Judging by the sun March sees the arrival of spring in the Northern Hemisphere. The conditions in Muskegon were typical of the spring climate temperature wise. For the month temperatures were .6 degrees lower than normal. For a comparison temperatures in March 2000 were 4° above.
After a warm period that included the months high temperature of 55° temperatures stood at + 1.4°. Immediately after this came the months signature weather event- a cold snap. The 24th through the 26th Muskegon experienced the very definition of a cold snap with a sudden spell of inclement weather. During this period temperatures reached the monthly low of 10° on the 26th. The cold temperatures were product of a large, cold high pressure system that originated in Canada. The system brought north winds that brought the cold air with them. Additionally 4 inches of snow fells on the 25th and 3 inches on the 26th. The snow came by virtue of Muskegon’s position on the east/downwind side of Lake Michigan.
This sudden 7 inches of snow was the majority of the months 9.4 inches of snow. This was 2 inches under normal March snowfall.
The rainfall was even farther from normal levels. Muskegon received only .48 inches of rain the making it the 3rd driest March on record.
Winds were also below normal for March at 0.3 knots, .9 under the norm. The windiest day was the 5th with an average wind speed of 18.5. Calmest day of the month was the 22nd with 3.6 knots average.
March saw prevailing winds from the west with 61% of the days seeing west winds. This is compared to 34% of days typically seeing west winds.
Further prevailing winds on Lake Michigan in March are typically north. Muskegon has only 4 days of north wind in Muskegon.
The cool dry conditions had little affect on lake levels. The low precipitation level in Muskegon were typical as areas received as low as 20% of their normal precipitation. March was not a positive month for lake levels.
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