A statewide cold snap is underway in Alaska. Numerous locations through the central and western Interior recorded temperatures in range of minus 40 to minus 55. The Fairbanks International Airport recorded a temperature of 50 below zero for the first time since Jan. 29, 2012. Ralph M. Calhoun Memorial Airport in Tanana observed a temperature of minus 56.

Southcentral Alaska also experienced bitter cold, with the lowest temperatures recorded since 2012 for many areas. In Anchorage, Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport dropped to minus 13, the coldest temperature recorded in Anchorage since Jan. 29, 2012 when the thermometer dipped to 14 below zero. Many areas of the bowl were even colder, with temperatures dropping as low as 18 below zero in Eagle River and in East Anchorage.

The normal low temperature for Anchorage in late January is around 11 degrees. Biting cold temps were also recorded in the Matanuska and Susitna Valleys, with the Palmer Municipal Airport dipping to below minus 20 for the first time since 2012. Inland areas of the Kenai Peninsula also dropped to well below zero, and Homer dropped below zero for the first time since December 2013.


Residents can stay bundled up — even colder temperatures are on the way for Thursday morning. Temperatures in Anchorage are forecasted to drop between minus 15 and minus 20. The Matanuska and Susitna Valleys will see lows of 25 to 35 below zero. The Kenai-Soldotna area can expect lows of minus 25 to minus 30.

Most areas will continue to see temperatures below zero through Friday morning, before temperatures begin to rise later in the day. By the end of the weekend, temperatures should rise to near normal — and may go above normal by next week.

Rachael Penton can be reached via email or on Twitter @RachaelPenton.

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