Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
Best rate guarantee or we’ll refund the difference

Anchorage Northern Lights Forecast

Aurora and Weather Forecasts

Though Fairbanks is often assumed to be the only northern lights (aurora borealis) viewing location in Alaska, there are some distinct advantages to chasing the lights in and around Anchorage and Southcentral Alaska. This Anchorage northern lights forecast page is designed to provide you information to aid in your search for a northern lights experience during a visit in the Anchorage area. Join us on our Anchorage Aurora Quest – Anchorage Northern Lights Tour for a guided experience, showing you the best viewing locations and providing instruction on how to photograph this amazing phenomena.
ANCHORAGE WEATHER

3-Day Aurora Forecast

Keep an eye out for our daily weather forecast update below and tour status as noted on the Anchorage Aurora Quest page.
The Kp estimate is for the maximum level forecasted for the time between 10:00 p.m. and 4:00 a.m. Alaska time.

WED APR 24 – Planetary K-Index
[predicted]: Kp 4.33

Additional Information Affecting Aurora Viewing

Moon

The moon will be a bright 97.51% waning gibbous and it will set at 5:56 a.m. The moon will impair viewing a quiet aurora.

Twilight

Astronomical twilight will begin at 12:03 a.m. and will end at 3:50 a.m. (Apr. 25). Twilight will not impair aurora viewing.

Solar Winds

Enhanced solar wind conditions are expected 24-26 Apr due to CH HSS influences and possible weak nearby transient passages.

Geomagnetic Field

Geomagnetic field activity is expected to reach unsettled levels on 24 Apr, due to negative polarity CH HSS influences. Unsettled and active levels are expected on 25 Apr from possible CME activity and the onset of positive polarity CH HSS influences. These conditions are anticipated to persist through 25 Apr. A chance for minor (G1) or greater geomagnetic storms does exist due to the eruptive activity noted above, although there are no obvious Earth-directed events discernible in the coronagraph imagery.

Commonly-Used Terms

Tonight's Weather Forecasts

The forecast is updated for the night of April 24.

Anchorage

Mostly cloudy, with a low around 35. Southeast wind 5 to 10 mph. Estimated cloud cover is 5% (12:00 a.m.) to 0% (4:00 a.m.)

Girdwood

Partly cloudy, with a low around 36. East wind around 5 mph. Estimated cloud cover is 0% (12:00 a.m.) to 0% (4:00 a.m.).

Seward

Mostly cloudy, with a low around 33. South wind around 5 mph becoming calm. Estimated cloud cover is 60% (12:00 a.m.) to 82% (4:00 a.m.).

Lower Matanuska Valley

Partly cloudy, with a low around 36. Southeast wind around 10 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph. Estimated cloud cover is 0% (12:00 a.m.) to 0% (4:00 a.m.).
 

Upper Matanuska Valley

Partly cloudy, with a low around 28. Northeast wind around 5 mph becoming calm. Estimated cloud cover at Lion Head is 0% (12:00 a.m.) to 0% (4:00 a.m.).

Willow

Mostly cloudy, with a low around 33. Calm wind. Estimated cloud cover is 0% (12:00 a.m.) to 0% (4:00 a.m.).
 

Talkeetna

Partly cloudy, with a low around 33. Northeast wind around 5 mph. Estimated cloud cover is 0% (12:00 a.m.) to 0% (4:00 a.m.).

Broad Pass

Mostly clear, with a low around 26. East wind around 5 mph. Estimated cloud cover is 0% (12:00 a.m.) to 0% (4:00 a.m.).

Latest Satellite Infrared Image of Alaska Cloud Cover

northern lights cloud cover graphic

Latest Satellite Infrared Image of Alaska Cloud Cover

northern lights cloud cover graphic
aurora forecast graphic

Current Aurora Ovation

Hemispheric Power is a measure of auroral activity that helps determine how bright and active auroras might be. It measures the rate of deposition of charged particles (mainly electrons and protons) into the atmosphere, where they collide with upper atmosphere particles and eventually stop. This process transfers their kinetic energy to the upper atmosphere. The higher the number, the more charged particles are depositing in the upper atmosphere. It’s measured on a scale of 5-150 GW [Gigawatts]. A power level of 20 or more is usually adequate to produce auroras visible to the naked eye. Hemispheric Power fluctuates and is a short range forecast that can be determined only up to around 30-90 minutes in advance with relative accuracy.

Comparing Anchorage and Fairbanks

Both cities fall within the auroral zone, which in Alaska is around 60°- 70° N. At this latitude, communities positioned beneath the band will see northern lights almost every dark, clear night. That said, the following information may help you decide which location suits your aurora quest best.

Average January Temperature

  • Anchorage: 17.1°F [-8°C]
  • Fairbanks: -7.9°F [-22°C]

Median Cloud Cover

  • Anchorage: 93% [clearest in March]
  • Fairbanks: 73-92% [clearest in February]

Landscape Features to Include in Aurora Photos

  • Anchorage: mountains, boreal and temperate rainforest, coastal areas, rivers and lakes with areas of open water for beautiful reflections throughout the season.
  • Fairbanks: hills, boreal forest, [open lakes and rivers early in the season].

Aurora Season

  • Anchorage: Aug 7 – May 7
  • Fairbanks: Aug 21 – Apr 21

Unique Advantages

  • Anchorage: Auroras often tend to be brighter and more active farther equatorward, relatively warmer temperatures, a variety of landscape features to include in aurora photography, longer aurora viewing season.
  • Fairbanks: More clear sky nights, more chance to see aurora during low activity periods.

Recommendations

Aurora chasers with a night or more in the Anchorage area have little to lose and much to gain by reserving an aurora tour here. Even those heading to or returning from Fairbanks will increase chances of seeing the northern lights, and enjoy the differing experience of each location. So if time allows, include both cities in your winter travel plan!

Anchorage Aurora Season 2022-23 Statistics

Late summer aurora borealis corona display over Anchorage.

0 %
Nights Clear Skies
0 %
Nights Too Cloudy
0 %
Aurora On Clear Sky Nights
0 %
Total Nights With Visible Aurora
0 %
Tour Success Rate
Book Now