HOUGHTON — Lake Superior levels continue to be high and marine engineers are warning the problem will likely get worse after this upcoming winter.
The shoreline at McClain state park tells the story. It’s full of uprooted trees and eroded sand. Both these problems are a result of both high winds and higher than normal water levels.
Marine engineers at Michigan Tech University have been watching and monitoring the problem and says it’s not just a problem here.
Great Lakes Research engineer Andrew Barnard says, “Property owners losing some beach front to roads such as 41in Baraga getting very close to being washed out.” Lake Superior has seen more elevation and more water than the other four Great Lake combined. With a six feet increase in six years, engineers have been watching closely, mainly using three buoys.
Guy Meadows is also an engineer and says, “It’s really the frequency and intensity of storms that we experience all year long that we experience all year long that contribute to lake levels.”
As we head into the winter the problem is expected to get worse. Snow fall is directly linked to lake levels. Superior is already 1333 feet deep and expected to increase further swamping docks and public beaches. The Great Lakes basin as a whole holds 6 quadrillions of water.
With another intense winter expected Michigan Tech Engineers will be monitoring snow fall and keeping the public informed about all air, wind, and atmospheric changes.