In Michigan, winter’s start … depends

A deserted beach in Traverse City awaits the start of winter. PHOTO/ALYSSA Steele

OU News Bureau

In Traverse City, located 254 miles northwest of Detroit, winter comes sooner than it does in southeast Michigan.

In mid-October, the weather starts to cool down, and about two weeks later winter starts to set in. The number of tourists starts to decrease after Labor Day, but there is still an out-of-town presence through the Christmas holidays.

The tourist presence is not as large during the winter season. but winter apparel sales do not drop.

While winter apparel start selling in early September, locals don’t start buying until the end of the month and early October, according to Alissa Russo, assistant manager at Boyne Country Sports in Traverse City.

Fall exits in a blaze of glory. PHOTO/ALYSSA STEELE

According to Current Results Weather and Science Facts, the first snowfall in Traverse City typically happens in late October. According to Wunderground.com, the first snow fell this year on Oct. 31. In southeast Michigan, the first snow flurry typically doesn’t occur until early November.

In Traverse City, once the snow starts falling, it sticks and stays. The heaviest accumulation is in January, which averages 33 inches. The weather website states that in Traverse City there is almost always 3 inches of snow on the ground during winter.

Typically, Traverse City sees about 96 inches of snow from December to February.

Elizabeth Locricchio, who moved to Traverse City four years ago, said, “The first year we moved up here we saw a total of 263 inches of snow.”

That same year — 2013 — southeast Michigan received an estimated 94 inches of snow — double the usual amount in winter.

In Suttons Bay which is 25 north of Traverse City, they got even more snow that year.

“On the sides of the roads in Suttons Bay, they would cut out an area to get to the sidewalks. That’s how high the snow was,” Locricchio said.

The residents in Traverse City have to prepare for a longer, colder winter than people in lower Michigan do.

“We have to as far as making sure I have snow tires on my car, making sure the kids have snow boots that fit, making sure we have shovels, and bring everything in from outside,” Locricchio said.

The average temperature in January, according to Current Results of Weather and Science facts, is about 23 degrees. In southeast Michigan in January, it’s 28 degrees.

Winter activities in Traverse City also begin earlier than they do in southeast Michigan.

Winter activities include skiing and snowboarding, ice skating and ice fishing.

Within an hour of Traverse City, skiers can choose from among six ski resorts and snowmobilers from more than 200 miles of trails, according to Traversecity.com.

In southeast Michigan, there are four ski resorts and several snowmobiling trails, according to Metro Parent magazine.



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Posted by on Nov 20 2017. Filed under Featured article, Michigan. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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