Here we go again: Spring snowstorm blankets Southcentral

Marc Lester

Update, 9:30 p.m. Saturday: Roads are extremely slick throughout the area, with numerous accidents reported.

Earlier this evening, Anchorage police reported that, since midnight, officers had responded to 164 accidents (14 with injuries) and 41 vehicles in distress.

The Glenn Highway was reported to be especially bad, and traffic was rerouted for a time onto the Old Glenn Highway near Eagle River while crews sanded the road.


Update, 7:15 p.m. Saturday: The National Weather Service has extended winter weather advisories for Anchorage and the Matanuska Valley to 4 p.m. Sunday.


Update, 5 p.m. Saturday: The National Weather Service has lifted a winter weather advisory for the Kenai Peninsula.


Original story:

Some spring.

A late-season storm rolled across Southcentral Alaska on Saturday, dropping about a half-foot of snow in the hardest-hit areas by mid-afternoon, National Weather Service forecasters said.

The weather service is expecting another 3 to 6 inches Saturday night in Anchorage. The storm, which started early Saturday, could bring a total of between 8 inches and 14 inches by Sunday morning, the weather service said.

From 12 a.m. to about 3 p.m., Anchorage police received 107 reports of collisions between vehicles, seven reports of collisions with injuries and 30 reports of vehicles in distress, commonly known as "ditch-divers," a police dispatcher said.

Heavy snow, with varying accumulation, was forecast across Southcentral, from the Kenai Peninsula to the Matanuska Valley. Between 7 inches and 12 inches of snow accumulation is in the forecast for the Matanuska Valley.

On the Kenai, a winter weather advisory has been posted for areas around Kachemak Bay and east of Soldotna, the weather service said. Up to 12 inches of snow is forecast, the highest along the Homer Bluff, the weather service said.

Still, some communities not far from others hit with snow or rain had not seen any precipitation because of the thinness of the storm, forecaster Jim Nelson said.

"It's a narrow band, and it's been sitting in basically the same area since 3 this morning," Nelson said.

Nelson said another storm is likely bringing more snow to Southcentral until the middle of next week.

"As we get closer in time, we’ll be able to nail down exact timing and amounts, but we're just dealing with this one right now," he said.

All current weather service advisories and warnings for Alaska can be found here.


National Weather Service current advisories and warnings in Alaska