Browsed by
Month: December 2017

Sub zero weather as High Pressure holds

Sub zero weather as High Pressure holds

Here it is  temperatures starting to drop  down the ole thermometer. Hit 18 below  last night and high got up to -6. Day was sort of an lazy day with grey sky and  few lazy snowflakes falling  but tonight we have  broken over cast with moon showing time to time.  At the moment we are sitting in between  2  1045mb  highs with couple troughs  stretching  from the west coast over the interior into the Yukon.  Te Yukon HP is dominating the eastern have of the state with  White Pass  expect with winds of  40 gusting to 55. Dropping the wind chill  down around 30 below.  Took on fuel  many a day at Skagway  with those temps and wind  blowing across the car deck.  Hard to keep  stuff   thawed with  that chill  on the overhead piping but we managed to prevent freeze ups and all with out heat tapes. They are an no no on ships.

The 1045 mb over Siberia is keeping the west coast cold  but not like the interior. There the temps  under marine influences  are above zero  and few places into the teens. That may change when that high slides east.  Surface charts  show some pretty tight gradients  south of the Chain so  there are some gale force winds blowing there.

On the  NWS TV show  they show  Northway hitting 30 below to  tonight and  tomorrow  night they are suppose to hit minus 40.  By the way North way is on the same plateau that saw the coldest temps ever recorded in North America. Chilly night that was  in Snag Creek, YK.


Today temps at 2330 hours :  -6.1 F

Humidity  77 %

DWPT  -11 F

Wind  1 mph gusting 4 from the ESE

Barometer 30.47 “/hg and  showing falling trend.

Soil temperature @ 18 ”  32 Deg. F


Well folks that all for now

Stay safe  stay warm  and keep an log on the fire.



Tanana Jet turns on

Tanana Jet turns on

Well this  past week has been  mild for us here at the homestead as the Tanana jet  kicks in the  down slope winds.  Temperatures  been in the  20’s  with breezes  up to 20 KTS.  But down in the  hole as I call it with the inversion  building in ( 1055mb ) Fairbanks was different story.   Wife needed some supplies for her fat pill making so we drove to Fairbanks to get them. It was  21 above at the cabin. ten miles up the Rich it was at 11 deg and in an space of  1/2 mile it dropped to 11 below zero. as we drove by   Eilsen it was 2 below and then it  dropped to  8 below at North Pole. On into Fairbanks where once again it was down to  11 below. That is a bit of an  drop in temp. Between  Cleary summit and the airport there was an 45 deg difference.   This inversion  is common  during the winter and  allows for those  cold temps seen here in late December and January.  During the coldest days it not uncommon to see the barometer well over 31 inches of mercury. In fact  few years  back all but one airport  closed to IFR rules and were on VFR rules only as an huge high settled in over Alaska before it  moved south. Temperature were seen around the state in minus 60 to minus 70  below. here to day we hit -5 at 0730 and since then warmed up to 2 above.  Fairbanks is showing -9.

Out on the coast another  nasty storm came ashore with 85 mph winds  damaging several  villages.  On Kuskokwim bay the  village  of Quinhagak  reported winds reaching 85 mph (137 kph) Friday morning causing power outage for half an day . One resident reported cars sliding off the road and plywood flying around. Also one home  that was  partially constructed was ripped off its foundation. The village fuel pumps where also damage  causing  stove oil and gasoline to be ration.  Over in Platinum several homes reported minor damage. The radio station from bethel was unable to reach Goodnews bay  to check on damages there.  Further  north along the coast high winds , heavy snow and blowing snow was the order of the day.

Our present weather here in the Interior for the week is going to be ruled  by high pressure (1030 mb) until it drifts ne over into the NWT and allows for low pressure to fill in as an new high over Siberia builds. That high will most likely  bring cooler temps then what we been seeing.


Today weather  @ 1400 hr

Temperature 1.9 F

Humidity 74%

Wind  0 from the east

DWPT  -4

Soil Temperature @ 18 inches  32 deg.

Sun to low to get solar reading.


Until next time

Stay warm and Healthy.

Keep log on the fire and candle in the window.




