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Colder temperatures move into Interior Alaska

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Posted: Sunday, December 16, 2012 12:08 am

FAIRBANKS — Just as the National Weather Service predicted, the temperature plummeted Friday night and continued to go south Saturday.

The lowest temperature so far this winter — 41 degrees below zero — was recorded at Fairbanks International Airport just before noon Saturday, and the weather service said it probably will be just as cold, if not colder, today.

“Overall, there should be less clouds on Sunday, and the air mass will remain cold,” said meteorologist Rick Thoman at the National Weather Service office in Fairbanks.

A low pressure system in Southeast Alaska began drawing cold air from the western Interior on Friday, Thoman said. The temperature dropped almost 30 degrees Friday, from a high of 1 above at 7:08 a.m. to a low of 27 below at 10:29 p.m., and it continued to drop throughout Saturday.

Temperatures west of Fairbanks were even colder. A low of 51 below was recorded in the Koyukuk River village of Huslia on Saturday morning. It was 49 below in Manley Hot Springs, 48 below in Galena and 46 below in Tanana.

The good news is temperatures should begin to moderate slightly Monday night, and there is a chance of snow Tuesday, Thoman said.

“Monday will be milder, but it’s not going to be a heat wave,” he said.

Highs this week are expected to be 10 below to 20 below with lows around 25 below to 30 below, according to the National Weather Service’s seven-day forecast.

The cold temperatures are par for the course at this time of year, Thoman said.

“You know what they say about December,” he said, “the power of the sun is none.”

Contact the newsroom at 459-7572.

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