The weather, the light and of course, the Northern Lights are always sources of questions that our guests and clients have for us, here in Chisana. We call that “asking which way the wind blows.” Here is a brief overview of what the weather might have in store for you during your visit to Alaska in the coming months.
Although Winters can be extremely harsh, with temperatures around -60 degrees Fahrenheit for days at a time, Interior summers can also have high temperatures over 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
“Weather is a great metaphor for life — sometimes it’s good, sometimes it’s bad, and there’s nothing much you can do about it but carry an umbrella.” ~Terri Guillemets
Of course, since you are wondering and probably guessed, the Northern Lights are at their finest during the dark and cold Winter nights.
which way the wind blows, and when
(April – May) Here in the mountains, this is our normal windy time, as the air is so much warmer than the ice and snow still melting. Snow is possible, especially at higher elevations.
In the Spring, clear skies, increasingly longer days, and warming temperatures break winter’s hold on the land with dramatic quickness.
Average highs are 40-50. Lows may still dip into the teens and single digits. Temperatures range from below freezing at night to highs in the 60’s during the best days. The skies are typically clear with limited precipitation.
The Northern Lights are still visible and always such a wonder to behold.
The forest cover is extensive in the river valleys but gives way with increasing altitude to sub-alpine and alpine vegetation. With the exception of the large river flats with many small lakes, most of the area is dominated by hills, which grow to the high peaks of the Wrangell and Nutzotin Mountain Ranges that surround us.
(June – July) Our Summer months are short, granted, but they are wonderful. Everything is so lush and green finally and the air stays so warm through the dim nights. We do not have 24 hour daylight, but we do have enough light all night long during the Summer, to read by outside.
Wildflowers and mosquitoes peak in June and July. You may consider bringing lots of insect repellant or a head-net. June and July are also the warmest months, with highs reaching into the 80’s on some days, but it can snow any month of the year in the high-country.
“The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain.” ~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Drizzling rains are not uncommon throughout the summer and July is typically the month that our rains start. It can be anything from daily sprinkles to three week long downpours to no rain at all. So, just remember to pack your rain gear and you will be fine!
They say, that the Northern Lights are still there, dancing their magical dance, but unseen during these two very light months.
Autumn arrives early; willows and aspens begin to change color by mid-August. This season can be delightfully clear, spectacular, and mosquito-free, but it often too short. First snows often fall in September.
The average highs in August and September are from 77 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit and the lows are from 45 to 30 degrees Fahrenheit.
The most amazing part of Alaska’s Fall months are that the Northern Lights can and are seen during August and September with the return of the dark nights. We are loosing light fast during these two months and it isn’t uncommon at all to see the Aurora as we take the horses out to graze at night.
The result of living deep inside the mountains and interior continental climate (long, extremely cold winters, and short, warm, relatively dry summers). Remember that in any Alaska season, the weather can change quickly, so it is wise to pack with clothing that can be layered, ready to peel off or add as you need.
“There’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing.” ~Alfred Wainwright
Speaking of weather, packing, clothing and temperatures… I gathered up some of the posts I thought best complimented this one about the weather. You may very well enjoy them in addition to learning more about our weather and what you can expect (that would be…the unexpected!) during your visit.
A real heads-up for which way the wind blows, and when!
- Alaska Winter Weather, Explained
- Summer Forecast: Weather Permitting
- Weather Permitting
- Summertime Gear for your Alaska Horseback Adventure
- Hunt Alaska Naked
- Guide Trainees, Pack for Camp!
Another post you may be looking for, wishing for is 15 Steps From Your Door To Your Alaska Horseback Adventure. A wonderful post (if I do say so myself!) that helps you choose,schedule and plan your Alaska Adventure from today right up till you step off the plane on our airstrip!
I couldn’t leave out Winter! And as I had this post proof-read for me, the only comment I received in return was that “it was lacking my unique sarcastic wit.” GASP! Well, alrighty then.
“On cable TV they have a weather channel – 24 hours of weather. We had something like that where I grew up. We called it a window.” ~Dan Spencer
Ok! There ya go and remember, you are always welcome to leave a comment, ask a question or just click the “Book-It” button below and drop us a note!