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2016 October Monthly Report


Highlights

Seasonal maintenance on the Denali highway, Taylor Highway and the new road to Tanana ended on October 1st. The glacial dam above the Skilak Lake broke on the 6th. No significant impacts were reported on the lake, or downstream on the Kenai River, which did rise a couple feet and crested on the 11th. The glacial dam traditionally breaks in late fall every other year.

Seasonal maintenance on the Denali highway, Taylor Highway and the new road to Tanana ended on October 1st. The glacial dam above the Skilak Lake broke on the 6th. No significant impacts were reported on the lake, or downstream on the Kenai River, which did rise a couple feet and crested on the 11th. The glacial dam traditionally breaks in late fall every other year.

Strong wind warnings were issued for the Interior areas for the 15th and 16th. Winds up to 51 mph were reported at Sheenjek River and Hodzana. Tanana reported gusts up to 48 mph, 47 mph at Kaltag, and 38 mph at McGrath and Fort Yukon. Numerous power outages were reported on the night of the 16th and into the 17th. Considerable amounts of airborne glacial dust was seen along the Tanana River and a number of trees were reported down.

The first significant snowfall impacted the Southcentral on the 17th with over 3" at Seward, 2" at Cordova and Girdwood. More snow fell in the Southcentral on the 21stwith more than 12" at Hatcher and Indian Passes. Eagle River reported more than 7", Palmer and Potter marsh received more than 4" and Kenai reported 1". The snow created poor driving conditions in the area and numerous auto accidents and stuck vehicles were reported in Anchorage. Blizzard warnings were issued for Thompson Pass due to snow and high winds. Fairbanks received its first measureable snowfall on the 21st, with up to 5" reported near town. The snowfall for the 21st totaled 5.1" at Harding Lake and 3.2" at Circle Hot Springs.

A freezing rain advisory was issued for Fairbanks and Nenana areas on the 29th. Driving conditions did deteriorate and a portion of the Chena Hot Springs Road was closed for a couple hours. High winds, up to Hurricane Force, high seas and coastal flooding warnings were issued for Western Alaska and Bering Sea on the 29th. The high winds at Nome damaged buildings with roofs blown off and some boats were lost. On the 30th Adak reported a wind gust over 90 mph, Nokolski and Akutan 76 mph and Unalaska reported 98 mph. More icy roads affected Anchorage drivers on the 31st.