Four waterspouts spin over Lake Huron near Kincardine, Ontario, in 1999. NOAA

Ghostly, seaborne twisters are in the forecast into the weekend.

Residents of the northern Great Lakes recently have been watching something much better than TV: Dark waterspouts spinning into waves as if drilling for sturgeon and bloater.

The spout-fest hasn’t yet reached the intensity of others in 2003 and 1999 (pictured above), but it’s certainly something to behold. The International Centre For Waterspout Research predicted such an event on Wednesday, calling it a potential “outbreak” that could last for days. Warmer colors in this graphic show where seaborne twisters have a better chance of materializing:

So far most of the activity has centered in Northern Michigan in Lake Superior and Lake Huron, but the research center is sticking with its forecast for waterspouts “likely” appearing in all the Great Lakes on Friday. We’ll see how that plays out—meanwhile, here are some of the weak, watery vortexes people recorded on Thursday:

NWS Marquette Michigan

Tornado over Lake Superior today! Looked pretty sweet. #lakesuperior #906 #Tornado

A video posted by @shaylee_danielle on

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. Transportation

    In Paris, a Very Progressive Agenda Is Going Mainstream

    Boosted by big sustainability wins, Mayor Anne Hidalgo is pitching bold plans to make the city center “100 percent bicycle” and turn office space into housing.

  2. photo: subway in NYC

    Inside Bloomberg's $1 Trillion Infrastructure Plan

    Drawing on his time as New York City mayor, Michael Bloomberg proposes handing power and money to urban leaders as part of his Democratic presidential bid.

  3. A photo of high-rises in Songdo, billed as the world's "smartest" city.

    Sleepy in Songdo, Korea’s Smartest City

    The hardest thing about living in an eco-friendly master-planned utopia? Meeting your neighbors.  

  4. photo: a couple tries out a mattress in a store.

    What’s the Future of the ‘Sleep Economy’?

    As bed-in-a-box startup Casper files for an IPO, the buzzy mattress seller is betting that the next big thing in sleep is brick-and-mortar retail outlets.

  5. How To

    Want Solar Panels on Your Roof? Here's What You Need to Know

    A handy reference for navigating an emerging industry.