Bare Ground Stark Contrast to Last Year's Snowfall
Lack of snow bad news for plow businesses, ice sculptors
ANCHORAGE - Around the same time last year Anchorage was buried under almost 90 inches of snow, which kept plow drivers busy.
“I don't even look forward to it anymore. I want this stuff to stop. I know that's our business but we're at the point we need a little bit of a break to catch up,” said Jared Palenske from Kelly Lawn & Landscaping on January 12, 2012.
This year, that’s not the case. City workers keep busy by spreading ice melter instead of plowing sidewalks.
Residents said they’re fed up with the wild weather and want to rewind to a year ago.
“This is ridiculous. Last year was awesome because you got to go sledding and skiing and all the outdoor activities that come with it. The only good thing about it is I've only had to shovel my driveway three times. So that's a plus,” said Edward Boudreau of Eagle River.
The sloppy weekend weather took its toll on the town square ice sculptures. Sculptor Speareo Stephens prevented Mother Nature from ruining his work of art by putting a tarp over it.
“That used to be a bear,” he said, gesturing to a melted, misshapen figure riding a car. “That's what happens in the elements. Nothing anyone can really do about it. Plan ahead a little bit. I made my sculpture extra thick to begin with because I know this can happen.”
So far Anchorage has gotten 25.6 inches of snow. That’s about 17 below an average year, and almost 64 inches less from last year.
Dave Snider, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said if Anchorage doesn’t get more snow it could have an impact this summer.
“The moisture around Alaska is important for fire danger. Without significant snowfall and soil moisture that can add to the fire danger we see in the summer, so that will be a concern,” said Snider.
While 2012-2013 doesn’t look like it will be the lowest year on record, right now it looks like it won’t even come close to stacking up to last year’s snowfall.