While the Kuskokwim ice around Bethel is decaying, the ice in the middle part of the river is more stable, according to Mark Leary, Director of Development and Operations for the Native Village of Napaimute. Leary also works as a citizen observer, reporting ice conditions to the National Weather Service.
As of Wednesday afternoon, Leary says that from Bethel to the bluffs below Kalskag, there’s no snow cover on the ice and shallow standing water scatters the surface.
From Kalskag to Aniak it’s the reverse. Snow covers the ice, and there’s no standing water.
The one dangerous area Leary saw from Bethel to Aniak was at the mouth of the Tuluksak River where the water has opened and ducks and seagulls have taken residence.
For the bird hunters, Leary says he also saw swan below Kalskag.