GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — At this time last year, we were finishing a summer of record high water levels on Lake Michigan.

In total, water level records were broken eight months in a row in 2020, from January to August. 

Things have been very different in 2021. Though water levels are still high, the records are behind us. There has been more available sand at Lake Michigan beaches this summer and waves have not washed up and over the piers as frequently. 

Water levels on the Great Lakes are now in their period of seasonal decline. Lake Michigan-Huron (considered the same body of water by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Detroit) fell 2 inches last month. Lake Superior and Lake Ontario are also down 2 inches and Lake Erie has fallen 3 inches.

Over the last year, Lake Michigan has fallen a whopping 17 inches. It is still 18 inches above normal. 

Lake levels on Lake Michigan are forecast to fall 3 inches over the next month. 

Lake Michigan near Honor in August 2021. (Nick Ponton/WOOD TV8)