First let me start off by saying that Anchorage Alaska does not suffer from total darkness, at any point of time during the year. Our shortest day is 5 hours, 27 minutes and 50 seconds of daylight and I can say after living in Seattle for 15 years, Anchorage has reflective qualities. Meaning that snow reflects the light and our nights are never as dark as the nights I've experienced in Seattle or even Arizona. The flip side of that is if the clouds are out and it's ready to snow, you may not actually see the sun during that 5 hours, 27 minutes and 50 seconds.
During the winter we definitely move slower towards our daily routines. The darkness slows our progress...but we have turned the corner and I CAN SEE THE LIGHT! We will now start gaining daylight...very exciting. Although it might only be 9 seconds today, the increases will start to make a positive change in our attitudes and motivation.
A little educational moment on Winter solstice darkness. The amount of daylight depends on your latitude, or distance from the equator. Brian Brettschneider an Alaska-based climatologist created a map that shows the daylight hours across the continent of North America, for the shortest day of the year.