The winter solstice was Sunday, and it’s a pretty big deal around here. We even celebrate it with fireworks. It marks the shortest day of the year, with only 3 hours and 42 minutes of daylight in Fairbanks. The sun rose at 10:50 am and set at 2:42 pm here on Sunday.
We look forward to the winter solstice for months, because it means that the day after the solstice we are no longer loosing daylight. From here on out we are gaining daylight! Hallelujah! (even if it was only about 9 seconds yesterday and 28 seconds today.) Whenever anyone comments about the increasing darkness during the day, we crazy Alaskans always say something like, “Well, just think, in only ____ days we will be gaining daylight.” And then we laugh because the winter solstice marks the first official day of winter and the difference in the light won’t really be that noticeable for a good month and a half. But, some how it makes us feel better to say it anyway.
This time-lapse video gives you a great idea of what our days are like here. This was taken at the University of Alaska Fairbanks campus.