Blog updates this month are starting to sound like a broken record, but that's also an apt description of the extraordinary weather pattern that continues to pump warm air northward across Alaska. The warmth has been very anomalous, but the persistence of the pattern may be the biggest story, as Fairbanks has now seen 17 consecutive days with a daily high temperature of 20°F or higher and a low temperature above 0°F. The 1981-2010 normals for the time of year are around +5°F and -12°F for the high and low respectively.
Looking back at the Fairbanks history from 1930-present, the December-February record for consecutive days above 0°F is 18 days, so it looks like this may be broken soon. It's a pretty amazing achievement when you consider that any given day is about 80% likely to see 0°F or lower in December in Fairbanks (all else being equal, i.e. based on the 1981-present climatology).
As I mentioned the other day, the 3 long-term climate sites of Fairbanks, McGrath, and Bettles have never recorded such a lengthy period in winter with a combined average temperature of more than 1 standard deviation above normal. Of the 3 locations, Bettles has been the warmest relative to normal, and they haven't even seen a sub-zero temperature so far this month (see figures below). No other year in their climate record comes close to the warmth for the first 18 days of December, although of course Bettles climate data does not include December 1934 - and that remarkable month was marginally warmer than this year in Fairbanks through the 18th (but then turned colder in the last 10 days of the month).