Anchorage snow leaves a layer of dust

Still not the first official snow
Published: Oct. 2, 2021 at 5:56 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Many Anchorage residents woke up to light snow on Saturday morning. Storm reports show one to two inches of snow in some areas across Anchorage and Eagle River. After the snow melted by early afternoon, many saw a fine layer of dust on their cars. Because we live in Alaska, the first thought for many was volcanic ash, but no, it’s just normal dust.

The days leading up to Saturday’s snowfall were quite dry. It’s likely riverbeds and areas with glacial silt dried up. Winds on Friday night picked up that dried dust and carried it into the air. The snow on Saturday brought the dust back to earth, depositing it on cars and surfaces.

There is some volcanic ash being re-suspended/blown around near Kodiak. Ash from the 1912 eruption of the Katmai-Novarupta volcano is being re-suspended due to strong winds out of the northwest. These winds, up to 60 mph, will continue through Sunday evening. The National Weather Service says the villages of Larsen Bay, Karluk and Akhiok are the most likely to be impacted.

And while much of Anchorage saw another round of snow, it has still not “officially” snowed in Anchorage this winter. To be an official snowfall, the recording station in west Anchorage must measure one-tenth of an inch of snow. The NWS is reporting a trace of snow for Saturday.

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