Aleknagik, Alaska

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Aleknagik (pronounced /əˈlɛknəɡɪk/, ə-LEK-nə-gik) (Alaqnaqiq in Central Yup'ik) is a second class city in the Dillingham Census Area of the Unorganized Borough of the U.S. state of Alaska. The population was 221 at the 2000 census.


Geography and climate

Aleknagik is located at 59°16′42″N 158°37′23″W / 59.27833°N 158.62306°W / 59.27833; -158.62306 (59.278362, -158.622928)[2] (Sec. 31, T010S, R055W, Seward Meridian). Aleknagik is located in the Bristol Bay Recording District.

Aleknagik is located at the head of Wood River on the southeast end of Lake Aleknagik, 16 miles northwest of its hub Dillingham. Aleknagik is named after Aleknagik Lake.

Aleknagik is in a transitional climate zone. The primary influence is maritime, although a continental climate does affect the weather here. Average summer temperatures range from 30 to 66 degrees Fahrenheit. Average winter temperatures range from 4 to 30 degrees Fahrenheit. Annual precipitation is 20 to 35 inches and annual snowfall is 93 inches. Fog and low clouds are common during July and August, and may preclude access. The lake and river are ice-free from June through mid-November.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 18.8 square miles (48.6 km²), of which, 11.6 square miles (29.9 km²) of it is land and 7.2 square miles (18.7 km²) of it (38.47%) is water.

History and culture

Wood River and Aleknagik Lake have been used historically as summer fish camps. The spelling of the Yupik word "Aleknagik" has been disputed, but since Yupik was an unwritten language, the name, which was described by the early 1930 resident family called Yako was said to 'Wrong Way Home," because Nushagak River residents returning to their homes upriver would sometimes become lost in the fog and find themselves swept up the Wood River with the tide, inadvertently arriving at Aleknagik Lake.

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