2013 - A Weather Review


by Ryan Overton

As I started to write this I can't help but laugh. 2014 has started off with a bang, but not here. Relatively quiet weather across Alaska while the lower 48 gets hammered with chilly temps. It is January 6th and our high was 40... Places like Chicago, Minneapolis and Detroit saw feet of snow, and temps and wild chills below zero. So, just to put this into perspective. 


You just never know what will happen when you enter the New Year. Especially weather wise. Records are meant to be broken and that sure happened in 2013. I know everyone remembers the summer? 40 days straight of 70 degrees or above. Also had one of the best dry streaks during that same time period. Or the few days at hit 80 and 90 in some areas. Just think about this... During the middle of May only a mere month earlier there was snow that fell marking the latest snowfall ever recorded in Anchorage. Like I said, records are meant to be broken and I'm sure we will find and break more records in the coming year.


So many have asked how are we doing as far as snow through the month of December. In my personal opinion its been a very "average" year for snow fall. For the months of November (11.2") and December (23.1") it has given us a winter total of 34.3" of snow. How does that compare to normal? Generally September sees .4" of snow, October will see 7.9" of snow, and keep in mind we saw nothing in either month. Then November with 13.1" and December averages 16.7" of snow. So our November of 2013 was a little on the light side but December made up for it. So our normal snowfall for this time of year should be 38.1" which we are behind by a mere 3.8" of snow. This is why I feel we are close to where we should be.


Looking at total precipitation for the year 2013 saw 25.97" of total precipitation, where as a normal year would bring 16.58". So we were well above normal. We had some of the two wettest months with 5.42" of rain in August and another 5.85" of rain in September.


For how much snow fell during the year, the calendar year saw 103.4" of snow and normally during a calendar year Anchorage would average 74.5" of snow. So a bit above average. Just remember that snow is measured not by the calendar year as I just did, but starting October 1st and going through the New Year into the end of September.


As we enter 2014 so far it seems very "average" with warmer than normal temps, but we all know that can change within a few days.

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