The National Weather Service Forecast Office says Anchorage has had twenty inches of snow this winter. That’s about a third of what we normally have at this point. And we've so often had temps above freezing that pretty much all we've seen for months now is a crusty layer of ice (it can hardly be called snow). I pity the teenagers having to take to the roads in driver's education this winter.
I did some research on snowfall records in past years, and I found some interesting data HERE and HERE. I'm holding out hope that we'll have a redo of the following: in corner number one, winter of 2002-2003! In corner number two, winter of 2003-2004. Weighing in at a measly 36.8 inches, winter number one clearly stood no chance against its neighbor, winter number two, who weighed in at a whopping 113.9 inches and won a place in the top-five record winters for snowfall! Granted, we still have a few winter months left and could potentially get a good dump of snow, but I foresee another bottom-five record with all the warm fronts that seem to be moving in.
Since our snowshoes are languishing in storage, and our most useful item has become ice cleats, my husband and I went exploring on the trails by our house. Besides sliding around on our bums and nearly falling down a few cliff edges, we had a pleasant walk. I savored the air that once again smelled of thawing life. Winter has its own smell, but every year I forget the sweet, earthy flavor of the air when things start warming up again.