Here something to think about


Short Day Today But Tomorrow will be slightly longer

Short Day Today But Tomorrow will be slightly longer

Well here we are at the shortest day of the year. Picture was shot at high noon here to show the sun height as we see it here. 3 hours and 41  minutes in Fairbanks. Sun rise 1047 here and sunset was at 1444 today.  Not much heat coming from that low angles. Solar panels on the  Wx station struggle to charge up the super cap during the day. At least so far no -40 to shut down  the Davis stations. Still shopping around to find an wireless station that will not quit at -40. Everything I have found is either wired  or the transmitter quit at the above  temps. back in the old analog days Davis VP2 measure temps down to -80 before the battery died up at Jim’s creek camp on the Dalton.

Anyway Monday saw an 945 mb  low chewing it way up the  Bering  Sea producing 70 kt plus  winds. That same storm is now  headed toward Wrangel Island  and NW away from Alaska but behind it there was coastal erosion, blizzard condx all along the SW and Western Coast of Alaska. Most of the week been  winter storm warning  for  Northern  Alaska  and the north slope. On the Dalton  heavy snow conditions ended up  having 2 semi’s stuck with highway crews having to dig them out. Highway department close the road till conditions improved.

The Kodiak low was at work  producing  storms to  keep the south coast wet and some areas freezing rain. While here in the  shadow of the Alaskan range we saw mostly flurries. Fairbanks and north saw  snow up to 12 inches in places. Last storm  snow was around us  but we only got 2.5  inches compared to what was falling  North and south of us.

Looks like we are going to have an dry and sunny week end from the forecast.

Strong high pressure over the Copper River Basin and southern
Yukon Territory will build north over the NE Interior and Beaufort
Sea Fri. This is now causing strong southerly gap winds through
Alaska Range passes that will continue into Sat. This is also
causing south winds through Brooks Range passes that will continue
through Sat. This will This will cause a moderately strong Tanana
Valley Jet to develop Fri and continue through the weekend, and
can expect NE winds to 20 kt over the Elliot Highway to develop
Fri as well.

So far no wind advisory here  in the Harding Lake area. Most generally they start around the Birch lake area  about 8 miles south of here.

Was looking to get out and do some Ice fishing  but  due to the mild temps we been having it not safe to even try. Salcha river has open leads on it were normally it frozen over this time of year. In fact I heard an air boat running up it the other day from the cabin.

Guess this all for now

Stay well and keep an log on the fire and light in the window



Getting back to normal??

Getting back to normal??

Well after hitting  from 40 to as high as 45 deg last few days  during the Chinooks we are starting to drop again in temps but not below the zero mark yet. That might come later this week. The PNA path has shifted. Of course it is still  going to a degree back east.

Picked up 2.5 inches of snow last night and have 12.5 inches on the ground.  The snoweater  got the snow total down from 14 ” to 10″. Need all the snow pack we can get now to keep the  brush  from getting tinder  dry in April and May before the summer rains  start.

Last night on NWS  Alaska weather  show they had some interesting charts showing  the weather pass couple weeks covering the state. The Bethel and Kuskukim area in SW Alaska extending up along the  Coast to Hooper Bay and almost in to Nome and inland to around McGrath  they showed  it been Warmer  and wetter.  Even SEAK was dryer then what that area has been.  That  is where all the big storms been tracking  up along as they go up the Bering.

Here looks like  some small Chinook winds  from the gaps in the Alaska range  during this cool down period. Some  snow will be seen thru out the interior.

Wx here today has been  little cool and mostly cloudy. Spent afternoon out  removing the snow out of the driveway to my snow dump before it sets up and starts to ice.

Temperature  24 F

Wind  ENE @ 2 Gusting 5

Humidity 90%

Dew Point 22 F

Pressure  29.42 and falling


Until later Stay well and  keep an log on the fire and candle in the window.



Here map of my area in real time if  anyone wants to track  temps etc.

My  station is  DW1453 or D1453 on the map.


Warm coming for the next week or so

Warm coming for the next week or so

My featured picture  was last year at this time and into January. Glad had the old analog thermometer as the new stuff on market  shuts down at that temp. Davis  and all the new digital PWS are completely useless after we hit 39.5 deg.  below zero. Modern electronics. They just don’t operate in the cold and military grade  equipment is out of sight unless your rich. 5-8 grand for PWS stations  that will operate in those extremes.

