Alaska Struggling By way of Some Intense Chilly And There Is No Reduction Coming Anytime Quickly – ?

By Paul Dorian

12Z GEFS forecast map of imply 850 millibar temperature anomalies in Alaska for the following 5-days. Map courtesy NOAA,


Temperatures have already peaked as we speak in Fairbanks, Alaska and are at present proper across the zero diploma mark and they’re very prone to keep beneath zero throughout the whole time for a minimum of the following 7 days or so. Actually, low temperatures this weekend are prone to be close to 25 levels beneath zero within the midst of an on-going intense chilly spell that will final proper into December.  Whereas Alaska is generally fairly chilly this time of 12 months, these temperatures are properly beneath regular in lots of instances and likewise fairly a bit totally different from latest years. Some spots are prone to find yourself with their coldest November on document.

King Salmon, Alaska has suffered by 13 straight days with intense chilly and temperatures ranging anyplace from 15 levels to 31 levels beneath regular (temperature departures from regular boxed in pink). This month could be very doubtless going to develop into the coldest November on document for this southern Alaskan city. Information courtesy NOAA/NWS.


A few of the latest winter seasons in Alaska have been warmer-than-normal, however this 12 months is getting off to a really totally different begin with persistent intense chilly within the forty ninth state. This isn’t your typical chilly for Alaska and a few spots are liable to finish up with their coldest month of November ever recorded. 

Sea floor temperatures to the south and west of Alaska are colder-than-normal this 12 months (proper plot) whereas one 12 months in the past (left plot), and in lots of latest years, they have been working at warmer-than-normal ranges. Information courtesy Canadian Met Centre

In Fairbanks, temperatures are prone to keep beneath zero from later Tuesday by a minimum of the following 7 days or so.  The traditional excessive temperature in Fairbanks this time of 12 months is +8 levels (F) and -10 levels (F) is the traditional low and this upcoming weekend might characteristic temperatures bottoming out at 25 levels beneath zero. One other instance of the relentless chilly comes from King Salmon (Bristol Bay area of southern Alaska) the place the typical each day temperature has ranged from 15 levels to 31 levels beneath regular for 13 straight days. Actually, it appears to be like fairly sure that this can end up because the coldest November on document in King Salmon as aid shouldn’t be anticipated anytime quickly.  Quite a few Alaska cities have skilled document low temperatures this week together with Bethel, Cordova and Alyeska with two days in every location and Homer with three days this week of document low temperatures.   

Sea ice has responded to the extraordinary chilly with its best advance this early within the season since 2012. Plot reveals Chukchi autumn ice-over date for the reason that late 1970’s (Information courtesy NSIDC)

Alaska’s greatest metropolis, Anchorage, shouldn’t be escaping the extraordinary chilly with Tuesday’s temperatures within the single digits and prone to peak close to the +10 diploma (F) mark. The traditional excessive temperature in Anchorage on this date is +26 levels (F) and the traditional in a single day low is +15 levels (F). Actually, temperatures this weekend are prone to backside out close to 15 levels beneath zero which is 30 levels beneath the traditional for this time of 12 months.

Sea ice has responded to the extraordinary chilly with its best advance this early within the season since 2012. Plot reveals Bering Sea ice extent since October 1st of 2021 (Information courtesy NSIDC)

One of many doubtless causes of the extraordinary chilly being skilled this month in Alaska is the colder-than-normal water sitting off the west and southern coastlines.  This space of colder-than-normal water has been fairly persistent in latest months and is kind of a dramatic change from latest winters.  Final 12 months and in a few of the prior winter seasons, the water was fairly a bit warmer-than-normal within the northeastern a part of the Pacific Ocean – doubtless enjoying a giant function in a few of the latest warmer-than-normal winters in Alaska. 

With the persistent and intense chilly and the colder-than-normal water temperatures, sea ice has responded accordingly and has grown fairly quickly – in some instances to its best extent this early within the season since 2012.  For instance, “ice-over” within the Chukchi Sea has already exceeded 95% of the basin which is the earliest on this date since 2012 and a few 4 or 5 weeks sooner than the previous 9 years.  The Bering Sea ice extent can be off to its quickest begin for this early within the winter season since 2012.

Meteorologist Paul Dorian

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