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Interior Alaska temperature remains above normal for a second month

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Posted: Saturday, May 15, 2010 3:37 pm | Updated: 1:38 pm, Wed Dec 26, 2012.

FAIRBANKS - Monthly April means were above average in the panhandle, north, Interior and the west, while temperatures averaged slightly below normal for the southwest. Precipitation conditions for the month showed a pattern of wetter-than-normal conditions across most of Alaska and drier-than-normal conditions in the southeast.

Mild temperatures throughout April in Fairbanks hastened the snowmelt, which presented a full week earlier than expected. The mean temperature for the month was 39.4 degrees Fahrenheit, 6.8 degrees above the mean. The high temperature was 68 F on April 28, and the low was 9 F on April 9. In April, 0.29 inches of precipitation was measured, 38 percent greater than normal. Only a trace of snow fell throughout the month, and the seasonal snowpack went from 10 inches on April 1 to less than or equal to one inch by April 15. Winds averaged 4.1 mph at Fairbanks International Airport, and the highest gust was 32 mph on April 10.

The average temperature in Big Delta was 35.6 degrees Fahrenheit, 3.5 degrees above the mean for April. The highest temperature was 65 F on April 28, and the low of 4 F was reported on April 10. Precipitation recorded was 0.79 inches, close to four times the normal amount of 0.20 inches.

In Anchorage the average temperature was 36.9 degrees Fahrenheit, just 0.4 degrees off the monthly mean. The high and low temperatures were 61 F on April 27 and 20 on April 7. Precipitation totaled 1.21 inches, over twice the normal amount for April, and snowfall totaled 14.1 inches, over three times the average of 4.1 inches. The seasonal snowpack went from 13 inches on April 1 down to a trace by April 22. Winds averaged 6.4 mph, and the highest reported gust was 39 mph.

The average temperature in Nome was 20 degrees Fahrenheit, near normal for April. The high reached 43 on April 18, and the low was minus 11 on April 8. Precipitation was recorded on 26 out of the 30 days and totaled 0.72 inches, 11 percent above normal. Snowfall totaled 11.6 inches, which is 59 percent more than normal for the month. Winds averaged 8.1 mph, with a peak gust of 51 mph on April 10.

Temperatures were much higher than normal for the third month in a row in Barrow. The average temperature for April was 7.9 degrees Fahrenheit, 8.5 degrees higher than the long term mean. The high was 29 F on April 23, and the low was minus 25 on April 10. Precipitation was also above normal at 0.37 inches, over three times the normal recorded amount of 0.12 inches. Snowfall reported in April was 8.1 inches, four times the average, making this the fourth-snowiest April on record and the sixth month in a row that above-normal snowfall has been recorded in Barrow. A record 5.4 inches of snow fell on April 21, breaking the old record of just one inch, and the water equivalent, 0.28 inches, broke the old record of 0.06 inches, set in 1970. Winds averaged 11.5 mph, and the peak gust was 36 mph on April 30.

Juneau recorded slightly above normal temperatures, precipitation and snowfall in April. The average temperature was 41.9 degrees Fahrenheit, 1.1 degree above the mean, and the high and low temperatures were 66 on April 27 and 24 on April 10. Precipitation was just 4 percent higher than normal, measuring 3.08 inches. Snowfall occurred for one week in April, April 3 through April 9, producing 2.8 inches, almost three times the normal monthly amount. Winds at Juneau International Airport averaged about 5.3 mph, and a gust of 36 mph was reported on April 3.

In King Salmon, the average temperature was 30.9 degrees Fahrenheit, 2.1 degrees below the average for April. The high temperature for the month was 54 on April 26 and 27, and the low was zero degrees on April 9. Precipitation measured 1.09 inches, 16 percent higher than normal, and snowfall totaled 5.9 inches, 34 percent higher than the monthly mean. Winds at King Salmon Airport averaged 9.1 mph, and the highest gust was recorded at 55 mph on April 10.

Temperature was normal in Ketchikan, 43.3 degrees Fahrenheit. The high and low temperatures were 60 on April 15 and 29 on April 9. Precipitation totaled 4.75 inches, which is just under half of the April average of 9.57 inches. There were a total of 24 days with precipitation during the month, and the highest one-day total was 1.32 inches on April 6. Winds at Ketchikan International Airport averaged 7 mph, and the peak gust of 38 mph was recorded on April 1.

This information consists of preliminary climatological data compiled by the Alaska Climate Research Center, Geophysical Institute, University of Alaska Fairbanks. For more information on weather and climatology, contact the center at 474-7885 or visit the center web site at http://akclimate.org. Please report any errors to webmaster@akclimate.org.

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