Rain on Snow Events (Bill Simpson)

Video Shot in: 2023

In this video, Bill Simpson reflects on changes he’s observed over the past 13 years, particularly focusing on the Arctic environment and his experiences with remote sensing and fieldwork. He discusses the shift in his work towards more remote sensing and less fieldwork, noting a reduction in his visits to the North Slope and the impact of COVID-19 restrictions on his ability to connect deeply with people in the Arctic. Simpson expresses his continued love for winter and the Arctic landscape but is struck by the noticeable environmental changes in Fairbanks, such as the development of sinkholes and the increasing prevalence of rain-on-snow events. He describes a significant rain-on-snow event around Christmas 2021, highlighting its unusual timing and the profound impact on local infrastructure, travel safety, and wildlife. This event created challenges like impassable roads and difficulties for animals, underscoring the tangible effects of climate change. Simpson emphasizes the importance of adapting to these changes while maintaining a connection to the natural world, even as the conditions evolve.