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Average Weather at Whittier Airport Alaska, United States

At Whittier Airport, the summers are cool, wet, and overcast and the winters are long, freezing, snowy, and mostly cloudy. Over the course of the year, the temperature typically varies from 20°F to 58°F and is rarely below 3°F or above 66°F.

Climate Summary

freezingvery coldcoldcoolcoldvery coldfreezingJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec38%38%26%26%overcastclearprecipitation: 11.2 inprecipitation: 11.2 in4.5 in4.5 inmuggy: 0%muggy: 0%0%0%drydrytourism score: 1.2tourism score: 1.20.00.0
Click on each chart for more information.

Based on the tourism score, the best time of year to visit Whittier Airport for warm-weather activities is from late June to late July.

Temperature

The warm season lasts for 3.1 months, from June 2 to September 6, with an average daily high temperature above 52°F. The hottest day of the year is July 7, with an average high of 58°F and low of 46°F.

The cold season lasts for 4.8 months, from November 2 to March 27, with an average daily high temperature below 34°F. The coldest day of the year is January 20, with an average low of 20°F and high of 28°F.

Average High and Low Temperature

The daily average high (red line) and low (blue line) temperature, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted lines are the corresponding average perceived temperatures.

The figure below shows you a compact characterization of the entire year of hourly average temperatures. The horizontal axis is the day of the year, the vertical axis is the hour of the day, and the color is the average temperature for that hour and day.

Average Hourly Temperature

Average Hourly Temperature at Whittier AirportJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec12 AM4 AM8 AM12 PM4 PM8 PM12 AMfreezingfreezingvery coldvery coldcold
The average hourly temperature, color coded into bands: frigid < 15°F < freezing < 32°F < very cold < 45°F < cold < 55°F < cool < 65°F < comfortable < 75°F < warm < 85°F < hot < 95°F < sweltering. The shaded overlays indicate night and civil twilight.

Årdalstangen, Norway (3,919 miles away) is the far-away foreign place with temperatures most similar to Whittier Airport (view comparison).

Clouds

At Whittier Airport, the average percentage of the sky covered by clouds experiences mild seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The clearer part of the year at Whittier Airport begins around February 16 and lasts for 2.2 months, ending around April 22. On March 16, the clearest day of the year, the sky is clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 38% of the time, and overcast or mostly cloudy 62% of the time.

The cloudier part of the year begins around April 22 and lasts for 9.8 months, ending around February 16. On December 18, the cloudiest day of the year, the sky is overcast or mostly cloudy 74% of the time, and clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 26% of the time.

Cloud Cover Categories

Cloud Cover Categories at Whittier AirportclearercloudiercloudierJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%10%90%20%80%30%70%40%60%50%50%60%40%70%30%80%20%90%10%100%0%Mar 1638%Mar 1638%Dec 1826%Dec 1826%Apr 2232%Apr 2232%clearpartly cloudymostly cloudyovercastmostly clear
The percentage of time spent in each cloud cover band, categorized by the percentage of the sky covered by clouds: clear < 20% < mostly clear < 40% < partly cloudy < 60% < mostly cloudy < 80% < overcast.

Precipitation

A wet day is one with at least 0.04 inches of liquid or liquid-equivalent precipitation. The chance of wet days at Whittier Airport varies throughout the year.

The wetter season lasts 6.7 months, from August 1 to February 21, with a greater than 51% chance of a given day being a wet day. The chance of a wet day peaks at 61% on September 28.

The drier season lasts 5.4 months, from February 21 to August 1. The smallest chance of a wet day is 40% on June 24.

Among wet days, we distinguish between those that experience rain alone, snow alone, or a mixture of the two. Based on this categorization, the most common form of precipitation at Whittier Airport changes throughout the year.

Rain alone is the most common for 6.0 months, from April 26 to October 27. The highest chance of a day with rain alone is 58% on September 22.

Snow alone is the most common for 4.0 months, from November 20 to March 22. The highest chance of a day with snow alone is 34% on December 13.

Mixed snow and rain is the most common for 1.9 months, from March 22 to April 26 and from October 27 to November 20. The highest chance of a day with mixed snow and rain is 27% on April 9.

Daily Chance of Precipitation

Daily Chance of Precipitation at Whittier AirportsnowmixedrainsnowJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100%Sep 2861%Sep 2861%Jun 2440%Jun 2440%Mar 2249%Mar 2249%Apr 2647%Apr 2647%Nov 2054%Nov 2054%Jan 156%Jan 156%Aug 151%Aug 151%snowmixedrain
The percentage of days in which various types of precipitation are observed, excluding trace quantities: rain alone, snow alone, and mixed (both rain and snow fell in the same day).

