Alaska December 12, 2017
The Snowiest Town In The Nation Is Right Here In Alaska
On December 9, 2017, Valdez experienced the snowstorm of a lifetime. The incredibly heavy snowfall hit the coastal town and the mountains above, steadily dumping heavy, wet snow for an hour and a half. It turns out that this is one of the most extreme snowfalls on record.
Valdez lies on the Prince William Sound, and then out to the Gulf of Alaska and the Pacific Ocean. The jet stream pushed a stream of warm, moist Pacific air northward and it collided directly into the mountains in Valdez.
Valdez is considered the snowiest town in the U.S., getting over 300 inches a year. In the mountains 2,678 feet above, the Thompson Pass is the snowiest reporting station in the nation at 600 to 900 inches per year.
Previous heavy snowfall records were set near the Great Lakes, but this snowfall took the crown at 15 inches in 90 minutes as heaviest snowfall in an hour in U.S. history!
Some people were stoked because this was the first heavy snowfall of the year. For the outdoor skiing and snowboarding enthusiasts, it was an epic day on the slopes!
The epic powder makes Valdez and the surrounding mountains a winter tourist destination for helicopter skiing and sight-seeing tours of the stunning views.
Thank you to Total Heliski for these beautiful photos.
The Richardson Highway was already closed when the snowfall occurred due to an avalanche earlier that day. The 15 inches of heavy, wet snow fell lightening fast and road crews could barely keep leave the parking lot during the storm. But they soon had the Richardson Highway under control after the snowfall slowed down.
Watch the KTNN News Coverage, posted Saturday December 9, 2017 at 7:09 PM:
You will want to do these
10 Unforgettable Things In Alaska That Everyone Must Do This Winter. To learn more about Valdez, A Massive Blizzard Blanketed Alaska In Snow In 1952 And It Will Never Be Forgotten.
Were you in the middle of the intense snowfall? Tell us about it in the comments below.