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“Where did my winter go?”

Not that long ago, it was possible to walk across Lake Erie during the wintertime, because the ice and snowpack was so thick. The biggest hurdle would be traversing the ice and snow mountains that accumulated near the shores. There were ice caverns too. Looking out at the lake was akin to observing a massive frozen tundra. There was something awesome about it – really spectacular.

In recent years, we have been seeing less and less ice and snow coverage, which many people thought was an anomaly, but these days it’s looking as if global warming is having a significant impact on Lake Erie’s “freezing” conditions, or lack there of.

Videographer, film producer, and documentarian Stephen R. Powell has noticed the same bizarre weather patterns. To Powell, the mountains of ice and snow was once film-worthy, and he spent a good amount of time capturing the wintery elements and scapes. But those blizzardy days are now long gone, which has Powell asking “Where did my winter go?”

In the video, Powell points out that Buffalo is (still) famous for its winters. While these winters have driven some people away in the past (think of the Blizzard of ’77), a lot of people continue to embrace this city because of the snow factor.

From Powell: Great Lakes ice coverage at lowest point on record. Understanding the major effect of ice on the Great Lakes is crucial because it impacts a range of societal benefits provided by the lakes, from hydropower generation to commercial shipping to the fishing industry (and migratory birds). Great Lakes ice… where did it go?

If you enjoy that cautionary video, you might want to take a look at another Lake Erie waterfront video that Powell has produced, which demonstrates the powerful forces of the water. As we see the ice and snow dissipating with each passing winter, it will be interesting to see how the rest of the seasons are impacted by Global Warming in years to come.

Also see Polar Vortex at Niagara Falls

Also see Beautiful Winter in Buffalo

Written by queenseyes


Newell Nussbaumer is 'queenseyes' - Eyes of the Queen City and Founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Festival that built the world's largest ice maze (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurrious! winter festival. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator behind Saturday Artisan Market (SAM) at Canalside, Buffalo Porchfest, and Paint vs. Paint. Founder of The Peddler retro and vintage market on Elmwood. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at Statler City, the Hertel Alley Street Art Festival, and The Flutterby Festival.

Contact Newell Nussbaumer |

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