Arctic CyclonesIntroduction

Photo of Snow Blower in Barrow, Alaska

Cyclones in the Arctic present a significant forecast challenge, bringing precipitation, high winds, and high seas. Cyclones can also lead to warming, by either bringing warm air from the south or by mixing out the wintertime inversion. Visibility is reduced when warm, moist air is advected over cold SSTs or sea ice, resulting in extensive fog or low stratus. Cyclone-induced strong winds can lead to blowing snow, which also reduces visibility.