Iditasnow update & more snow rollers

Since the leap day checkpoint report, most towns have slowed their snowfall pace. Haines and Yakutat, however, have been running hard, each having added an impressive 50 inches this first half of March. The Top Ten as of 15 March place town total through 3/15 % of average % of record current depth 1 Haines […]

Not the last great Alaska snow race

Today is the start of the world famous Iditarod trail sled dog race (“the last great race”), so I thought maybe I should give an report on another (unofficial) great race: the Alaska snow race. It has been a very snowy winter in many parts of Alaska and there is plenty of talk and a […]

Why Fairbanks cold snaps aren’t what they used to be

It’s been a cold winter across most of Alaska. It’s not the first and it won’t be the last. During every winter there are relatively colder and warmer periods. This year these cold snaps and warm spells seem to be aligned pretty well to the calendar months: November was cold, December warm, and January…one of […]

The highly channeled winds of coastal Alaska

Alaska is a big place, and the weather system affecting our state right now is even bigger, but I’m going to show you that is it the small scale that counts when it comes to winds of the south and southeast coasts. As I write this, virtually the whole state is under the influence of […]

Polar low blasts the Pribilof Islands

Polar lows are small, somewhat elusive, and usually quite potent…cool stuff for weather watchers. They are small compared to their more common, mid-latitude big brother lows, up to a few hundred miles across, compared to a thousand or more miles across for the later. They are more like the size of hurricanes. For that reason, […]

Wind Driven Snow Rollers

My tips for witnessing unusual, interesting or simply beautiful weather phenomena have always included spending as much time as possible outdoors and keeping your eyes up, as in looking up at the sky often. A couple days ago I found some unusual weather down at my feet. Snow rollers! My other advice is to always […]

Alaska winter highway weather

Driving in winter in Alaska can be interesting, to put it mildly. Driving around town is included in this statement but is certainly not like hitting the open highway, crossing vast, unpopulated areas and ascending and descending mountain passes while dealing with any combination of snow, ice, fog, white-out*, wind, extreme cold, long darkness or […]