People in this arctic town had a few minutes to catch a glimpse of the sun Saturday before it disappeared for 65 days, leaving Barrow in virtual darkness.
The sun rose at 1:04 p.m. and set 16 minutes later. It will appear again on Jan. 23, at 1:09 p.m.Temperatures already have been well below zero in Barrow, and the absence of the sun won't make the community of 1,500 residents much colder. Feeble solar radiation during the arctic autumn is no match for the cooling effects of permafrost, ice and snow, said Chuck Evans, manager of the U.S. Weather Service station here.
People don't seem disturbed about the long periods of darkness, Evans said.
"We've had a lot of them come up and worry about it the first year," he said. "But so far it's not really affected anyone."
But he said the lack of light can restrict weather station operations, like observing cloud movements.