Drought, causing low waters in Goodnews River, no blackberries, and early cool weather.
Alice Julius writes,
We had a drought, dehydrated summer, causing low water in our river, no blackberries, early cool weather, high winds as usual. Weather fogged up, with hardly any planes coming in due to the weather and planes that are very cautious due to past plane crashes they kept having lately. Otherwise, subsistence fishing was very good due to no commercial fishing which is not so good for people that primarily depend on commercial fishing.
National Weather Service Consult from Rick Thoman:
As often the case in the summer, there was considerable variation in precipitation. The long-term climate stations at both Bethel and King Salmon had periods of drier than normal weather early in the summer but in different months, while most of Southwest Alaska saw a recovery in August. August and September brought cooler temperatures compared to 2016. Ocean surface temperatures in the Southeast Bering Sea, while above normal, were not as far above normal as the previous summers. Thoman, R., Climate Science and Services Manager, NWS Alaska Region, NOAA
Pictured below are two weather history tables for Platinum (the closest community with historical weather information available). Daily weather data was collected from May 1, 2016, through August 31, 2016. The average temperature during this period was 52 degrees Fahrenheit, the average maximum temperature was 57 degrees, and the average minimum temperature was 48 degrees. Between the same dates in 2017, the average temperature was 49 degrees Fahrenheit, with the average maximum temperature at 53 degrees, and the average minimum temperature of 45 degrees. Overall, it appears that this area experienced a slightly cooler summer in 2017.
Also in the historical weather charts is information on annual precipitation. In 2016, this area received a total of 9.8 inches of precipitation, while in 2017, it received only 7.11 inches (a difference of 2.69 inches). This post has been forwarded to USGS for more information on berry abundance in this region.
See the published report, How are your berries? Perspectives of Alaska’s environmental managers on trends in wild berry abundance. Hupp, J. et al. Published online 2015 Sep 15. doi: 10.3402/ijch.v74.28704
Hardly any flights due to weather conditions (Photo by Alice Julius)
High winds pushing water ashore. (Photo by Alice Julius)
Low water (Photo by Alice Julius)
Low water on the river. (Photo by Alice Julius)
No berries (Photo by Alice Julius)
No black berries (Photo by Alice Julius)
Weather Underground Historical Weather Information, Platinum 2016
Weather Underground Historical Weather Information, Platinum 2017