Heavy rain and flooding possible for Southeast by week’s end

A flood watch is in effect for most of the panhandle beginning Thursday morning
Chief Meteorologist Melissa Frey breaks down the warnings in effect along with the state-wide and extended forecast for Alaska.
Published: Sep. 13, 2023 at 7:40 AM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Wet and seasonal weather has taken hold across much of Alaska, with the heaviest rain in the coming days taking aim on the Gulf Coast region. An area of low pressure building into the Gulf of Alaska is set to bring a surge of moisture into Prince William Sound and the Panhandle, where several inches of rain can be expected by the end of the week.

Rain showers are already evident this morning across Southcentral Alaska, with the activity expected to slowly let up for inland locations through the day. Much like yesterday, we’ll see some dry time and highs climbing into the mid-50s. Unfortunately for the sun lovers, limited sunshine can be expected through the rest of this week. Mostly cloudy to overcast skies look to maintain their hold across much of the southern coastline, as waves of rain continue to impact the region.

While inland locations will see some dry time, the approaching low will bring an increase in rain for Prince William Sound and east into the Panhandle into the evening hours. Through Friday, the sound can easily expect to see 1 to 3 inches of rain, with the heaviest occurring near Valdez and Cordova. Wrangell-St. Elias will also see the potential for several inches of rainfall, with higher elevations seeing snow if not a wintry mix.

Flood watches have been issued for Southeast Alaska in anticipation of several hours of rainfall and the potential for flooding. While the rain today will remain primarily light, the rainfall intensity begins to increase into the evening hours, as the low moves into the Gulf of Alaska. It’s looking very likely that over the next 48 hours, parts of Southeast could see 2 to 5 inches of rain with some localized heavier amounts. While this won’t amount to any significant flooding, rising waters could lead to some flooding on rivers and low-lying lands. You’ll want to take the necessary precautions if you live in flood-prone areas.

Speaking of flooding, the Kenai River continues to deal with flooding issues from a glacier-dammed lake outburst. The greatest threats will be below Skilak Lake, where flood waters will exceed 2 feet above flood stage. While the river is expected to crest Wednesday morning, the flood warning remains in place through Sunday.

Looking ahead, the active weather pattern will keep seasonal conditions and rain showers in the forecast well into next week.

Have a safe and wonderful Wednesday!