Following record-breaking snow in Erie, PA earlier this week, another round of heavy lake-effect snow is ahead from Friday into Saturday. This will hit similar locations that were hit by the snow around Christmas.

On Friday, a fast-moving disturbance will move through southern portions of the Great Lakes, so a synoptic scale snow is in the forecast for these areas while northern areas in the region deal with lake-effect snow. This includes the northern shore of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, northern Lower Michigan, and between Cleveland and Buffalo. Based on the orientation of the winds on Friday, they will not maximize the surface areas of the lakes, so we’re not expecting significant snowfall totals. Localized areas may still receive up to eight inches of snow on Friday.

Then overnight Friday, light snow will move through the southeastern quadrant of the Great Lakes region. This is associated with the disturbance from the Northwest U.S.. Meanwhile in portions of the UP of Michigan and the entire western shore of Lower Michigan, lake-effect snow will be pounding the area. The NAM model is even hinting at the formation of a mesolow over Lake Superior. If that moves onshore of the UP of Michigan, an enhancement of snowfall totals will occur.

The lake-effect snow will continue for similar areas that have experienced it Friday night, but now it will also include snow bands coming off Lakes Erie and Ontario. Again, based on the wind direction, significant totals in excess of one foot are unlikely for most areas on Saturday. In the afternoon, the snow will begin to dwindle across the western half of Lower Michigan while it continues for the other areas. All of this lake-effect snow will then likely wind down Saturday night.


Jackson is Head of Content and Social Media at WeatherOptics. He is currently a student at the University of Miami, studying Meteorology and Broadcast Journalism. Dill produces forecast articles for the website and helps to manage the content schedule. He has also led the growth of WeatherOptics’ social media accounts, working to keep them aligned with the company’s evolving vision.

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