Weather Routing / Private Weather Forecasts

Private Forecast & Weather Routing
For The Bayview Mackinac Race


A Private Forecast Package from LakeErieWX includes:

  • Marine Weather Forecasting Guide: You will receive a copy of the LakeErieWX Marine Weather Forecasting Guide designed to decode the confusing symbols and shorthand included on weather forecast graphics.
  • Preliminary Briefing (Thursday): A detailed written discussion of the large-scale weather pattern and the potential for severe weather during the forecast period (Saturday through Monday). The preliminary briefing also includes a written wind and wave forecast. The Preliminary briefing is sent via email on the day preceding the delivery of your Private Forecast. Click here for sample.
  • Custom Forecast With Routing (Friday): A multi-page Private Forecast will be sent to you in PDF format the evening prior to your race (click here for sample). The forecast will include the following:
    • A detailed discussion and supporting forecast graphics showing the expected weather conditions including:
      • The location and movement of high and low pressure systems.
      • The passage of cold fronts, warm fronts, stationary fronts, and troughs, including the anticipated impact on the wind.
      • The potential for thunderstorms and organized severe weather including when, where, and what type of storms are expected.
      • A detailed wind speed, wind direction, gust speed, and wave height forecast at 3-hour intervals.
    • A computer-generated routing solution based on the preferred wind forecast and your yacht’s unique performance characteristics (your boat’s polar data is required).
  • Forecast & Routing Update (Saturday): A multi-page Quick Update in pdf format will be sent on Saturday morning (click here for sample). The update will include:
    • Surface weather maps showing the location of areas of high pressure, low pressure and frontal boundaries.
    • Convective Outlooks showing the potential for the development of severe thunderstorms.
    • A detailed wind speed, wind direction, gust speed, and wave height forecast at 3-hour intervals.
    • A computer-generated routing solution based on your polars and the latest wind forecast.
  • Consultations: Your questions regarding the forecast will be answered via email or telephone.


  • $249 for the Private Custom Forecast package (including weather routing) covering Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
  • $125 for a Private Forecast with no weather routing covering Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

Limited Availability
Creating a private forecast is time-consuming, therefore a limited number of customers are accepted for each event. Please contact me at to sign up before spaces are filled.

Mark Thornton

Mark Thornton has been boating on the Great Lakes for more than 30 years. Mark recently transitioned from sailing and now owns Osprey, a Mainship 34 Pilot. He is a 2006 graduate of the Penn State University Certificate of Achievement in Weather Forecasting, a two-year program that develops skills in general, tropical, and severe weather forecasting.

He is the president of LakeErieWX LLC, a company dedicated to providing marine weather education and forecasting resources for recreational boaters ( Mark publishes a marine weather blog and teaches basic forecasting seminars to recreational boaters during the off-season. He has served as the Race Meteorologist for the Bayview Race to Mackinac since 2014. Mark is employed as a Teaching Assistant in the Certificate of Achievement in Weather Forecasting Program at Penn State University.

Click here to read about my marine weather forecasting seminars, webinars and presentations. Click here for the current schedule of educational programs.

Interested in reading and learning more about marine weather? A few times each year, I publish an article on an interesting marine weather event. Click here to subscribe to my 'no spam' email distribution list.

Phone: 440.250.9179

Marine Weather Forecasting
Cruisers University - Annapolis Boat Shows
October 8 & 9, 2024
Click here for details.

Click here for the complete seminar schedule.

Seminar Reviews
"You have a passion for meteorology that is contagious and a gift for communicating a complex subject.".

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