Just before Independence Day holiday, Anchorage beats heat record

Just as many residents are preparing for the Independence Day holiday, Anchorage hit 80 degrees Tuesday evening, beating a heat record for July 3 set in 1979, according to the National Weather Service in Anchorage.

A strong ridge of high pressure over the southern mainland of Alaska is part of the reason for the hot weather, said NWS meteorologist Shaun Baines.

That ridge of high pressure combined with an offshore flow to work against the sea breeze that would usually cool things down in the evening.

"That's why it's almost 8 p.m. and we're sitting at the office at 79 degrees," Baines said.

The warm weather, with temperatures in the upper 70s to lower 80s, stretched from Bristol Bay to Anchorage and Mat-Su to the Copper River Basin on Tuesday, said Baines. The temperature at the Cordova airport hit 79 degrees by 7 p.m.

But will it stay hot through the Fourth of July holiday?

Not exactly.


"Pretty much everywhere will be cooler tomorrow, with some clouds moving through along with some sea breeze," Baines said.

Baines said his office expects temperatures in a lot of places to be 5 degrees cooler on average Wednesday, and cooler still on Thursday, then warm up a bit into the weekend on Friday and Saturday.

"All in all, it's going to remain a pretty warm week," Baines said.

You can see the current forecast for the Anchorage area here.