158  
FGAK78 PACR 232259  
ESFAK  
 
HYDROLOGIC OUTLOOK  
NWS ALASKA PACIFIC RIVER FORECAST CENTER ANCHORAGE AK  
3 PM AKDT THU MAR 23 2017  
   
.SPRING BREAKUP OUTLOOK FOR ALASKA
 
 
THE FLOOD POTENTIAL FROM SNOWMELT AND ICE JAMS THROUGHOUT ALASKA THIS  
SPRING IS CURRENTLY RATED AS NORMAL. THIS WOULD INDICATE THAT  
LOCATIONS THAT OFTEN EXPERIENCE FLOODING DURING BREAKUP ARE LIKELY TO  
SEE MINOR FLOODING IF AN ICE JAM FORMS DOWNSTREAM. THIS FORECAST IS  
BASED ON CURRENT ICE THICKNESS, OBSERVED SNOWPACK, RIVER FREEZE-UP  
STAGE, AND LONG RANGE WEATHER FORECASTS.  
 
ICE CONDITIONS  
 
MARCH ICE THICKNESS DATA ARE AVAILABLE FOR A LIMITED NUMBER OF  
OBSERVING SITES IN ALASKA. MARCH 1ST MEASUREMENTS INDICATE THAT ICE  
THICKNESS IS GENERALLY NORMAL TO SLIGHTLY ABOVE NORMAL ACROSS MOST OF  
THE STATE WITH TWO EXCEPTIONS. THE ICE ON THE YUKON RIVER AT GALENA  
WAS SIGNIFICANTLY THICKER THAN NORMAL AND THE ICE THICKNESS MEASURED  
ON THE COLVILLE RIVER AT COLVILLE VILLAGE WAS BELOW NORMAL.  
ACCUMULATED FREEZING DEGREE DAYS TREND FROM BELOW NORMAL ALONG THE  
NORTH SLOPE OF ALASKA TO NEAR NORMAL IN THE INTERIOR OF ALASKA TO  
ABOVE NORMAL IN SOUTHCENTRAL AND SOUTHEAST ALASKA.  
 
SNOWPACK  
 
AN ANALYSIS OF THE MARCH 1ST SNOWPACK BY THE NATURAL RESOURCES  
CONSERVATION SERVICE (NRCS) INDICATES A GENERALLY BELOW NORMAL  
SNOWPACK SOUTH OF THE ALASKA RANGE, INCLUDING SOUTHEAST ALASKA. AREAS  
ALONG THE SOUTHERN SLOPES OF THE WESTERN ALASKA RANGE ARE WELL BELOW  
AVERAGE. NORTH OF THE ALASKA RANGE, THERE IS AN AREA OF WELL ABOVE  
NORMAL SNOWPACK EAST OF FAIRBANKS, BUT OVERALL AVERAGES WITHIN THE  
MIDDLE AND UPPER YUKON BASINS ARE CLOSE TO NORMAL. SNOWPACK  
CONDITIONS ALONG THE DALTON HIGHWAY ON THE NORTH SLOPE OF ALASKA ARE  
NEAR NORMAL. THE MONTH OF MARCH CONTINUES TO BE UNUSUALLY DRY FOR  
AREAS SOUTH OF THE ALASKA RANGE AND ALONG THE WEST COAST OF ALASKA.  
FOR MORE DETAILS, PLEASE REFER TO THE VARIOUS SNOW GRAPHICS FROM THE  
ALASKA-PACIFIC RIVER FORECAST CENTER (APRFC) OR FROM THE NATURAL  
RESOURCES CONSERVATION SERVICE (NRCS).  
 
CLIMATE OUTLOOK  
 
THE MOST IMPORTANT FACTOR DETERMINING THE SEVERITY OF ICE BREAKUP  
REMAINS THE WEATHER DURING APRIL AND MAY. THE TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK  
THROUGH MARCH INDICATES AN INCREASED CHANCE FOR ABOVE NORMAL  
TEMPERATURES IN SOUTHERN AND EASTERN AREAS OF ALASKA. THE TEMPERATURE  
OUTLOOK THROUGH APRIL SUGGESTS AN INCREASED CHANCE OF ABOVE NORMAL  
TEMPERATURES FOR SOUTHERN AND WESTERN PORTIONS OF THE STATE WITH  
EQUAL CHANCES OF ABOVE OR BELOW NORMAL TEMPERATURES FOR NORTHEAST  
AREAS OF THE STATE. IT SHOULD BE NOTED THAT FORECAST CONFIDENCE  
THROUGH THIS PERIOD IS LOW AS MODEL RESULTS HAVE BEEN QUITE VARIABLE  
LATELY.  
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THE CLIMATE FORECASTS PLEASE REFER TO THE  
CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER. THE NEXT SPRING OUTLOOK IS SCHEDULED FOR  
THURSDAY APRIL 6TH.  
 

 
BCJ  
 
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