Village Name: Quinhagak 

(Part of the I-AM Radio Network) 

Translator Status: The station was originally installed on July 25th, 2007, as a satellite-fed translator repeater for KIAM in Nenana.  In 2014 the resources became available to convert the station to retransmit KYKD in Bethel, a station much more geographically and culturally connected to Quinhagak than KIAM, some 500 miles away in the interior of Alaska.  During February, tests indicated that the KYKD signal could be received adequately off the air using a high-gain directional antenna.  Unfortunately, in June when the conversion was attempted, the signal was no longer strong enough to use, apparently becasue of the seasonal shift to summer atmospheric conditions.  The conversion was finally completed on August 19th, 2014, when the KYKD team installed powerful signal filtering and amplification equipment.  K232DW now receives the KYKD signal directly from Bethel at 100.1 MHz and "translates" it to 94.3 MHz for rebroadcast to the village and surrounding area.


Location:  Quinhagak is on the Kanektok River on the east shore of Kuskokwim Bay, less than a mile from the Bering Sea coast.  It is 71 miles south-southwest of Bethel.  The community lies at approximately 59.75° North Latitude and 161.92° West Longitude. 

The image below shows the village of Quinhagak and the dark sinuous line of the Kanektok River flowing into the the Bering Sea to the west (left) of the village.  Note that at the time this image was taken, the river was cutting into the north side of the airport runway.  A new and larger runway has since been constructed a couple of miles to the east of the village, off of this image to the right.






Climate: Quinhagak is located in a marine climate. Precipitation averages 22 inches, with 43 inches of snowfall annually. Summer temperatures average 41 to 57, winter temperatures average 6 to 24. Extremes have been measured from 82 to -34. 

History:  The Yup'ik name is Kuinerraq, meaning "new river channel."  Quinhagak is a long-established village whose origin has been dated to 1000 AD.  It was the first village on the lower Kuskokwim to have sustained contact with Europeans.  Gavril Sarichev reported the village on a map in 1826.  After the purchase of Alaska in 1867, the Alaska Commercial Company sent annual supply ships to Quinhagak with goods for Kuskokwim River trading posts.  Supplies were lightered to shore from the ship and stored in a building on Warehouse Creek. A Moravian mission was built in 1893.  There were many non-Natives in the village at that time; most were waiting for boats to go upriver.  In 1904, a mission store opened, followed by a post office in 1905 and a school in 1909.  Between 1906 and 1909, over 2,000 reindeer were brought in to the Quinhagak area.  They were managed for a time by the Native-owned Kuskokwim Reindeer Company, but the herd had scattered by the 1950s.  In 1915, the Kuskokwim River was charted, so goods were barged directly upriver to Bethel.  In 1928, the first electric plant opened; the first mail plane arrived in 1934.  The city was incorporated in 1975.


Culture:  The community is primarily Yup'ik Eskimos who fish commercially and are active in subsistence food gathering.  The sale, importation or possession of alcohol is banned in the village.


Indigenous Language:  Central Yup'ik


Federally Recognized Tribe:  Native Village of Kwinhagak, P.O. Box 149, 99655, telephone 5907-56-8165, and the local native corporation is Qanirtuuq, Incorporated, P.O. Box 69, 99655, telephone 907-556-8289.


Transportation:  Quinhagak relies on air transportation for passenger mail and cargo service. A state-owned gravel airstrip is available.  Float planes land on the Kanektok River.  A harbor and dock serves barges deliveries of heavy goods at least twice a year.  Boats, ATVs, snow machines, and some vehicles are used for local transportation.  Winter trails are marked to Eek (39 mi) and Goodnews (39 mi).


 2010 Census Data:  Total population was 669 persons, consisting of 347 males and 322 females.  The median age was 29 years.  Estimated population in 2013 was 690 persons.

Population by Race Value    Percent
White               15            2.24 %
American Indian and Alaska Native Alone             625          93.42 %
Black or African American                  0              0.00 %
Asian alone                 0            0.00 %
Pacific Islander alone                 3            0.45 %
Other alone                 1            0.15 %
Two or More Races               25            3.74 %


Housing Units Value
Total Housing Units 187
Occupied Housing (Households) 165
Vacant Housing 22
Vacant Due to Seasonal Use 4
Owner-Occupied Housing 134
Renter-Occupied Housing




Total Households 165
Average Household Size 5
Family Households 138
Non-Family Households 27
Pop. Living in Households 669
Pop. Living in Group Quarters 0


Municipal Facilities and Utilities:  Piped water and sewer, water treatment plant, sewage treatment, City Dock, trash hauler, landfill.


Power Source: Diesel generators and wind turbines - Alaska Village Electric Cooperative 


Cost of Gasoline: $7.00 per gallon as of July 2014







Some information on this page was copied from the State of Alaska Community Database where additional information is available.