Great Lakes ice may be near peak for winter

Open water is hard to find on the Great Lakes right now. The lakes may be near the peak of winter ice this week.

A rather rare event, but as of this writing, almost all of the Great Lakes have greater than 90% ice coverage.

The holdout is Lake Ontario which is sitting only at around 43% ice coverage, although that is close to the most that lake has had all year.

Three of the Great Lakes are at 95% ice coverage including Lake Superior, Lake Huron and Lake Erie. Lake Michigan is not far behind sitting at 92% iced over. For a brief time Monday, Lake Michigan dipped down to 86%, but has climbed back to that 92% mark.

Great Lakes history of ice formation shows that ice coverage typically peaks between March 10th and 15th in a typical year before starting to break up and the total ice coverage goes down. This is the most ice coverage on the Great Lakes in at least 30 years.

Here are the ice coverage stats according to the Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory.

Lake Huron: 95.94% covered

Lake Erie: 95.83% covered

Lake Superior: 95.29% covered

Lake Michigan: 92.45% covered

Lake Ontario: 43.03% covered

Great Lakes Total: 91.04% covered

There is expected to be some moderation in temperatures over the next week or two meaning that this may very well be the peak of ice on the Great Lakes this winter.