Climate Highlights and Other News

December 2018

May - October 2018 Alaska Climate Dispatch    

In this issue

  • Early Season Snow
  • Climate and Weather Summary
  • Drought in Alaska's Rainforest
  • Sea Ice
  • News & Events

November 2018

Snowy November in Eagle    

While much of Alaska has had limited snowfall in the autumn, that has not been the case everywhere. At Eagle, 24.5" (62.2cm) of snow was reported. This is twice the normal November snowfall and the most since 2010. The 10.0" (25.4cm) of snow on November 21 was just shy of the November calendar day record of 11.0" (27.9cm) that fell on November 23, 1924. 

Another Mild Autumn at Utqiaġvik (Barrow)    

With an average temperature of 23.0°F (-5.0°C),  this was the sixth mildest fall (September through November) of record at Utqiaġvik (Barrow). The typical autumn is now 10F (5.6C) warmer than in the 1970s, and seven of the ten warmest have occurred since 2005. The increase in temperature is strongly correlated with the decrease in autumn sea ice. Climate observations have been made without a break at Utqiaġvik since October 1920. 

Warmest Autumn of Record at Nome    

2018 brought Nome the warmest autumn in more than a century of climate observations. The average temperature for September through November was 36.9°F (2.7°C) which was 7.4°F (4.1°C) above normal. The previous warmest autumn was in 1926, when the average temperature was 36.3°F (2.4°C).

Warmest November of Record at Cold Bay    

The average temperature at Cold Bay in November of 39.7°F (4.3°C) is the highest of record. The previous previous warmest Novembers were 2017 and 1985. Climate obsvervations at Cold Bay began in 1950, with four of nine warmest Novembers having occurred since 2013.  

Record Warm Autumn in Bethel    

This was the warmest autumn (September through November) of record in Bethel. The average temperature of 38.6°F (3.7°C) is 7.5°F (4.2°C) above normal and 2.2°F (1.2°C) warmer than the previous warmest autumn which occurred in 2002. Climate observations have been made in Bethel since the early 1920s.  

Record Warm Autumn in Anchorage    

2018 was the warmest autumn (September through November) of record in Anchorage. The average temperature for the autumn was 43.3°F (6.3°C). This is 8.1°F (4.5°C) above normal and easily exceeded the previous record warm autumn of 42.2°F (5.7°C) set in 1979. During the three months the daily average temperature was above normal on 84 of the 91 days. 

October 2018

Longest Growing Season at Bethel    

The temperature dropped to freezing at Bethel for the first time in the autumn on October 19, the latest first freeze of record and ending the longest growing season of record. The 155 days between freezing temperatures easily exceed the previous record of 146 days set in 2007. 

Record Warm October at Sitka    

At Sitka, 27 of the 31 days in October were warmer than normal, and the month finished up with an average temperature of 50.6°F (10.3°C). This equals the average temperature of October 1986 as the warmest of record at Sitka. Climate observations have been made at Sitka since the mid-1940s. 

Record Warm October at Yakutat    

Rains returned to the eastern Gulf of Alaska coast during October and consistently mild temperatures persisted. At Yakutat, the average October temperature for the month of 46.5°F (8.1°C) is the warmest of record, exceeding the previous record of 45.9°F (7.7°C) set in 1980. Climate observations have been made at Yakutat with only a few breaks since 1917. 

Alaska Center for Climate Assessment & Policy

2160 Koyukuk Drive, PO Box 757245  |  Fairbanks, AK 99775-7245 map  |   tel 907-474-7812  |  fax 907-474-5662  |  Email

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