Alaska June 19, 2019
It Was Hotter In Alaska This Spring Than It Has Been In Over 54 Years
Alaska has been breaking records for hottest spring! This past spring in Alaska held the March record for warmest temperatures in over 54 years, all over the state. After a series of warmer springs in recent years, 2019 is one for the record books!
Normally, you ask any Alaskan about what they would think about an unseasonably early warm spring, and they would be ecstatic!
This spring's temperatures, especially in March, were created by a high pressure ridge. Essentially the warm air gets trapped, and this March it was trapped for over two weeks over Alaska!
Even though warm temperatures normally would be welcomed with open arms after a long, cold winter, there are a lot of drawbacks to the early spring warmth.
There are challenges for hunters trying to get food, as well as regular travel routes melted across usually frozen rivers. Warm weather like this usually also heralds a high wildfire risk in the summer.
There are also the challenges of the melting sea ice.
Sea ice usually cools the Arctic region. When the sea ice melts, the ocean absorbs the sunlight instead of the ice reflecting it back into the atmosphere. This results in a feedback loop, where the area continues to grow warmer each season.
March of 2019 was officially the warmest March in 54 years, averaging 27 degrees statewide.
That is a 4 degree increase from the previous record in 1965. Not only that, but many cities in Alaska like Juneau, Gulkana, and Kotzebue all broke single day's records at least 8 times or more.
In March, Alaska recorded its earliest 70 degree F temperature.
Klawok, AK hit 70 degrees F on March 19th. This is the earliest date ever recorded anywhere in Alaska for that temperature. Previously the record was March 31st, almost two weeks later.
These unseasonably warm temperatures are changing many aspects of Alaskan life.
Wildlife, like the walruses in Point Lay, are now congregating on beaches instead of sea ice. The small town of Akiak saw major flooding and over 100 feet of riverbank erosion, which could eventually turn the city into an island.
Alaska is a beautiful place to play when its is warm in the summer.
And if the weather holds up the way it has been, it will be a banner summer to get out and have fun in the Alaskan wilderness. Just make sure to safely enjoy the outdoors, and be mindful of any campfires you start.
Have you noticed that Alaska has been breaking records for hottest spring? What do you think? Let us know in the comments below!
If weather is going to stay this nice, make sure to add these
26 Activities To Add To Your Alaska Bucket List This Summer!