Anchorage is located in South Central Alaska. It lies slightly farther north than Oslo, Stockholm, Helsinki and St. Petersburg, but not as far north as Reykjavik or Murmansk. It is northeast of the Alaska Peninsula, Kodiak Island, and Cook Inlet, due north of the Kenai Peninsula, northwest of Prince William Sound and Alaska Panhandle, and nearly due south of Mount McKinley/Denali.
The city is on a strip of coastal lowland and extends up the lower alpine slopes of the Chugach Mountains. To the south is Turnagain Arm, a fjord that has some of the world's highest tides. Knik Arm, another tidal inlet, lies to the west and north. The Chugach Mountains on the east form a boundary to development, but not to the city limits, which encompass part of the wild alpine territory of Chugach State Park.
The city's seacoast consists mostly of treacherous mudflats. Newcomers and tourists are warned not to walk in this area because of extreme tidal changes and the very fine glacial silt. Unwary victims have walked onto the solid seeming silt revealed when the tide is out and have become stuck in the mud. The two recorded instances of this occurred in 1961 and 1988.
Anchorage has a subarctic climate (the Köppen climate classification is Dfc) but with strong maritime influences that moderate temperatures. Average daytime summer temperatures range from approximately 55–78 °F (13–26°C); average daytime winter temperatures are about 5–30 °F (-
Average January low and high temperatures at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport (PANC) are 9–22 °F (-
Summers are typically mild (although cool compared to the contiguous US and even interior Alaska), and it can rain frequently. Average July low and high temperatures are 52–66 °F (11–19°C) and the hottest reading ever recorded was 92°F (33.3°C) on June 25, 1953. The average annual precipitation at the airport is around 16(406 mm). Anchorage's latitude causes summer days to be very long and winter daylight hours to be very short. The city is often cloudy during the winter, which decreases the amount of sunlight experienced by residents.
Owing to its proximity to active volcanoes, ash hazards are a significant, though infrequent, occurrence. The most recent notable volcanic activiy centered on the multiple eruptions of Mt.Redoubt during March–April 2009, resulting in a 25,000-
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