Rainfall

To show variation within the months and not just the monthly totals, we show the rainfall accumulated over a sliding 31-day period centered around each day of the year. Whittier Airport experiences extreme seasonal variation in monthly rainfall.

Rain falls throughout the year at Whittier Airport. The most rain falls during the 31 days centered around September 20, with an average total accumulation of 11.0 inches.

The least rain falls around March 8, with an average total accumulation of 1.3 inches.

Average Monthly Rainfall

The average rainfall (solid line) accumulated over the course of a sliding 31-day period centered on the day in question, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted line is the corresponding average liquid-equivalent snowfall.

Snowfall

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. Colder, drier snow tends to be on the higher end of that range and warmer, wetter snow on the lower end.

As with rainfall, we consider the snowfall accumulated over a sliding 31-day period centered around each day of the year. Whittier Airport experiences extreme seasonal variation in monthly liquid-equivalent snowfall.

The snowy period of the year lasts for 8.6 months, from September 16 to June 2, with a sliding 31-day liquid-equivalent snowfall of at least 0.1 inches. The most snow falls during the 31 days centered around December 20, with an average total liquid-equivalent accumulation of 6.1 inches.

The snowless period of the year lasts for 3.4 months, from June 2 to September 16. The least snow falls around July 26, with an average total liquid-equivalent accumulation of 0.0 inches.

Average Liquid-Equivalent Monthly Snowfall

Average Liquid-Equivalent Monthly Snowfall at Whittier AirportsnowsnowJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 in2 in4 in6 in8 in10 in12 inDec 206.1 inDec 206.1 inJul 260.0 inJul 260.0 inFeb 55.7 inFeb 55.7 inSep 160.1 inSep 160.1 inJun 20.1 inJun 20.1 in
The average liquid-equivalent snowfall (solid line) accumulated over the course of a sliding 31-day period centered on the day in question, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted line is the corresponding average rainfall.

Sun

The length of the day at Whittier Airport varies extremely over the course of the year. In 2017, the shortest day is December 21, with 5 hours, 36 minutes of daylight; the longest day is June 20, with 19 hours, 11 minutes of daylight.

Hours of Daylight and Twilight

Hours of Daylight and Twilight at Whittier AirportJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 hr24 hr4 hr20 hr8 hr16 hr12 hr12 hr16 hr8 hr20 hr4 hr24 hr0 hr12 hr, 11 minMar 2012 hr, 11 minMar 2019 hr, 11 minJun 2019 hr, 11 minJun 2012 hr, 13 minSep 2212 hr, 13 minSep 225 hr, 37 minDec 215 hr, 37 minDec 21nightnightday
The number of hours during which the Sun is visible (black line). From bottom (most yellow) to top (most gray), the color bands indicate: full daylight, twilight (civil, nautical, and astronomical), and full night.

The earliest sunrise is at 4:20 AM on June 19, and the latest sunrise is 5 hours, 45 minutes later at 10:06 AM on December 26. The earliest sunset is at 3:40 PM on December 16, and the latest sunset is 7 hours, 52 minutes later at 11:32 PM on June 22.

Daylight saving time (DST) is observed at Whittier Airport during 2017, starting in the spring on March 12, lasting 7.8 months, and ending in the fall on November 5.

Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time

Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time at Whittier AirportJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec2 AM4 AM6 AM8 AM10 AM12 PM2 PM4 PM6 PM8 PM10 PM12 AM2 AMJun 194:20 AMJun 194:20 AM11:32 PMJun 2211:32 PMJun 22Dec 163:40 PMDec 163:40 PM10:06 AMDec 2610:06 AMDec 26Mar 12DSTMar 12DSTDSTNov 5DSTNov 5daynightnightnightnightSolarMidnightSolarMidnightSolarNoonSunriseSunset
The solar day over the course of the year 2017. From bottom to top, the black lines are the previous solar midnight, sunrise, solar noon, sunset, and the next solar midnight. The day, twilights (civil, nautical, and astronomical), and night are indicated by the color bands from yellow to gray. The transitions to and from daylight saving time are indicated by the 'DST' labels.

Humidity

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 perceived humidity level at Whittier Airport, as measured by the percentage of time in which the humidity comfort level is muggy, oppressive, or miserable, does not vary significantly over the course of the year, remaining a virtually constant 0% throughout.

