Already this month, a series of storms moving through southern Alaska has buffeted Anchorage with a lot of rain and wind. There was a huge wind storm earlier in the month that brought down power lines as winds gusted well past 100 mph in spots. Another big storm hit over the weekend bringing over an inch of rain and a round of strong winds, and today another storm is pounding the area. Here is a midday satellite picture of the area.
Today's storm as of midday had already brought over 1.40 inches of rain to Seward and over an inch to Kneai. As you can see by the satellite picture, moisture is being brought north from much lower latitudes right up into south-central Alaska. The current rainy weather will diminish some tonight and winds diminish, but the next storm is not that far away. The same satellite picture shows it nicely over the western Aleutians and the surface map shows a well-developed 996 mb low.
This storm is likely to spread more rain, some heavy, back into the area tomorrow into early tomorrow night. I don't think this will be quite as windy of a storm, but more downpours could cause some local flooding problems.
Are we done then? No! Yet another pretty good storm looks on track for Friday night into Saturday, and this one too may be accompanied by locally strong and damaging winds and pretty hefty rain amounts. Yet another storm is forecast to arrive next Tuesday.
So far this month, 2.79 inches of rain has fallen in Anchorage as of midnight last night. That was well above the normal of 1.81 inches. The normal amount of rain for the entire month is 2.99 inches, and that will be easily surpassed before we get much past the weekend.
Many think of Alaska as the Great White North. Though very true for quite a few months, right now this part of Alaska can be thought of as the Great Muddy North.
A prolonged rain-free pattern is setting in.
By this time in 1998 there was twice as much rain that had occurred to date compared to 2015-2016.
Could an unusual El Nino precipitation pattern be as simple as looking at the state of water temperatures?
One thing that I find interesting is that the pattern since fall has not been your typical El Nino storm pattern.
There are signs of a possible stormier pattern beginning the week of Jan. 18.
The cumulative effect of the series of storms will mean flooding, mudslides and debris flows are going to be a problems for much of the week