Tuesday’s heavy snowfall covered Juneau in a wet, heavy blanket, setting a Juneau record in the process.
The National Weather Service measured snowfall in various locations around town, and Tuesday’s snowfall far surpassed records for March 14 in many of them. The 7.4 inches that fell at the Juneau Forecast Office broke the previous record of 4.3 inches set in 2007, while the 4.7 inches of snowfall at Lena Point dwarfed the previous record of 1.1 inch, also set in 2007.
The 7.2 inches at the Juneau International Airport broke the record of 4.2 inches that was set in 1969, and the weather service stated that between Sunday and Tuesday, 20.8 inches fell at the airport.
Kimberly Vaughn, a forecaster for the weather service, said having a major downfall in March isn’t odd. There’s enough Arctic air coming down through Southeast Alaska that the weather stays just cold enough for just long enough to produce heavy snow.
“With that, we end up with a pretty good dump of snow,” Vaughn said, “but it usually doesn’t stick around. This isn’t unheard of, we just haven’t had much of a typical winter the past couple years, so maybe we’re just out of practice.”
According to the weather service’s website, Juneau had received 27 inches of snowfall this month through March 14, which is 6.5 inches above normal. Just halfway through the month, this is the most snow to fall in the month of March since 31.3 inches fell in 2009. The snowiest March in Juneau history was in 2007, when 62.7 inches fell.
That much snow isn’t expected to fall this month, as Vaughn said this week’s snow serves as the one big “dump” of snow that seems to come every couple of years in March.
“And it didn’t disappoint,” Vaughn said, laughing.