While waiting to board my Alaska Airlines flight from Juneau to Seattle April 9, the all-to-common announcement came over the PA about a likely weather delay. As I happened to have my laptop handy with Internet access available, I quickly checked the Juneau airport weather observations. I did not see any weather issue that would keep the 737 on the ground. The ceiling and visibility were way above minimums. The wind was strong, but pretty well aligned with the runway…not too bad. Here are the observations in METAR format (click here for help in reading them).
PAJN 091353Z 12021G36KT 10SM -RA FEW018 BKN036 OVC050 06/02 A2918 RMK AO2 PK WND 12036/1349 PRESFR SLP880 P0001 T00560022
PAJN 091453Z 13028G37KT 7SM -RA FEW013 BKN032 OVC045 05/03 A2914 RMK AO2 PK WND 13041/1431 SLP867 VIS LWR S-SW P0000 60004 T00500028 58048 PAJN 091553Z 12022G33KT 3SM -RA FEW013 BKN032 OVC045 05/03 A2912 RMK AO2 PK WND 12036/1501 SLP859 P0004 T00500033
What was I missing? Before I could dig deeper, one of the pilots got on the PA and re-educated me, and the whole crowd–mostly seasoned Alaskan flyers with way more weather and aviation savvy than you’d find at a typical airport down south. (more…)