Saturday, April 8, 2023

Record Cold in Spots

Cold has intensified for western and northern Alaska, with -30°F being reached in a number of spots this morning.  Most notably, Nome was one of those spots, and this ties the record for the month of April and is also the coldest on record this late in the winter.  The only previous instances of -30°F in April were April 5, 1918, and April 7, 1968.

The maps below show the lowest hourly-observed temperatures since midnight, and the minimum temperatures (e.g. as measured by ASOS instruments) can be a bit lower than these hourly numbers, as at Nome.  Click to enlarge.

Here's a roundup of some other notable low temps:

-37°F  Noatak

-36°F  Umiat RAWS

-33°F  Selawik 28E CRN

-32°F  Kivalina

-28°F  Utqiaġvik

A couple of days ago Bettles had -31°F, and Wiseman saw -32°F.  This is verging on record territory for the time of year, but it doesn't seem all that remarkable after the 2021 cold snap, which was much colder for the interior.  Read more about that here.

Reader Andy makes a good point about the increasing risk of flooding at break-up because of this cold weather, as there is a healthy snowpack across much of interior Alaska.  Rick Thoman just wrote about the snowpack on his Substack newsletter - check it out if you haven't already:

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