Five Hours Until The Canary Sings

The record late date for Nenana, Alaska ice breakup is May 20 at 11:41 am, which occurred in 1964. That record will be broken in less than five hours, unless Homer gets his axe out.

ScreenHunter_357 May. 20 08.38

Nenana Ice Classic


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22 Responses to Five Hours Until The Canary Sings

  1. Robertv says:

    The Netherlands

    May 2013 is heading to become one of the top five coldest Mays since records began in 1901.

    May 1962 is currently the coldest on record with an average temperature of 6.4 Celsius. This month so far, the average temperature is 6.8 Celsius.

  2. Traitor In Chief says:

    Surely Big Oil is behind this. They must have paid the ice untold millions.

  3. Norm says:

    Maybe the CO2 is holding that tripod up?

  4. Turps says:

    Alaska is now on DST will this need to go till 12:41 to equal the record or was Alaska on DST back in ’64?

  5. Traitor In Chief, I think you may be partially correct. Except big oil didn’t pay the ice. Look closely. See the huge cables? Yep, that’s right, they are partially holding it up. And look at the base. You can barely see them, but there are floatation devices under the structure. Looking at the ice, itself… clearly photoshoped. I have it on good authority that the Koch brothers are behind this! I think an IRS investigation is in order.

  6. If a polar bear goes out on the ice and knocks the tripod over, what will that mean?

    • Scott says:

      It’d mean that it’s due to climate change because the polar bear had to go to the river ice since all the sea ice is gone this year.


    • terrence says:

      Well, if a human is NOT there to hear any noise, there will be noise? NO!!! = AGW

      Can we assume that the polar bear would hear the noise? NO!!! Also = AGW

      It also just might mean that the tripod did NOT make any noise when the bear knocked it over. Also = AGW

      I guess that I can be a climate scientist, eh! Anything and everything shows that AGW exists.

  7. kbray in california says:

    I’m surprised Homer isn’t out there ice fishing with dynamite…

  8. miked1947 says:

    A new record has been set!

    • miked1947 says:

      We do not yet know by how much but the pole is still standing.

    • I think that’s in another 12 minutes. The record 5/20 11:41 time was Alaska Standard Time. The website clock shows AKDT.

      • Ivan says:

        1964 was a leap year.
        We are still a day short.

      • kbray in california says:

        Hey Ivan,

        There have been about 12 leap years since 1964 adding 12 days to the calendar.
        Don’t you want to add all those extra days too ?
        By your thinking that would move the record to June 1st.
        Leap years are added to make sure that May 20th stays close to that location in the Earth’s orbit. Forget about adding another day, leap year corrects that imperfection.

      • Ivan says:

        Hey kbray,

        Do the maths.
        20 May 1964 = day 141
        20 May 2013 = day 140

        141 minus 140 = 1 day short.

      • The record keeping is based on date, not the day of the year. So it should be a new record.

    • Scott says:

      Exactly, I was thinking the same thing when people started being up the leap year thing. Calculation relative to equinox is the number 1 metric for sure and, though I didn’t calculate the number myself, actually puts this year at a disadvantage by about three hours. Considering that the tripod is still standing, it’s a very healthy record at this point.

      Honestly, I’m surprised. The 1964 record looked to me to be a ~3-sigma effect and therefore I was figuring we had little chance to break it.


  9. kbray in california says:

    Hey Ivan,

    January 1, 1964 was already off by 1 day.
    That’s why they add a day.
    Start your count on January 2, 1964 to allow for the date drift.
    That gives you 140 days.
    Now we’re even.

  10. Ben says:

    The pole is down…

  11. “…A Kenai couple has the only winning ticket in this year’s Nenana Ice Classic.

    The ice went out at 3:41 p.m. in Nenana on Monday and there was only one winning ticket holder in what was the latest breakup on record in the 97-year-old Nenana Ice Classic.

    The official winning time was 2:41 p.m. Alaska Standard Time because the contest uses standard, not daylight, time to determine the winner(s)…”

    Read more here:

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