Tag Archives: Fairbanks

Fair Time

The Tanana Valley State Fair started on Friday, which generally means the slippery slope towards winter is well underway. With Alaska’s size, each corner of the state has its own fair, as opposed to just one for the entire state.

The start of the Tanana Valley State Fair is known for the start of the rainy season. In fact, a booth at the fair gives away prizes for the guessing how much rain Fairbanks will get during Fair dates.

This year, that number is looking to be unusually low. No rain is in the forecast until the fair’s final days, which means attendance could be good after not having one last year. Although, I have heard from many people that they will sit this one out, due to the rise in Covid cases. Time will tell on both fronts.

We are looking at a very warm week here. Not Texas hot mind you, but mid to upper 80’s, which is definitely warm for Interior Alaska.


Fire Season

Alaska smokejumpers land among the muskox

Luckily, we have not had a bad wildfire season in Alaska for 2021. We did have a fire flare up close to Fairbanks late last week, when smokejumpers, seen above, landed at UAF’s LARS location, where the herd of muskox can be seen roaming the hills. From the muskox field, the smokejumpers hiked the half mile to the fire’s location. That fire was quickly under control, and the firefighters went back to the Munson Creek fire soon after they were dispatched.

With just under 180,000 acres burned within the state so far this season, it puts us roughly equal with 2020 and within the lowest range of burned area since 2008. The Interior remains in a burn ban, but historically, 2/3 of acreage within a season has burned by July 15.

Figures,facts, graphics and video all from the Alaska Division of Forestry


Hot? It’s all perception

For the past 4-5 days, I’ve been amused by the local weather forecast. Monday and Tuesday of this week have been drawing a lot of attention for a coming “heat wave”. The extended forecast even had a sizzling HOT! for the two days, complete with an image of a blazing Sun and bright red heat waves radiating up from it. Weather forecasters couldn’t contain their excitement.

The forecast calls for a high of 82F degrees on both days.

Quite the scorcher.

On Friday, Fairbanks saw a high of 80 degrees for the 11th time this season, which historically, is the average number for a summer. In 2020, Fairbanks had only three days where we hit 80F for the entire season.

It should be noted that Anchorage residents have also been complaining about the heat. They saw a high of 78F on Saturday, and people were scrambling up into the Chugach Mountains to find snow. Anchorage hit 80F on Sunday, which was the third day in a row for them having a record high temp. In the past 70 years, Anchorage has seen 80F degrees only 37 times.


Double Sunset

From the National Weather Service

As I wrote yesterday, Fairbanks just had its final post-midnight sunset. The sun went down at 12:01 am on July 15, but the sun also set at 11:57 pm on July 15th.

Double sunset, double the fun. Life in the north.


Not a bad corner…

“My wish is to stay always like this, living quietly in a corner of nature.”

— Claude Monet


The stream less traveled

Nuggets by Jamie Smith


Play ball!

Film Friday:

Winter Baseball League in Fairbanks; Photo credit: University of Alaska Archives

The Midnight Sun Game

Alaska Goldpanners at bat at Growden Memorial Park, 12:02am June 22, 2021

The 116th Midnight Sun Baseball Game took place on Monday night. The first pitch for the annual Solstice event was fired off at 10pm. The game is played in its entirety without the use of artificial lights.

The seventh inning stretch usually lands around midnight, with the playing of the Alaska Flag Song. It’s quite the event, and brings out the largest crowd of the season for the Panners.

Growden Park was looking pretty good after some off season renovations, and the Goldpanners are fielding a decent team this year.

The Alaska Goldpanners have hosted the game since 1960, and have a dominating record of 47-14. In 2020, with the Goldpanners in hiatus, the game took place with a men’s league team losing to a Legion All-Star team. The game has never seen artificial light, and it has never been rained out.

On Monday/Tuesday, the Panners defeated the Everett Merchants 3-0.


Fun Fact

Death Valley logbook on Thursday

Last Thursday, Death Valley had a high temp of 128F. That was still closer to freezing, than the record low for Fairbanks at -66F.

A chilly afternoon crossing the Goldstream Valley, from the magic of Leica.

Thanks to AlaskaWx for that little tidbit.


In the weeds

Film Friday:

Forgotten One Ton

Camera: Polaroid 600 Land Camera; Film: Polaroid B&W 600