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Old 06-21-2013, 03:47 PM
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Default Now I know why we're not hearing much (at the moment) from our Alaska Contingent.

They're all sitting in a swimming pool!

"Sun bathers, reptiles emerge in Alaska heat as wildfires spread

By Yereth Rosen

ANCHORAGE, Alaska | Thu Jun 20, 2013 4:59pm BST

(Reuters) - With a heat wave gripping Alaska, strange things have been happening under the midnight sun.

Anchorage residents, who a month ago shivered through an unseasonably cold spring and a surprise May snowstorm, have donned swimsuits and depleted stores of fans to ward off record heat in the state's largest city.

Temperatures have run as much as 20 degrees Fahrenheit above normal, with daytime highs in Anchorage climbing into the 80s in recent days, and the sudden onset of atypical warmth has been blamed for unleashing wildfires and flooding alike.

Moose have been spotted near lawn sprinklers around Anchorage and at least one invaded someone's kiddie pool. Pet reptiles, normally confined to heated indoor spaces because of Alaska's cold outdoors, are making rare public appearances.

Park managers at Goose Lake, one of Anchorage's few outdoor swimming spots, had to eject a pet iguana named "Godzilla," along with some pet snakes and a turtle that patrons brought to the crowded sandy shoreline, said Doreen Hernandez, the city aquatic superintendent who has been working at the site.

Pets are not allowed at Goose Lake for health reasons, although she conceded that the rule is usually applied to dogs.

"We don't have a sign that says `No Snakes,'" she said.

Heat records have been broken around the state, with an all-time record high of 96 degrees reached on Tuesday in Talkeetna, the tiny town famous as the jumping-off site for Mount McKinley expeditions. The previous record high there was 91 degrees.

SIZZLING SOLSTICE

The heat spell has come at the peak of Alaska's summer, just before the solstice, a time of nearly round-the-clock daylight as the sun barely grazes the horizon overnight.

In Valdez, operators of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline marine terminal halted oil-tanker loading for 4 1/2 hours late Monday night and early Tuesday morning as a precaution after temperatures at the terminal hit 92 degrees.

"Our systems aren't used to operating in that heat," said Katie Pesznecker, a spokeswoman for operator Alyeska Pipeline Service Co.

Meteorologists blame the anomaly on rapid shift in atmospheric wind patterns. The system that brought cold air from the north during the spring changed suddenly, sending in hot air from the south and southeast.

The rapid heat-up caused considerable flooding of mountain streams, said Tom Pepe, an Anchorage-based meteorologist for the National Weather Service.

"You get big pieces of ice that jam up small parts of rivers,"

Flooding along the Yukon River late last month caused severe damage in several Native Alaskan villages, most notably the Athabascan community of Galena, where nearly all residents were evacuated by aircraft.

Property damage along the river was estimated at $10 million (6.4 million pounds), said Tony Luiken, a state emergency management spokesman. The governor has declared a disaster.

The heat wave also has stoked numerous wildfires, many ignited by dry-lightning strikes fuelled by ample dry brush.

A lightning-sparked wildfire straddling the Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge and Wrangell-St. Elias National Park tripled in size in one day, and was last measured at more than 25,000 acres, the National Park Service said on Wednesday.

(Editing by Steve Gorman and Maureen Bavdek)"
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Old 06-21-2013, 04:40 PM
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Default Re: Now I know why we're not hearing much (at the moment) from our Alaska Contingent.

Fred: I talked with Ard yesterday, he was telling me it was 92 degrees out at the cabin during the day, during the evening it wasn't getting below 80 degrees inside the cabin, pretty darn warm for anywhere, outright hot for Alaska.
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Old 06-22-2013, 01:24 PM
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Default Re: Now I know why we're not hearing much (at the moment) from our Alaska Contingent.

I would be soaking it up!!!! I am sure that it will not be long until.......it's snowing again........
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Old 06-22-2013, 01:28 PM
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Default Re: Now I know why we're not hearing much (at the moment) from our Alaska Contingent.

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Fred: I talked with Ard yesterday, he was telling me it was 92 degrees out at the cabin during the day, during the evening it wasn't getting below 80 degrees inside the cabin, pretty darn warm for anywhere, outright hot for Alaska.
Dear God! Centeral Southern Oregon is HOT during the 'Summer,' which we're not having save for the 'odd off.' At the moment he's 21 degrees warmer than me (71).
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Old 06-22-2013, 02:18 PM
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Default Re: Now I know why we're not hearing much (at the moment) from our Alaska Contingent.

40's at night to low 70's during the day here.

Poor ard must be sweltering and just think of the skeeter bloom from the heat.. must be the size of crows...
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Old 06-22-2013, 02:38 PM
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Default Re: Now I know why we're not hearing much (at the moment) from our Alaska Contingent.

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40's at night to low 70's during the day here.

Poor ard must be sweltering and just think of the skeeter bloom from the heat.. must be the size of crows...
Bob: After all the cold and snow during the wet spring they just went through, I think Ard is more than happy to finally see Blue Skies. He was pretty frustrated earlier with all the bad wx they were getting. I'm not sure if they are having a bad skeeter season or not, as he didn't really say. The worst skeeter summer I experienced in Fairbanks was the summer it rained almost everyday and if it didn't rain we had overcast skies, hardly saw the sun that summer and boy were the skeeters thick. Unfortunately, that was the summer my folks decided to visit........you can guess how that turned out. The issue with the area that Ard is in is all the moisture they had all spring and now the heat, so they might just be having a bumper crop of skeeters. Ard did mention that all the work he put into the front of the cabin clearing out the trees and brush seemed to be helping keep the skeeters at bay. They don't seem to like clearings or wind. It will be interesting to hear what is happening when he returns Tuesday.
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Old 06-22-2013, 09:03 PM
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Default Re: Now I know why we're not hearing much (at the moment) from our Alaska Contingent.

I consider Ard to be a lucky guy.......regardless of the skeeters........and I am sure that he knows it as well........
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