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Grand Rapids Summer Temperatures Suggest a Very Snowy Winter Ahead

Joshua Lott, Getty Images

Grand Rapids has not had a 90 degree day in 2014.

If our cool summer continues, recent history tells us we are in for a very snowy winter.

There has only been one summer since 1950 in which Grand Rapids did not have any 90 degree days. It was 1951.

The summer of 1951 was followed by the snowiest winter on record. Grand Rapids saw 132 inches of snow in the winter of 1951-52.

The number of 90 degree days in July also gives us an idea of what could be on the way in winter.

In the six years since 1950 (seven counting 2014) in which there have been zero or one 90 degree days in July (1951, 1958, 1967, 1989, 2000, 2008) four of them have ranked in the ten snowiest on record.

  • 1951-52 (1st) – 132.2 inches
  • 2008-09 (5th/tie) – 104.8 inches
  • 1958-59 (5th/tie) – 104.8 inches
  • 2000-01 (10th) – 98.3 inches

This is the first summer since 1989 that Grand Rapids has not reached 90 degrees by the end of July. Overall, 2014 was the fifth coldest July on record for Grand Rapids.

The sample size of the records we have to work with is small. The numbers which indicate how many 90 degree days in summer only go back to 1950.

It’s not a lot of data, but still enough to suggest a trend.

Last winter was the second snowiest on record in Grand Rapids and it appears that an encore performance this winter isn’t too much of a stretch at this point.

Good luck to us all.

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