BY MICHELLE MERLIN
— TRAVERSE CITY — Residents of the Grand Traverse region have a good chance of seeing a carpet of snow on the ground and flakes swirling in the air Tuesday morning.
A few might even have more than six inches of snow.
The first snow to really stick in the area has finally landed, with most expected to see between two and four inches by Tuesday morning, said National Weather Service meteorologist Scott Rozanski. The NWS also issued a lake effect snow warning through noon Tuesday for Grand Traverse, Leelanau and Benzie counties.
Isolated areas in those counties could get between six and 12 inches of snow.
"This is some of the first significant lake effect snow of the season," said NWS Meteorologist Keith Berger. "The opening shots of winter are being fired.
"Lake effect snow notoriously can range from someone gets eight or nine inches of snow to a dusting five miles down the road," said Berger. "We're looking at some isolated locations that may see readings as high as six to 12 inches."
A lake effect snow advisory was also issued for Kalkaska and Antrim counties, which could see between three to six inches of snow.
This is the first time there’s been a real snow event in the first half of November in four years.
“It’s really, really time for this to be happening,” said Rozanski. “This is the time for northern Michigan to see snow.”
The last four years were considered a bit of an anomaly for the area with a more delayed winter caused by cold air blowing just a bit more to the west of Traverse City instead of over it, Rozanski said.
Although the snow is back on regular track, the cold air blowing in from the lakes is actually colder than usual.
“It is significant that in the last five years, this is the coldest air we have seen in the Grand Traverse Bay area this early,” said Rozanski. “This is typically what we would see in the middle of December.”
People in downtown Traverse City were excited about the snow.
“We’re on vacation and enjoying it,” said Amber Parmelee, a Clare resident who was visiting Traverse City and wished she’d brought skis. “We wish there was more to actually use them.”
Other people just enjoyed the cool air.
“It’s great to take a nice brisk walk,” said JoDee Randall, a Traverse City resident. “We love it. It’s getting to be the season.”