From abnormal to average: Winter conditions vary across Interior

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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) Many residents of Fairbanks may notice that there is no snow on the ground.

Snow conditions in Fairbanks are below average. The little snow we did have melted due to rain. However, at high elevations and East and North of town, there is plenty of snow. (John Dougherty/KTVF)

Snow conditions in Fairbanks are below average. The little snow we did have melted due to rain. However, at high elevations and East and North of town, there is plenty of snow.

"Normally we do have our snow pack established with an inch or more of snow around October 10th, so we are behind our normal snow pack for the winter on the ground," said Ed Plumb, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Fairbanks.



Snow in Salcha

Just because Fairbanks is behind on snow, doesn't mean there is no snow in the Interior. Salcha has plenty of snow. As Plumb explains, many areas around Fairbanks already have snow on the ground.

"If you just go just east of town or up in elevation there is a lot of snow. For instance, North Pole is reporting around an inch of snow, and as you continue to go east toward Salcha and Delta. Once you get out to Delta, there is about 10 to 14 inches of snow on the ground," Plumb said.



Ice Skater in Salcha

While no snow may be bad for locals wanting to ski, snowmachine or snowshoe, one benefit to the conditions around town, is that the lakes are frozen with no snow. This is giving residents the unique opportunity to ice skate on them. But, Plumb says people need to be careful.

"You do have to be very careful because the ice thickness can very, whether there is like spring water coming up and keeping the ice thin, or if the lake is deeper and it is not as cold as some of the shallower lakes. And then of course on the rivers, we have got ice forming but the rivers are always very dangerous. Especially this time of year due to variable ice conditions," Plumb said.

Plumb also said that south facing lakes will have less ice because of the amount of sun exposure.

The conditions around the interior may change soon, with the snow expected on Friday, Plumb says that we may see our first inch of snow pack that stays all winter.