After 12 days without precipitation, Juneau will experience a “significant snow event Friday night and into Saturday morning,” National Weather Service meteorologist Wes Adkins said.
The service isn’t sure yet how much snow Juneau can expect, “but it potentially could be a good bit,” he said. And while “it’s been a beautiful string of days, for sure,” Adkins said, Friday’s snow is expected to change to rain Saturday.
The service is predicting this weekend’s to be the last big snow of winter, but they could be wrong, he said.
As far as rain-free records go, Juneau had 21 days straight without precipitation in 1979 and 20 days in 1996.
The clear weather created the 14th driest February on record, according to the National Weather Service, which measured 1.98 inches of precipitation at Juneau International Airport. That figure was 2.15 inches below normal.
Despite the dry February, Juneau finished the month more than two inches above normal precipitation for the year, thanks to an abnormally soggy January.
While rain was sparse in February, snow wasn’t. The airport station measured 26.8 inches of snow — 10 inches more than normal.
With average temperatures 6.2 degrees below normal, that snow was drier than normal for Juneau and — when melted — meant less precipitation than typical.
Through the first four days of March, the below-normal temperatures have continued as clear skies create chilly nights. Temperatures are averaging 8 ½ degrees below normal, a trend expected to stop as cloud cover returns.
So far this winter, Juneau has seen 90.8 inches of snow, more than a foot above normal and almost 30 inches above the same date last year.