, 1909
A winter weather advisory was in effect for Huron, Tuscola, Sanilac, Lapeer and St. Clair counties until early Tuesday. For Oakland and Macomb counties, the advisory was to end Monday night with accumulations of 2-4 inches. The Thumb area could see as much as 6 inches.
By Monday night, Port Huron had 3.4 inches; Lexington in Sanilac County, 3.5 inches; North Branch in Lapeer County, 2.9 inches; Lapeer, 2.9 inches; Grand Blanc, 2.3 inches; Troy, 2 inches; Highland, 2.5 inches; Clarkston, 1.5; and Howell, 2.3 over seven hours. In Wayne County, Romulus saw 2.3 inches and Canton Township, 1.6.
The rest of the week will get warmer, though not necessarily drier: rain showers are expected on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, but Saturday's high could pass 70 degrees.
Staff Writer Sarah Rahal contributed to this report.