One thing Palin can't see from her house? Snow

If this keeps up, will Alaskans forget how to use their snowblowers?

Look outside on a sunny day. Except for the lack of leaves on trees and our eroding daylight, it could be early September. Mountaintops above 3,000 feet in the Chugach Range have a dusting of snow, but that's about it. Most years, September looks similar.

Six times this October, the daytime high temperature has breached 50 degrees. Only three times have the nighttime lows dipped under 25 degrees?

And the National Weather Service forecast mentions only a chance of snow showers through the end of next week. Once again, winter is late arriving in Southcentral.

Last year, the first measurable snowfall didn't float to the ground until Nov. 8, when one to six inches fell in various parts of town. That was less than a week short of the record for the latest first snow in Anchorage — Nov. 13, 2002. The average over the last 20 years is Oct. 16. (The average for the last five years has been later: Oct. 24.)

Why such tardiness?

The National Weather Service website reports a steady flow of warm air from the Gulf of Alaska has pushed onshore and flowed across Southcentral this month, a pattern expected to remain in place through much of next week.

"A moderate La Nina pattern is setting up for this winter season," the Weather Service website predicts.

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