So much for fall

Chugiak-Eagle River sees first snowfall of season


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Snow falls in downtown Eagle River on Monday, Sept. 23. The Weather Service received reports of 2 1/2 inches in the Eagle River Valley.

MIKE NESPER

So much for fall.

Just a day after the first day of autumn, a light snow fell on Chugiak-Eagle River on Monday, Sept. 23.

The National Weather Service in Anchorage received reports that Eagle River Valley had 2 ½ inches, meteorologist Andy Dixon said.

Snow clung to trees and grass, but roadways were clear Monday. The white stuff didn’t stick around too long and melted by Tuesday, Sept. 24.

“The sun is still fairly strong this time of year,” Dixon said.

No snow is expected this week, Dixon said, and temperatures should reach low 50s.

While the first snowfall of the season came six days earlier than 2012, it’s nowhere close to a record.

The earliest measurable snowfall — one-tenth of an inch or more — came on Sept. 20, 1947, Dixon said. The earliest trace amount fell on Sept. 1, 1944, he said.

The Anchorage area has seen consecutive record-setting years of snow. Last year, the city set the record of 232 days between the first and last snowfall, and in 2011, more than 11 feet dumped in town.

The first sign of winter did come earlier than expected.

The average date for the first trace amount of snow is Oct. 6, Dixon said, and the average date for the first measurable snowfall is Oct. 16.

Monday’s snowfall is considered a trace amount, Dixon said, because only trace amounts fell in Anchorage — where snowfall is officially measured.

But it’s definitely a sign of things to come.

“It was just an early shot across the bow,” Dixon said. “We all know it’s coming.”

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