Anyways  so far this year the coldest been -23 here at the cabin and -27 in Fairbanks. Today we hit 35 above again and  starting to lose our spring time fire insurance fast as the downslope winds hit up the  atmosphere. From the forecast look at things for next week it is all down hill for snowpack.

An long wave  trough  over the Bering Sea  and eastern Siberia and  a ridge over Western Canada  continues to pump warm southernly flow into  Alaska. Juneau hit 54 degrees yesterday tying an old record.  With several short waves coming over the the Alaska ranges  in the next week   it will bringing  rain, freezing rains  and some snow to the Brooks. At the present times the GFS and ECMF are out of agreement and  forecaster are leaning more to the GFS.

High Wind warnings are up from Dot Lake thru to Tanacross starting this evening. Southernly flow is expected to drop some over night and increase speeds again durning the Day and speed aroud 80 to 85 mph are to be seen.  Delta Junction to my south (45 miles from me as crow flies) will be seening wind gusting upto 70 mph. The strong downslope winds will keep the chance of precip low  out to Tuesday evening. Then in the lull brif chance of freezing rain or snow.

Out on the coast during this time period  blizzard condx and blowing snow in expected. Up on the north slope Winter warning and blowing slow from the easterly winds. Wed. and Thurs. may see Blizzard conditions form as the eastly increases to 30 to 40 mph.

Storm track for last week been across the Gulf the n it takes the Pacific/North America  track so hold on to your hats East coast  an bit of Alaskan weather coming your way.

Till next time

Keep an log on the fire and Stay well


More Heavy snow for Valdez/ Thompson Pass Area

More Heavy snow for Valdez/ Thompson Pass Area

Another  24 inches  forecast for  that area  in next 24 hours as the atmospheric river  continues to  pump moisture into the area.  For those  would  don’t live along the coast   it is some thing to experience.  It  the same as lake effect snows. Fast  build up. Here one link to  news Article.

They avalanche  area has been reopen  but rain  has made roads bad in that area.


Last night we had  brief  Chinook  condx. Hit 37 degrees and got most the snow cleared off the roof  as it warmed enough to break the to keep cabin  from going up in wildfire.cohesion on the metal  roof coverage.  No shingle here in the  country. One way to keep cabin loss down in wildfire.

Anchorage are is getting hit with snow and freezing rain.    other then  what I reported it been  quiet  on the home front. Just warmer then normal temps to be expected thru remainer of the week and continue into the next.

keep an log on the fire.






Road close due to snow conditions

Road close due to snow conditions

Here is excert from Daily news miner.


#ndn-video-player-1.ndn_embedded .ndn_floatContainer { margin-top: 10px; margin-bottom: 20px; }#ndn-video-player-2.ndn_embedded .ndn_floatContainer { margin-top: 10px; margin-bottom: 20px; }FAIRBANKS – An avalanche has closed the Richardson Highway at Thompson Pass between Miles 12-42, according to the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities.

A winter storm with extreme snowfall — 15 inches fell in 90 minutes in Valdez — is making travel hazardous south of the Alaska Range today. The avalanche occurred at Mile 39 about 3:30 a.m., according to DOT. It is about 200 feet long and 20 feet deep.

DOT crews are trying to keep up with the snowfall on the Richardson, Edgerton and Glenn highways, although the area of the Richardson that is closed will remain so until avalanche danger has been mitigated.

The storm, which has dumped 40 inches of snow so far, is forecast to bring nearly 4 feet of snow to Thompson Pass, where the Richardson Highway crosses the Chugach mountain range. The storm is accompanied by unseasonably warm temperatures, with rain mixing with wet snow, creating icy surfaces.

According to DOT, a drive that normally takes 15 minutes in Tazlina, south of Glennallen, took nearly an hour this morning. Power outages have been reported in the Copper River area and local schools are closed.

