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Thread: Mid-September Weather in the Brooks

  1. #1
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    Question Mid-September Weather in the Brooks

    I'm heading to the Brooks Range for the first time in mid-September. Given that some of you have spent lots of time up there, I thought I'd float this question out to the forum. What are the weather conditions that you've personally encountered in the Brooks during that time of year?

    I'll be on the eastern end and I anticipate highs in the 40's and lows in the 20's. I'm assuming the western region gets more precip than the east, being closer to the ocean. I found the following website with some useful information, but it doesn't have data regarding precipitation.

    https://weatherspark.com/averages/33...-United-States

    Any personal experiences/anecdotes regarding weather in the Brooks would be appreciated. Thanks!

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    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    I would never narrow down my estimated tempts to a 20 degree range. I almost always figure at least 40 degree range. For you I'd say between 5-45 degrees. Don't forget windchill, that can become a factor once you get below freezing, to a point of it becoming life threatening.
    The brooks range and north gets minimal precipitation, then again, last year it rained for several weeks, your more likely to encounter snow than you are rain. Be geared for winter, then you'll be fine if it actually feels like fall! Bring a book, gonna have some darkness by then as well.
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    Member willphish4food's Avatar
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    Flying that time of year can become really sketchy. Heavy snowfall has been known to ground flights and shut down bush runways. If on a river, be prepared for wild level changes. The huge gravel bar you go to sleep on could be a little swirl in the river the next day, or the river could drop quickly overnight and over the course of a trip.

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    Well I've been there the last two years during that time frame. Here was our weather
    0 degrees
    65 degrees
    Rain
    Snow
    Wind
    More rain
    Cold arse ice rain
    5 straight days of driving rain/slush
    Days of ridiculous heat for that time of year.
    Cold arse days that I thought it was November
    Did I mention snow

    Crappy
    Partly crapy
    Mostly crappy
    Somewhat crappy

    I think that covered it

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    Ha! Bear, that sounds like a vacation! Were you toward the eastern end of the Brooks for that weather?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bear View Post


    Crappy
    Partly crapy
    Mostly crappy
    Somewhat crappy

    I think that covered it
    In Alaska, that about covers it.

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    Eastern western? Sounds like the whole state in mid September!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bear View Post
    Well I've been there the last two years during that time frame. Here was our weather
    0 degrees
    65 degrees
    Rain
    Snow
    Wind
    More rain
    Cold arse ice rain
    5 straight days of driving rain/slush
    Days of ridiculous heat for that time of year.
    Cold arse days that I thought it was November
    Did I mention snow

    Crappy
    Partly crapy
    Mostly crappy
    Somewhat crappy

    I think that covered it
    Thats my experience too with the Brooks range in September. Plan to be wet, then cold, then colder, then hot, then wet again.

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    Member Roland on the River's Avatar
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    Very good info by VERY well experienced fellas pleas heed their advice.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BRWNBR View Post
    Eastern western? Sounds like the whole state in mid September!!
    I'd give my left nut for some cold weather in mid Sept. down here on the Kenai. Most the time it's still warm, wet, and buggy. You're da*n lucky if you get maybe just a couple days of frosty mornings during moose season....which we all know is so very nice.
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Johnboy, most people go early season brooks so they dont fight snow. I use a zero degree bag cause a few years ago i woke up to 13 degrees and frozen caribou meat on the denali. You will be above the arctic circle where it can snow in july. Pack for cold.
    I come home with an honestly earned feeling that something good has taken place. It makes no difference whether I got anything, it has to do with how the day was spent. Fred Bear

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    Member bushrat's Avatar
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    Keep in mind too that if you fly out and are able to use wheels, it may require skis to pick you up, and your air carrier may not have that ability to switch over that time of year. It's easy to get stranded mid-Sept north side of the range.

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    I was up there a few years back first week of Sept and I was pretty darn cold we had snow rain freezing rain and sunshine. Be forewarned you could easily get stuck in nasty weather and you should have extra supplies just in case. Our transport took all day getting us out with the fog we could hear him just on the other side of it flying couldn't get to us. Great trip but be very prepared with good gear or it can become a rescue instead of a hunt. What transport you using they pretty much shut down when we left on the 8th out of Happy Valley.

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    I don't know if makes any difference, but I won't be going all the way to the north slope. We'll fly with Wright Air into the southern edge of the mountains and float south.

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    I hunted ANWR every year for 17 years for sheep with my sons frequently flying with Wright. Wright is a good service. Most of the air taxies will not fly to the north side of the Brooks after the end of Aug - I hunted the north side. South side is a little different in that air taxies don't have to put up with the passes getting socked in. The advice you have rec'd so far is spot on. Good thing you are on the south side. I had some friends float the Colville on the north side of western Brooks and got frozen in - took several weeks before they could get extracted. Fortunately they got some food drops from the air taxi service. Go prepared and you should have a good hunt. Good luck.
    "Actions speak louder than words - 'nough said"

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    Don't let the weather dictate the actions on your hunt. Dress in layers and be prepared. If you let it effect you you will never leave the tent.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bear View Post
    Don't let the weather dictate the actions on your hunt. Dress in layers and be prepared. If you let it effect you you will never leave the tent.
    Yessir, I'm well acquainted with enduring misery on hunting trips. This will be a new level of isolation that I haven't experienced before, but we've picked up some gear that should help facilitate comfort. A TiGoat tipi and woodstove should be a game changer. I'll find out soon enough.

  18. #18

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    After guiding,trapping and having an air taxi there for years I am not sure where weatherspark is getting there info,it makes me laugh a little.
    I could almost always walk on the ice in front of my cabin on my birthday Sept.25th.
    As stated by most of the guys here the weather can be unpredictable. Wright's air service is one of the best,if i had to choose that would be my choice.
    Be prepared for anything and the idea of a good book is a good one.Good Luck.

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    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    Is there wood where your going? I've got almost zero wood where I hunt. A wood stove would not help me.
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    Wood will be plentiful. We should have ample supply.

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