A downed tree blocks a lane of traffic on Hennings Way in East Anchorage on September 24, 2021.
© Marc Lester/ADN
A downed tree blocks a lane of traffic on Hennings Way in East Anchorage on September 24, 2021.
Snow across the Anchorage area Friday forced school closures, made roads slippery and caused power outages.

By Friday morning, unofficial snow totals included 13 inches on the Upper Hillside and about 4 inches in Eagle River, while much of the west side of Anchorage saw next to nothing, said Alan Shriver a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Anchorage.

The snow was continuing on the east side Friday morning, Shriver said, and was expected to continue mixed with rain throughout the day before tapering off by 8 p.m.

Power outages across the city were caused by the heavy, wet snow falling early in the season while many trees still have leaves -- heavy branches had fallen on lines, said Julie Hasquet, spokeswoman for Chugach Electric Association. Crews were working to restore power Friday morning.



"It's one of those very dynamic situations, and we just urge people to be patient while we get the power back," Hasquet said.

The Anchorage School District closed all schools for Friday due to road conditions.

Two-year-old Ramiar Harki plays in the snow in his East Anchorage yard on September 24, 2021.
© Marc Lester/ADN
Two-year-old Ramiar Harki plays in the snow in his East Anchorage yard on September 24, 2021.
"A decision to cancel after-school activities will be made no later than 12 p.m.," the district added in an early morning tweet.

Lumen Christi High School also announced it would be closed Friday, and the University of Alaska Anchorage and Alaska Pacific University called off in-person classes.

Snow started falling around 2:30 p.m. Thursday. Meteorologist Adam Przepiora said the storm system was moving into the Anchorage area from east to west.

The Anchorage Bowl was expected to see much less snow than the Hillside, according to the National Weather Service. Little to no accumulation is expected in West Anchorage.

Road temperatures are still warm, but Przepiora said some wet snow may still accumulate, causing or slippery conditions. Driving conditions along the Glenn Highway and in East Anchorage may be more dangerous during the morning commute, Przepiora said.

"It is early, so a lot of people don't have snow tires on yet," he said, and he urged caution on the roadways.

A woman waits at a bus stop on East 36th Avenue as snow falls on September 24, 2021.
© Marc Lester/ADN
A woman waits at a bus stop on East 36th Avenue as snow falls on September 24, 2021.
Citing snow in the forecast, the municipality of Anchorage this week announced that residents can drive with studded tires eight days early this year, starting Thursday.

The snow is expected to taper off after Friday afternoon, and Przeporia said high temperatures Friday are expected to be in the high 30s or near 40 degrees. Temperatures on the Hillside and at higher elevations are expected to be lower, and Przeporia said the snow could stick around.

The earliest date with at least an inch of snow recorded at the weather service office near Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport in West Anchorage was Sept. 24, 1981, Przeporia said.