Snow blankets the landscape along the Montana Creek Trail Saturday. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)

Snow blankets the landscape along the Montana Creek Trail Saturday. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)

14.3 inches of snow in Juneau sets new record

Total recorded over 24 hours at airport, breaks 1967 mark of 9 inches for Feb. 24.

Juneau didn’t just surpass a 56-year-old snowfall record over the course of Friday, it obliterated it by 5.3 inches, according to the National Weather Service in Juneau.

From midnight to midnight on Friday, a total of 14.3 inches of snow was recorded at Juneau International Airport, which trounces the record of 9 inches for Feb. 24 set back in 1967.

“We smashed it out of the park,” said Edward Liske, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Juneau, who noted an additional 1.3 inches of snowfall was recorded at the airport after midnight for a storm total of 15.6 inches.

That seemed to be the most reported for the Juneau area, Liske said, with totals around 9 inches reported in downtown Juneau and the Mendenhall Valley, a foot reported Out the Road and a little over a foot reported at Eaglecrest Ski Area. Reports also peg it for the most in Southeast Alaska, Liske said, with the Southern Panhandle not seeing much snow at all, 4-8 inches reported in Wrangell and Petersburg and 8 inches reported in Gustavus.

“It looks lie Juneau was the bull’s-eye for the big snow amounts,” Liske said.

In light of the relatively gaudy snowfall totals, Juneauites may feel fortunate that flakes that fell were on the fluffier side of the spectrum. Liske said that’s due to temperatures in the 20s. The heavier stuff falls when temperatures are near freezing.

A berm along Montana Creek Road nears the 3-foot mark on a post. According to National Weather Service in Juneau, a total of 14.3 inches of snow was recorded at Juneau International Airport from midnight to midnight Friday, which is a new recorded snowfall high for Feb. 24. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)

A berm along Montana Creek Road nears the 3-foot mark on a post. According to National Weather Service in Juneau, a total of 14.3 inches of snow was recorded at Juneau International Airport from midnight to midnight Friday, which is a new recorded snowfall high for Feb. 24. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)

“The dryer, fluffier snowfall usually occurs when we have the colder temperatures,” Liske said. “These snowflakes actually form in a drier and colder environment, so they didn’t quite moisten up as much as our heavier, wetter stuff.”

Liske said some snow showers are expected around the Panhandle for the rest of the day, but cold weather and clear skies are expected for at least the next few days.

But after Tuesday night, more snow seems to be in Juneau’s future.

“We have a few days break to hopefully dig out before the next one starts pummelling us again,” Liske said.

A young tree bows under the weight of snow along the Montana Creek Trail Saturday. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)

A young tree bows under the weight of snow along the Montana Creek Trail Saturday. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)

Contact Ben Hohenstatt at bhohenstatt@juneauempire.com or (907)308-4895. Follow him on Twitter at @BenHohenstatt.

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