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Powerful Storm to Impact the West; Fire Weather Concerns for Areas of the Plains

A powerful winter storm is underway across the west bringing heavy higher elevation mountain snow, dangerous blizzard for the Sierra Nevada Mountains, damaging winds, hazardous sea conditions and cold temperatures to much of the West through this weekend. Meanwhile, critical fire weather concerns increase this weekend for portions of the central and southern High Plains. Read More >

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  • The Storm of November 9-10, 1975

The Storm of November 9-10, 1975

Comparison of the tracks of the November 1975 and November 1998 storms. The track of the November 1998 storm (labeled in blue) was very similar to the track of the November 1975 storm (labeled in yellow). Image created by Don Rolfson, National Weather Service Marquette











Track and measured pressure

During the period of November 9-10, 1975, a strong autumn storm tracked from the central U.S. through the Great Lakes region. While intense, it was not unusually strong for November. Early on the morning of November 9, a low pressure system was organizing in central Kansas and had a pressure of 29.53 inches (1000mb). By the evening of November 9, the low had moved northeast to eastern Iowa and had strengthened to 29.32 inches (993mb). During the next 12 hours, the storm system underwent its most rapid intensification as it moved northeast into Upper Michigan. On the morning of November 10, the low was located over Marquette, MI, and had a pressure of 29.00 inches (982mb). The low tracked northeast across Lake Superior that morning before reaching just southwest of James Bay in Ontario during the evening. Its pressure that evening was 28.88 inches (978mb).

Observations on Lake Superior

Ship observations during the November 1975 storm showed sustained wind speeds of 30 to 45 knots from the northeast, east, or southeast prior to the low pressure system crossing the lake. As the low crossed the lake, winds shifted to the northwest and increased. Wind speeds of 50 knots were recorded over the eastern part of the lake. Ship observations indicated waves of 16 to 18 feet during the height of the storm. Keep in mind that the rare peak waves could have been one-and-a-half to two times that height.

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