Here we go again.
The end of January and its record 76.8 inches of snow is giving way to a February where more than a foot of snow may fall during the first weekend of the month, according to the National Weather Service Juneau.
Between four and five inches of snow fell in parts of town between Friday evening and early Saturday afternoon, and an advisory issued by the weather service at about 12:50 p.m. Saturday forecasts up to eight more inches are possible by 9 a.m. Sunday.
There was also heavy snow on the first day of February resulting from a storm that dumped about 13 inches on the city during a 24-hour period between the latter part of Wednesday, Jan. 31 — with the 6.8 inches of snow on that date allowing Juneau to set a new record — and Thursday.
As with some of the January storms, the advisory for the current storm is now both longer and for a greater amount of snow than originally forecast.
Edward Liske, a lead meteorologist for NWS Juneau, said the original winter weather advisory was until 6 p.m. Saturday. But that was extended until midnight and then again until 9 a.m. Sunday because “the deep showers of snow — more or less that’s what we’re seeing right now coming in from the gulf — is probably going to stick around through tomorrow morning.”
“We may start seeing a mix toward rain toward midday tomorrow,” he said. “It might take a little longer, depending on how strong the warm air push from the south is, because we’ve had times this season already — in fact in the last month — where the cold’s just stuck around and it stayed snow for much longer. But the general idea right now is that it’s probably going to start mixing with snow sometime tomorrow afternoon.”
While two major storms in January that totaled nearly 70 inches of snow in some areas were followed by multiple days of heavy rainfall and record-high temperatures that dissolved virtually all the accumulation in town, that isn’t likely to happen during the coming days. The extended NWS Juneau forecast through next week is for a continuing chance of snow most days, with highs in the mid-30s and lows in the mid-20s.
The 76.8 inches of snow at Juneau International Airport in January topped the previous record for the month of 75.2 inches set in 2009. But Liske said it fell well short of the all-time monthly record of 86.3 inches set in February of 1965.
If Juneau gets close to that amount near the end of the month, it’s worth noting this is a leap year and thus there is an extra day for a record (arguably with an asterisk) to be set.
• Contact Mark Sabbatini at firstname.lastname@example.org or (907) 957-2306.