“It’s been a lot of years since I’ve seen this much snow,” said Linda Mlynarchek of Grand Haven, who helped her friend, Joyce Glanville, clear snow from her vehicle on Five Mile Hill.
Mlynarchek stopped brushing the car and motioned west toward Lake Michigan, frozen and silent at the bottom of the hill.
“Back in 1978, the snow came off Lake Michigan and up over the stop sign down there,” she said. “We were up on this hill three days without getting off.”
According to the National Weather Service, 8 inches fell in Muskegon on Wednesday and more than 13 inches on the south side of Holland. Grand Haven was somewhere in between, with an estimated 10 inches of white stuff.
It may have looked like a record with torrents of flakes almost all day and the depths of the drifts we awoke to Thursday morning, but it wasn’t. We won that blizzard blue ribbon on Jan. 10, 1982, when 22 inches fell in one day. The most recent day of more snowfall was the 14.8 inches that fell Jan. 17, 2009.
In downtown Grand Haven, city public works crews cranked up heavy machinery to load dump trucks full of snow from a 15-foot-tall pile on Third Street. The trucks then hauled the fluff to Harbor Island, where mounds resembling miniature mountains protrude from the land.
“We’re hauling all this out of downtown to get ready for Winterfest,” said city truck driver Shawn Matson after dumping a load in a spattering spray of powder.
To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.