Theoretical and Applied Climatology

, Volume 109, Issue 3, pp 415–428

Spatial and temporal aspects of the lake effect on the southern shore of Lake Superior

Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s00704-012-0585-2

Cite this article as:
Hinkel, K.M. & Nelson, F.E. Theor Appl Climatol (2012) 109: 415. doi:10.1007/s00704-012-0585-2


A climate-monitoring network was implemented in a large private preserve along the southern shore of Lake Superior. The network uses a dense sampling design to assess the spatial and temporal influence of a large, cold body of water on adjacent terrestrial surfaces. Based on a 3-year record, near-shore sites are 1–2°C cooler than sites 5 km inland in spring and summer, and 1°C warmer in winter. Near the shore, winds are from the NNW most of the year, and are much stronger in winter. Inland, southwesterly flow is typical and overall wind velocity is lower and more consistent. This decoupling is attributable to the influence of the Huron Mountains, a topographic barrier that restricts the lake effect to a narrow coastal zone. A 2-year record of hourly air temperature measurements from 26–30 sites across the study area demonstrates that the mean daily temperature can differ by as much as 11°C, but the average difference is 2.5–3.0°C.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of GeographyUniversity of CincinnatiCincinnatiUSA
  2. 2.American Geographical Society LibraryUniversity of WisconsinMilwaukeeUSA
  3. 3.Department of GeographyUniversity of DelawareNewarkUSA

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