The largest city in Alaska broke its daily snowfall record on Wednesday when 9 inches of snow fell in 24 hours. For context, the previous record for Nov. 8 was 7.3 inches set in 1982. Another 8.2 inches piled up Thursday, which also broke the daily record of 7.1 inches set on Nov. 9, 1956. That brought Anchorage's two-day total to 17.2 inches of snow.
By late Thursday, Anchorage had a 21-inch snow depth, or the total amount of snow on the ground. This was Anchorage's greatest snow depth for so early in the season, according to Alaska-based climatologist Brian Brettschneider. Already, 29.2 inches of snow has fallen in Anchorage this season through Sunday, which is more than 20 inches above the average snowfall to date for Nov. 12.
The image below shows the amount of snowfall to the east of Anchorage along Richardson Highway over Thompson Pass on Wednesday. FOX Weather Winter Weather Expert Tom Niziol said 65 inches of snow fell in less than 24 hours at Thompson Pass during this winter storm. This 65-inch report was less than 10 miles from where Alaska's 24-hour snowfall record of 78 inches was set on Feb. 9, 1963, according to NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information.
Snow totals from Matanuska-Susitna Valley, which lies northwest of Anchorage proper, ranged from 9.5 inches near Wasilla to 15.5 inches near Butte, the National Weather Service in Anchorage said on X, formerly Twitter. The community of Eagle River saw more than 18 inches of snow, while more than 25 inches of snow was measured just south of the Anchorage suburb.
Anchorage resident Stephen Richardson recorded video of the snowfall between 4 a.m. and 5 a.m. local time Thursday. He said he received about 18 inches of snow, which is being plowed by a tractor in Richardson’s footage.
On Thursday, Anchorage Mayor Dave Bronson declared a snow emergency.
"Snow accumulation was greater than what was forecasted, and due to the heavy snow, several fallen trees have been reported," said the mayor's office. "Street maintenance operations has responded to 40 downed trees in the last 15 hours."
Such heavy snowfall across Anchorage led to power outages, along with school and road closures, according to the Anchorage Daily News. The heavy snowfall forced some pedestrians to walk on the road, as the sidewalks were buried in snow.
The NWS weather forecast for Anchorage calls for partly to mostly sunny skies during the Veterans Day weekend, with more snow expected Sunday night after midnight.