Average Weather in December in Barrow Alaska, United States
In Barrow, the month of December is characterized by gradually falling daily high temperatures, with daily highs decreasing by 4°F, from 0°F to -4°F over the course of the month, and rarely exceeding 16°F or dropping below -18°F.
Daily low temperatures decrease by 5°F, from -10°F to -15°F, rarely falling below -29°F or exceeding 6°F.
For reference, on July 27, the hottest day of the year, temperatures in Barrow typically range from 36°F to 47°F, while on January 25, the coldest day of the year, they range from -19°F to -8°F.
Average High and Low Temperature in December
The figure below shows you a compact characterization of the hourly average temperatures for the quarter of the year centered on December. The horizontal axis is the day, the vertical axis is the hour of the day, and the color is the average temperature for that hour and day.
Average Hourly Temperature in December
The month of December in Barrow experiences essentially constant cloud cover, with the percentage of time that the sky is overcast or mostly cloudy remaining about 94% throughout the month.
The clearest day of the month is December 2, with clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy conditions 7% of the time.
For reference, on January 22, the cloudiest day of the year, the chance of overcast or mostly cloudy conditions is 96%, while on June 11, the clearest day of the year, the chance of clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy skies is 30%.
Cloud Cover Categories in December
A wet day is one with at least 0.04 inches of liquid or liquid-equivalent precipitation. In Barrow, the chance of a wet day over the course of December is essentially constant, remaining around 3% throughout.
For reference, the year's highest daily chance of a wet day is 21% on August 4, and its lowest chance is 1% on March 21.
Probability of Precipitation in December
We report snowfall in liquid-equivalent terms. The actual depth of new snowfall is typically between 5 and 10 times the liquid-equivalent amount, assuming the ground is frozen. As with rainfall, we consider the liquid-equivalent snowfall accumulated over a sliding 31-day period centered around each day.
The average sliding 31-day liquid-equivalent snowfall during December in Barrow is essentially constant, remaining about 0.1 inches throughout, and rarely exceeding 0.5 inches or falling below -0.0 inches.
Average Monthly Liquid-Equivalent Snowfall in December
Due to its extreme latitude, Barrow experiences polar day (also known as the midnight Sun) during the summer and polar night during the winter. These are periods of time in which the sun is continuously above or below the horizon for more than one day. The precise start and end dates of polar day and night vary from year to year and depend on the precise location and elevation of the observer, and the local topography.
In the winter in Barrow during 2017, the Sun is continuously below the horizon for 2.1 months, setting at 1:36 PM on November 18, and not rising again until 1:18 PM on January 22. As such, the sun is continuously below the horizon for the entire month of December.
Hours of Daylight and Twilight in December
Daylight saving time is observed in Barrow during 2017, but it neither starts nor ends during December, so the entire month is in standard time.
Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time in December
We base the humidity comfort level on the dew point, as it determines whether perspiration will evaporate from the skin, thereby cooling the body. Lower dew points feel drier and higher dew points feel more humid. Unlike temperature, which typically varies significantly between night and day, dew point tends to change more slowly, so while the temperature may drop at night, a muggy day is typically followed by a muggy night.
The chance that a given day will be muggy in Barrow is essentially constant during December, remaining around 0% throughout.
Humidity Comfort Levels in December
This section discusses the wide-area hourly average wind vector (speed and direction) at 10 meters above the ground. The wind experienced at any given location is highly dependent on local topography and other factors, and instantaneous wind speed and direction vary more widely than hourly averages.
The average hourly wind speed in Barrow is essentially constant during December, remaining within 0.1 miles per hour of 7.3 miles per hour throughout.
For reference, on January 10, the windiest day of the year, the daily average wind speed is 7.6 miles per hour, while on June 30, the calmest day of the year, the daily average wind speed is 5.7 miles per hour.
The lowest daily average wind speed during December is 7.2 miles per hour on December 3.
Average Wind Speed in December
Wind Direction in December
Barrow is located near a large body of water (e.g., ocean, sea, or large lake). This section reports on the wide-area average surface temperature of that water.
The average surface water temperature in Barrow is essentially constant during December, remaining around 29°F throughout.
Average Water Temperature in December
This section discusses the total daily incident shortwave solar energy reaching the surface of the ground over a wide area, taking full account of seasonal variations in the length of the day, the elevation of the Sun above the horizon, and absorption by clouds and other atmospheric constituents. Shortwave radiation includes visible light and ultraviolet radiation.
The average daily incident shortwave solar energy in Barrow is essentially constant during December, remaining around 0.0 kWh throughout.
The lowest average daily incident shortwave solar energy during December is -0.0 kWh on December 18.
Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy in December
For the purposes of this report, the geographical coordinates of Barrow are 71.291 deg latitude, -156.789 deg longitude, and 3 ft elevation.
The topography within 2 miles of Barrow is essentially flat, with a maximum elevation change of 56 feet and an average elevation above sea level of 13 feet. Within 10 miles is also essentially flat (79 feet). Within 50 miles is essentially flat (108 feet).
The area within 2 miles of Barrow is covered by water (52%), sparse vegetation (21%), grassland (14%), and bare soil (12%), within 10 miles by water (64%) and grassland (20%), and within 50 miles by water (74%) and herbaceous vegetation (10%).
This report illustrates the typical weather in Barrow year round, based on a statistical analysis of historical hourly weather reports and model reconstructions from January 1, 1980 to December 31, 2016.
Temperature and Dew Point
There is only a single weather station, Wiley Post-Will Rogers Memorial Airport, in our network suitable to be used as a proxy for the historical temperature and dew point records of Barrow.
At a distance of 1 kilometers from Barrow, closer than our threshold of 150 kilometers, this station is deemed sufficiently nearby to be relied upon as our primary source for temperature and dew point records.
The station records are corrected for the elevation difference between the station and Barrow according to the International Standard Atmosphere , and by the relative change present in the MERRA-2 satellite-era reanalysis between the two locations.
Please note that the station records themselves may additionally have been back-filled using other nearby stations or the MERRA-2 reanalysis.
All data relating to the Sun's position (e.g., sunrise and sunset) are computed using astronomical formulas from the book, Astronomical Tables of the Sun, Moon and Planets , by Jean Meeus.
All other weather data, including cloud cover, precipitation, wind speed and direction, and solar flux, come from NASA's MERRA-2 Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis . This reanalysis combines a variety of wide-area measurements in a state-of-the-art global meteorological model to reconstruct the hourly history of weather throughout the world on a 50-kilometer grid.
Land Use data comes from the Global Land Cover SHARE database , published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
Elevation data comes from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) , published by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
Names, locations, and time zones of places and some airports come from the GeoNames Geographical Database .
Time zones for aiports and weather stations are provided by AskGeo.com .
Maps are © Esri, with data from National Geographic, Esri, DeLorme, NAVTEQ, UNEP-WCMC, USGS, NASA, ESA, METI, NRCAN, GEBCO, NOAA, and iPC.