Humidity Comfort Levels

Humidity Comfort Levels at Whittier AirportJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100%Feb 100%Feb 100%Aug 120%Aug 120%drydry
The percentage of time spent at various humidity comfort levels, categorized by dew point: dry < 55°F < comfortable < 60°F < humid < 65°F < muggy < 70°F < oppressive < 75°F < miserable.

Wind

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 at Whittier Airport experiences significant seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The windier part of the year lasts for 7.3 months, from September 10 to April 18, with average wind speeds of more than 6.8 miles per hour. The windiest day of the year is January 8, with an average hourly wind speed of 8.6 miles per hour.

The calmer time of year lasts for 4.7 months, from April 18 to September 10. The calmest day of the year is June 25, with an average hourly wind speed of 5.0 miles per hour.

Average Wind Speed

Average Wind Speed at Whittier AirportwindywindyJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0 mph2 mph4 mph6 mph8 mph10 mph12 mph14 mph16 mphJan 88.6 mphJan 88.6 mphJun 255.0 mphJun 255.0 mphSep 106.8 mphSep 106.8 mphApr 186.8 mphApr 186.8 mph
The average of mean hourly wind speeds (dark gray line), with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

The predominant average hourly wind direction at Whittier Airport is from the east throughout the year.

Wind Direction

Wind Direction at Whittier AirportJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%20%80%40%60%60%40%80%20%100%0%eastnorthsouthwest
The percentage of hours in which the mean wind direction is from each of the four cardinal wind directions (north, east, south, and west), excluding hours in which the mean wind speed is less than 1 mph. The lightly tinted areas at the boundaries are the percentage of hours spent in the implied intermediate directions (northeast, southeast, southwest, and northwest).

Water Temperature

Whittier Airport 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 water temperature experiences some seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The time of year with warmer water lasts for 2.8 months, from June 22 to September 17, with an average temperature above 52°F. The day of the year with the warmest water is August 4, with an average temperature of 56°F.

The time of year with cooler water lasts for 5.0 months, from December 5 to May 6, with an average temperature below 40°F. The day of the year with the coolest water is February 19, with an average temperature of 36°F.

Average Water Temperature

The daily average water temperature (purple line), with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

Best Time of Year to Visit

To characterize how pleasant the weather is at Whittier Airport throughout the year, we compute two travel scores.

The tourism score favors clear, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 65°F and 80°F. Based on this score, the best time of year to visit Whittier Airport for general outdoor tourist activities is from late June to late July, with a peak score in the first week of July.

Tourism Score

Tourism Score at Whittier AirportJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec02468101.21.20.00.0precipitationprecipitationcloudscloudstemperaturetemperaturetourism score
The tourism score (filled area), and its constituents: the temperature score (red line), the cloud cover score (blue line), and the precipitation score (green line).

The beach/pool score favors clear, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 75°F and 90°F. Based on this score, the best time of year to visit Whittier Airport for hot-weather activities is from early to mid July.

Beach/Pool Score

Beach/Pool Score at Whittier AirportJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec02468100.00.00.00.0precipitationprecipitationcloudsclouds
The beach/pool score (filled area), and its constituents: the temperature score (red line), the cloud cover score (blue line), and the precipitation score (green line).

Methodology

For each hour between 8:00 AM and 9:00 PM of each day in the analysis period (1980 to 2016), independent scores are computed for perceived temperature, cloud cover, and total precipitation. Those scores are combined into a single hourly composite score, which is then aggregated into days, averaged over all the years in the analysis period, and smoothed.

Our cloud cover score is 10 for fully clear skies, falling linearly to 9 for mostly clear skies, and to 1 for fully overcast skies.

Our precipitation score, which is based on the three-hour precipitation centered on the hour in question, is 10 for no precipitation, falling linearly to 9 for trace precipitation, and to 0 for 0.04 inches of precipitation or more.

Our tourism temperature score is 0 for perceived temperatures below 50°F, rising linearly to 9 for 65°F, to 10 for 75°F, falling linearly to 9 for 80°F, and to 1 for 90°F or hotter.

Our beach/pool temperature score is 0 for perceived temperatures below 65°F, rising linearly to 9 for 75°F, to 10 for 82°F, falling linearly to 9 for 90°F, and to 1 for 100°F or hotter.

Growing Season

Definitions of the growing season vary throughout the world, but for the purposes of this report, we define it as the longest continuous period of non-freezing temperatures (≥ 32°F) in the year (the calendar year in the Northern Hemisphere, or from July 1 until June 30 in the Southern Hemisphere).

