Kodiak cold snap features coldest temperatures of the season so far, pales in comparison to record low

Kodiak temperatures dropped into the single digits over the past few days, with a low of -1° Tuesday and Wednesday morning. Although these are the coldest temperatures so far this season, meteorologists say this is not out of the ordinary for Kodiak Island winters.

Climatologist Rick Thoman with the Alaska Center for Climate Assessment and Policy, ACCAP under the University of Alaska Fairbanks, said the last two days of January dropped below zero in Kodiak.

“The last time that we had two days in a winter in Kodiak with temperatures at or below zero was in 2019-2020,” Thoman said. “So we don’t have to go back too far to find that.”

Climate data for at least part of Kodiak Island has been recorded for more than a hundred years, dating back to pre-1900. But Thoman said the historical record has gaps of several years and is inconsistent in terms of where the data was gathered, how far away the location was from the water, etc.

All that said, Kodiak Island hasn’t seen a record low temperature in January, in over 30 years.

“The record low temperature for Kodiak is -16° below, and that was recorded in January, 1989. That was a super cold late January all across the state,” he explained.

Much of the rest of Alaska experienced a cold snap this week/weekend as well, including areas of Western, Interior and South Central. Thoman says so far though as of Wednesday morning, nowhere in the state has set a local daily record low temperature yet.

It seems during the rest of this week, the city of Kodiak hits the tail end of the current cold snap. The weather forecast calls for high temperatures in the 20’s.

For the rest of the communities on the island, Akhiok, Karluk, Larsen Bay, Old Harbor, Ouzinkie and Port Lions, there is a slight chance of snow which could turn into rain later this week, going into the weekend.

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