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Snow and wind hit Bristol Bay region for a second time this week

KDLG in the snow Feb. 3 2022
Izzy Ross/KDLG
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Snow drifts up against the KDLG entrance on the morning of Feb. 3.

Another storm hit the Dillingham area today — the second storm this week. It’s dumped several inches of snow around town, and winds are gusting up to 50 miles per hour.

The National Weather Service has a winter weather advisory in effect until 6 p.m. tonight.

The Department of Transportation said this morning that the heavy snowfall has made travel treacherous, and advises everyone to stay home. The Dillingham school district is closed, as is the Bristol Bay Area Health Corporation and the Bristol Bay Housing Authority. The City Council meeting scheduled for tonight has been postponed until Feb. 10.

A moderate low pressure system in outer Bristol Bay has spread precipitation across the region, said University of Alaska climate specialist Rick Thoman.

“We’ve got cold air being pushed down the east side of the Kilbuck and Wood River mountains, and so that is enhancing the snowfall in the Dillingham area, just like earlier this week,” he said.

Dillingham school parking lot Feb. 3 2022
Izzy Ross/KDLG
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Several inches of snow fell in Dillingham on the morning of Feb. 3, 2022.

Along the Alaska Peninsula and in the Naknek area, most of the precipitation has been rain. And Thoman said there is good news.

“This storm is going to be moving out later today and evening, and precipitation will quickly come to an end,” he said.

Earlier this week, a storm blew in from the central Aleutians and hit Dillingham and Aleknagik. Because of the mountainous terrain, the air stayed just cool enough for snow to fall.

That storm dumped almost a month’s worth of precipitation on Aleknagik in a single day.

On average, Aleknagik sees about 1.9 inches of total liquid precipitation in February, according to figures taken from the Prism Climate Group. About 1.6 inches of liquid precipitation fell on Tuesday — that’s approximately 16 inches of snow.

Contact the author at izzy@kdlg.org or 907-842-2200.

Izzy Ross is the news director at KDLG, the NPR member station in Dillingham. She reports, edits, and hosts stories from around the Bristol Bay region, and collaborates with other radio stations across the state.
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