It was a record-warm May for much of Alaska, but Interior gets chilly again

Many Alaskans suffered  'weather whiplash' in the month of May. (iStock)
Many Alaskans suffered ‘weather whiplash’ in the month of May. (iStock)
Some Alaskans may have been experiencing “weather whiplash” as June arrived Monday.

Despite record-breaking high temperatures across much of the state in May, parts of Interior Alaska received warning of below-freezing temperatures Monday morning, which even included an inch of snow falling in the communities of Salcha and Delta Junction.

But many parts of the state — including Delta Junction — just recorded their warmest May on record. That also included the Interior community of Eagle, which saw a high of 91 degrees on May 23, marking the earliest point on record a temperature of 90 degrees or warmer was recorded anywhere in the state.

Interior Alaska wasn’t the only region to see record-breaking temperatures. The Southeast Alaska communities of Juneau and Haines also recorded record temps.

Even the northern communities of Kotzebue and Bettles had their warmest May. The nation’s northernmost community, Barrow, tied its record with the help of a 47-degree high May 21. The weather service noted that Barrow normally expects highs around 28 degrees in the middle of May.

Fairbanks recorded its second-warmest May, while Anchorage had its fifth-warmest.

Rebecca Duell, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Anchorage, said a persistent high-pressure system “parked” itself over much of Alaska last month, causing the warmer weather to linger. High-pressure systems are common in spring, she said, but the above-average temperatures fit the overall trend of warmer weather in Alaska this year.

She said over the next few days a weather system will be moving out of the Gulf of Alaska and over the mainland, bringing cool, wet conditions to portions of the state, including Southcentral.

Scattered showers and cooler temperatures, in the 50s and 60s, are expected to move into the Anchorage area Monday night and persist off and on through the week.

Related stories from around the North:

Finland:  Storm in West Finland felled trees, cut power, shut down ferry service, Yle News

Greenland:  Changing Sea Ice: The Ripple Effect (VIDEO), Eye on the Arctic

Norway: 2014 warmest year in history for Norway, Barents Observer

Sweden: Climate change may scupper flood insurance for many in Sweden, Radio Sweden

United States: Unusual weather pattern brings record highs to Arctic Alaska, Alaska Public Radio Network

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