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2012 vs. 2013: Ice-Covered Lake Erie

On Feb. 6, 2012, there was barely any ice on Lake Erie. As of Wednesday, there is a thin coating over much of the lake. The temperatures have been below freezing day and night since Jan. 31 over Lake Erie, in the mid- to upper 20s during the day and into the teens at night, which is good for ice formation. In most places, however, the ice is too thin for people to go out on it.

U.S. National Weather Service, Buffalo, N.Y.:
We have clear skies over the Eastern Great Lakes this morning, and it looks like nearly all of Lake Erie is now ice covered! The attached image is from 945 AM this morning. It's been color enhanced (light blue) to indicate ice cover over Lake Erie. The dark pixels over the eastern end and the white areas over the western end also probably have ice cover too, but it is difficult to quickly separate snow covered land, clouds, and ice cover with our software. A animation of visible satellite data confirms nearly continuous ice. If time and satellite data permits, we'll get a higher resolution image to you later this afternoon.

"I know last year at this time there wasn't a sliver of ice on Lake Erie," AccuWeather Meteorologist Dale Mohler said. "This year, there's a lot more ice but most of it is thin. There was very little ice earlier this winter. It just formed recently. It's so thin that there's not even snow lying on it. I think all the ice has formed within the last week, since it was so warm on Jan. 29 and 30.