Particular weather patterns and daylight hours of each of the four divisions of the year (spring, summer, autumn, and winter) in Alaska, has some people questioning the phenomena of what is observed to exist during Alaska’s seasons. Interior Alaska by local standards has proved to be more powerful in weather conditions then I have ever experienced in another surrounding environment.
The meltdown begins in March. A thick subsurface layer of frozen soil exist directly below the hard, wet, compacted snow in the spring. . The sun rises at 6:00am without producing much heat and the daylight does not end till about 11:00pm. The snow is still thick below the woody perennial trees keeping the sun beams from striking the frozen ice crystals that lay beneath the trees, creating a white layer that covers the ground below. The beauty of ice crystals falling in light white flakes is sporadic in Alaska’s spring time. What appears to be a soft white fluffy snow; layers over the snow that was being diminished by the sunlight during the day. At night where it is the coldest part of the day, re-freezes what snow has already been melted. This process occurs over the next couple of months. There are some days where the temperature reads 40 degrees and other days where the temperature reads negative 20 degrees. The unpredictable spring in Alaska has individual faces that read “questioning” in an up most unpredictable manner.
Alaska’s warmest season of the year begins in June and last through August. Summer has begun with temperatures that read 40 degrees and as high as 100 degrees. The median temperature in the summer stays around 80 degrees. No humidity and seems to be very dry. When it rains in Alaska, it rains in Alaska. The rain will flood the streets and within a few hours the rain would have evaporated to its dry state. Coming from a humid environment on a rainy day in Nebraska, it would take a couple of days for the rain to evaporate in the streets. Not in Alaska; the kids could go out and play in dry streets that same very day that it rained. It is important to stay well hydrated in Alaska’s summers because it can mess with your voice box in this dry atmosphere. It almost feels like your vocal cords just shriveled up and died. In the summer, Alaska is beautiful in color. The radiant iridescent sunlight touches the leaves of the white spruce and it glistens like if it was holding light green diamonds for its leafs. The elongated pine trees hold a contrast in its dark green state and the native wildflowers give Alaska’s nature just the right touch. The sun beams down across the stretch of land for most of the day and night. I think if I remember correctly the sun does not totally set and it is somewhat dark for about two to three hours (3am-5am).
Alaska’s autumn marks the transition from summer into winter. Autumn begins in August and Alaskan’s don’t get to experience much of the transition. One minute there are leaves on the tree and the next day they are naked. The leaves on the tree just drop. The beautiful Alaska’s sky is showing pinks, purples, yellows, and blues. It almost feels like you are in heaven for a bit when you are lost in the beauty of the sky. Then in an instant of time, the sky becomes gray in spender, and in its gray-like fecal matter that covers the sky in a smog (when you name it a crappy day), as if you never experienced a beautiful moment in Alaska. “What a bummer,” is my thought. The dropping of temperature begins in the autumn months and it is quick to lay down a blanket of snow in October. Alaska starts losing daylight and some days the smog makes it feel like we have already lost more daylight then what we actually do have. The temperature is much like spring Alaska; it can be negative 20 or in the upper 40’s.
The coldest season of the year in Alaska is between the months of January through February, sometimes March. The earth has tilted and Alaska does not see much sunlight. The temperatures can read below negative 60 degrees. Snow falls when it is above negative 20. Darkness consists most of the day time hours and into the night. Vague sunlight in interior Alaska is around the time 12am-3am, then disappears from the horizon. I am pretty sure that the sun stays in the horizon at all times, until we start gaining sunlight in January. Alaska’s winter is cold, snowy, and dark. The snow can accumulate and compact your driveway, to where it can be a major task of shoveling the snow into one huge pile in front of your house (I live on Eielson Air Force Base and it is required we shovel after each snow fall). The snow in the winter is so light, that you swipe your driveway off with a broom, instead of using a shovel. Frost creeps inside the doors to your place and outline the windows in your house. Alaska’s winter is just a cold, dark, dry winter.
Alaska’s four seasons are diffidently different from most. The snow and the cold weather seems to continue through most of the seasons; autumn, winter, and spring. The wildlife that thrives in this type of environment due to the vast seasons that Alaska displays, it makes you recognize the beauty in everyday life, when you go through the rough changes Alaska’s seasons brings and you come out alive.