At long last Kodiak is getting snow, which means sledding, snowmen, and snow plowing.
While the City of Kodiak has dealt with its fair share of ice, the city public works department now has an eye on its snowy roads.
Public Works director Mark Kozak says crews typically start earlier to avoid downtown’s on-street parking, which can be difficult to navigate around. Following Friday’s almost 3 inches of snow, he says plows hit the streets Saturday morning at 4 a.m.
Kozak says the city uses graters for street plowing and one loader with an adjustable plow that clears parking lots. As for pedestrians, a smaller vehicle called a trackless makes their walk a little easier.
“In the wintertime, we have both a blade for it a well as a snow blower, and so when the conditions are such that we can, we will use that to blow snow off of the walks. It also has a salter / spreader on the back so we spread – when we’re cleaning walks with that – we spread salt and chips on the walks.”
Despite the snow on Friday and the early morning snow on Monday, the chilly weather may not hold. Bill Ludwig, a senior forecaster at the National Weather Service office in Anchorage, says temperatures will rise this week, with highs in the 40s.
Still, in the bigger picture, the snow indicates a more “Kodiak” winter than in previous seasons.
“Last year and the year before were some of the warmest that we’ve ever – in fact in Alaska and Kodiak, last year was the warmest year that Kodiak has had and this year we’ve been transitioning to a pattern more typical of what we see in the wintertime where you have some warm spells and some cold, and recently of course it’s been fairly cold.”
Looking into the summer, Ludwig says temperatures should be more mixed and less consistently warm than they have been for the last couple of years.
Meanwhile, to make the recent weather easier for the community, Kozak asks residents to move their vehicles to better allow snow plow drivers to clean up the roads.