Another weather front is expected Thursday, which could bring additional heavy snow to Thompson Pass and snow and rain to Valdez.

and here is another:

45 inches of snow forecast for Thompson Pass

  • By Sam Friedman
  • Dec 6, 2017 Updated 4 hrs ago
#ndn-video-player-1.ndn_embedded .ndn_floatContainer { margin-top: 10px; margin-bottom: 20px; }#ndn-video-player-2.ndn_embedded .ndn_floatContainer { margin-top: 10px; margin-bottom: 20px; }

FAIRBANKS — Today is forecast to be a snowy day in Valdez and Thompson Pass, even by the standards of one of the snowiest parts of the country.

A winter storm warning issued Tuesday afternoon predicts Valdez will get between 2 and 3 feet of snow between 9 p.m. Tuesday and 9 p.m. today. The National Weather Service predicts nearly 4 feet could fall at the top of Thompson Pass, where the Richardson Highway crosses the Chugach Range.

The combination of heavy snow and wind along the summits will make travel through the pass extremely difficult.

Thompson Pass frequently gets massive snow dumps; it takes 2 feet of snow in the forecast for the Weather Service to issue a warning there. By comparison, in the dry climate around Fairbanks, the Weather Service issues a warning when 8 inches of snow are forecast, said Jim Brader, a meteorologist with the service.

The Interior also is forecast to get some snow today. One to 3 inches of snow are forecast in Fairbanks. The precipitation is expected to be heavier to the south and east, with 4-7 inches possible in Delta Junction and 8-16 inches at Isabel Pass, south of Delta Junction, where the Richardson Highway passes through the Alaska Range.

 Contact Outdoors Editor Sam Friedman at 459-7545. Follow him on Twitter: @FDNMoutdoors

Kevin you might just recognize the milepost mention in here as you said you were involved with an study in that area.

so far we been lucky only 1.5 inches here.


And into December

And into December

Well  November history here and  we stayed at the  8th snowy month . Two big storms in the Bering as they swept along the chain.  The first really bombed out with an drop of 55 mb in 24 hours with  winds gusting to 95 knots at Adak and Attu. The  second one hot on it heels  still pushed it  with winds gusting  over 75 knots.  %0 foot seas in the  bomb and the second had 45 foot seas. Lot of fun sailing in the chain in the winter on the  Dutch/Adak run. Temperature high for Nov @ Fairbanks was 30 deg with the low coming in at -29. Here  350 feet higher the low was -27 and  my high was 30 above.

So far December been warm compared to the  standard temps we  mostly see. Pass 2 days we have had a high 0f 35  with temps staying 30 or better late into the night due to Chinook winds as the Tanana Jet became active again. 50  MPH with gusting to 70 at Delta Junction as the winds  flowed over the Alaska Range from the south.

Under an winter storm advisory here. 10-20 inches of snow expected along an trough that runs from Fairbanks  south to the coast. Thompson pass  can get possible up to 30 inches  according to TV WX.  In that area  an warning is up and travel on the Richerson from Isbel Pass  south to Valdez is not advise. Here excert from forecast discussion.

Central and Eastern Interior: A front moving north over the
Interior will bring a quick round of snowfall tonight into
Wednesday for areas north and west of Fairbanks snowfall from
this system will generally be one to two inches. A strong push of
moisture from the south is expected to bring significant snowfall
to the eastern Alaska Range beginning tonight. Current NAM and GFS
differ from previous runs in that they all have significantly
lower QPF values along the Parks Highway corridor from Denali NP
northward to Fairbanks. The ECMWF does have more QPF along this
corridor; however we didn’t favor it since it is somewhat of an
outlier. The current NAM run actually keeps all of the snow east
of Fairbanks while the current GFS still brings in some. Our
afternoon forecast package will contain significantly lower PoPs
over Fairbanks than inherited from the previous shift. Snowfall
with this push of moisture will end Wednesday night. Another front
will move northward across the Interior Thursday night into early
Friday; however the models have difference in timing of this
feature at this point. At any rate it will bring a few inches of


It has been modify from the earlier  discussion but we will just have to see.


0100 here and temp is still at 33 deg. F

Humidity 69%

Dwpt  24 F

Wind 2 kts from the east  gusting  5

Well hope everyone had good turkey day

Stay well, stay warm and keep an log on the fire.




By the way that the noon day sun in the photo. 4 hour and 45 minutes of daylight  now. By the 21 th we will be down to 3 hour 45 minutes.