The growing season at Whittier Airport typically lasts for 4.4 months (134 days), from around May 16 to around September 27, rarely starting before April 28 or after June 5, and rarely ending before September 9 or after October 15.

Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and the Growing Season

Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and the Growing Season at Whittier Airportgrowing seasonJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0%100%10%90%20%80%30%70%40%60%50%50%60%40%70%30%80%20%90%10%100%0%May 1650%May 1650%Sep 2750%Sep 2750%Jun 590%Jun 590%Sep 990%Sep 990%Apr 2810%Apr 2810%Oct 1510%Oct 1510%0%Feb 210%Feb 21Jul 25100%Jul 25100%frigidfreezingvery coldcoldcool
The percentage of time spent in various temperature bands: frigid < 15°F < freezing < 32°F < very cold < 45°F < cold < 55°F < cool < 65°F < comfortable < 75°F < warm < 85°F < hot < 95°F < sweltering. The black line is the percentage chance that a given day is within the growing season.

Growing degree days are a measure of yearly heat accumulation used to predict plant and animal development, and defined as the integral of warmth above a base temperature, discarding any excess above a maximum temperature. In this report, we use a base of 50°F and a cap of 86°F.

Based on growing degree days alone, the first spring blooms at Whittier Airport should appear around July 9, only rarely appearing before June 23 or after August 15.

Growing Degree Days

Growing Degree Days at Whittier AirportJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec0°F50°F100°F150°F200°F250°F300°F350°FJul 990°FJul 990°FDec 31219°FDec 31219°F
The average growing degree days accumulated over the course of the year, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

Solar Energy

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 experiences extreme seasonal variation over the course of the year.

The brighter period of the year lasts for 2.9 months, from April 28 to July 25, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter above 4.3 kWh. The brightest day of the year is June 18, with an average of 5.4 kWh.

The darker period of the year lasts for 4.1 months, from October 16 to February 21, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter below 1.2 kWh. The darkest day of the year is December 21, with an average of 0.1 kWh.

Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy

The average daily shortwave solar energy reaching the ground per square meter (orange line), with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

Topography

For the purposes of this report, the geographical coordinates of Whittier Airport are 60.777 deg latitude, -148.721 deg longitude, and 1,480 ft elevation.

The topography within 2 miles of Whittier Airport contains extreme variations in elevation, with a maximum elevation change of 3,937 feet and an average elevation above sea level of 1,232 feet. Within 10 miles also contains extreme variations in elevation (5,991 feet). Within 50 miles also contains extreme variations in elevation (10,561 feet).

The area within 2 miles of Whittier Airport is covered by snow and glaciers (27%), shrubs (25%), sparse vegetation (22%), and bare soil (11%), within 10 miles by snow and glaciers (35%) and shrubs (19%), and within 50 miles by shrubs (22%) and water (22%).

Data Sources

This report illustrates the typical weather at Whittier Airport, 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

Whittier Airport has a weather station that reported reliably enough during the analysis period that we have included it in our network. When available, historical temperature and dew point measurements are taken directly from this weather station. These records are obtained from NOAA's Integrated Surface Hourly data set, falling back on ICAO METAR records as required.

In the case of missing or erroneous measurements from this station, we fall back on records from nearby stations, adjusted according to typical seasonal and diurnal intra-station differences. For a given day of the year and hour of the day, the fallback station is selected to minimize the prediction error over the years for which there are measurements for both stations.

The stations on which we may fall back include but are not limited to Portage, Portage Glacier; Palmer Municipal Airport; Seward Airport; Birchwood Airport; Bryant Army Heliport; New Wasilla Airport; Elmendorf Air Force Base; and Merrill Field Airport.

Other Data

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.

Disclaimer

The information on this site is provided as is, without any assurances as to its accuracy or suitability for any purpose. Weather data is prone to errors, outages, and other defects. We assume no responsibility for any decisions made on the basis of the content presented on this site.

We draw particular cautious attention to our reliance on the MERRA-2 model-based reconstructions for a number of important data series. While having the tremendous advantages of temporal and spatial completeness, these reconstructions: (1) are based on computer models that may have model-based errors, (2) are coarsely sampled on a 50 km grid and are therefore unable to reconstruct the local variations of many microclimates, and (3) have particular difficulty with the weather in some coastal areas, especially small islands.

We further caution that our travel scores are only as good as the data that underpin them, that weather conditions at any given location and time are unpredictable and variable, and that the definition of the scores reflects a particular set of preferences that may not agree with those of any particular reader.