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Alaska started out great but this month everything has gone to hell in a hand basket! The so called Polar Vortex has disrupted "normal" weather patterns. The massive high pressure plaguing the western half of the lower 48 has also directed the Jet Stream to flow due north. This has brought record warmth and rain to Alaska. It has been hitting the upper 40`s in Anchorage. Here in Fairbanks, our normal sub zero weather has turned into crippling freezing rain.

Alyeska has shut down indefinitely until the snow stabilizes and avalanches of biblical proportions have buried the Richardson Highway in Keystone Canyon between Thompson Pass and Valdez. Currently, all back country is a death trap due to massive amounts of rain and huge "glacier sized" avalanches are running to ground. This video was just released on the local news of the Keystone Canyon slide that formed an ice dam on the Lowe River, creating a huge and growing lake that is now over 60 feet deep covering the highway. When that dam goes, look out downstream!

Worst winter I have ever seen in my 22 years of living up here!

 

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God damn...

How do you even go about removing that? Does the highway department bother? Seems super dangerous to try but of the blockage broke seems that could be super dangerous too.
 

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I've never seen that chit b4... Glad the driver was safe.

One day I hope to do the Powder Highway mountains surrounding Calgary, and I heard chit like this can happen on many of the stretches within the highway/passes.

Thanks for posting OP!
 

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Looks like that road just got closed for the season. I don't see a way of clearing that without the help of mother nature.
 

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Wow! :blink:

Makes sense though. I'm making my first trip up to Alaska in about two months. Hopefully shit'll get straightened out by then.
 

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Wow! :blink:

Makes sense though. I'm making my first trip up to Alaska in about two months. Hopefully shit'll get straightened out by then.
Uuuuh... The same here :unsure: hope, they also have 20° slopes to ride :blink:

OP, is there a town downstream of that "dam"? Hope, nobody's actually threatened by that lake. We had a avalanche winter some years ago over here where many towns in valleys were cut off from civilization, avys burying all connecting streets but none of these huge avys was as massive as the one you showed. Scary!
 

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That damn ridge needs to go away. Seriously! I hadn't realized it would cause such massive troubles besides the ridiculous drought we are experiencing over here.
 

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Yep. I'm planning to get out to Tahoe when it finally starts snowing. At this point, it's about time to stop saying when and start saying if.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Uuuuh... The same here :unsure: hope, they also have 20° slopes to ride :blink:

OP, is there a town downstream of that "dam"? Hope, nobody's actually threatened by that lake. We had a avalanche winter some years ago over here where many towns in valleys were cut off from civilization, avys burying all connecting streets but none of these huge avys was as massive as the one you showed. Scary!
Earlier, the city of Valdez which is downstream on the Lowe River had a voluntary evacuation alert for the residential area known as Alpine. The water has slowly been receding and that evacuation order has been lifted. The Richardson highway serves as the only over land access to and from Valdez and the city has been cut off. Food and other supplies will have to be air lifted in or via ocean going vessels. The port is ice free so shipping is viable.

Alaska DOT thinks that they can get the road open in fairly short order but they cannot do anything right now because the avalanche danger remains so high. it is unsafe to put highway crews to work there. They only need to clear the roadway which can be done by hauling the debris off in trucks. The actual avalanche debris field is going to be there for some time with a "canyon cut through it for the road.

The forecast is not looking good for a return to winter up here. It was 58 degrees in the Anchorage area today and the hills around town are bare and brown. Alyeska is closed indefinitely due to lack of snow. I dont see this changing much in the next month or two and by that time, we will be close to entering our normal breakup season going into spring. This season is pretty much a bust.
 

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Earlier, the city of Valdez which is downstream on the Lowe River had a voluntary evacuation alert for the residential area known as Alpine. The water has slowly been receding and that evacuation order has been lifted. The Richardson highway serves as the only over land access to and from Valdez and the city has been cut off. Food and other supplies will have to be air lifted in or via ocean going vessels. The port is ice free so shipping is viable.

Alaska DOT thinks that they can get the road open in fairly short order but they cannot do anything right now because the avalanche danger remains so high. it is unsafe to put highway crews to work there. They only need to clear the roadway which can be done by hauling the debris off in trucks. The actual avalanche debris field is going to be there for some time with a "canyon cut through it for the road.

The forecast is not looking good for a return to winter up here. It was 58 degrees in the Anchorage area today and the hills around town are bare and brown. Alyeska is closed indefinitely due to lack of snow. I dont see this changing much in the next month or two and by that time, we will be close to entering our normal breakup season going into spring. This season is pretty much a bust.
Par for the course. I'm finally gonna get up to Alaska and it doesn't snow... in fucking Alaska. LOL! :laugh:
 

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Earlier, the city of Valdez which is downstream on the Lowe River had a voluntary evacuation alert for the residential area known as Alpine. The water has slowly been receding and that evacuation order has been lifted. The Richardson highway serves as the only over land access to and from Valdez and the city has been cut off. Food and other supplies will have to be air lifted in or via ocean going vessels. The port is ice free so shipping is viable.

Alaska DOT thinks that they can get the road open in fairly short order but they cannot do anything right now because the avalanche danger remains so high. it is unsafe to put highway crews to work there. They only need to clear the roadway which can be done by hauling the debris off in trucks. The actual avalanche debris field is going to be there for some time with a "canyon cut through it for the road.

The forecast is not looking good for a return to winter up here. It was 58 degrees in the Anchorage area today and the hills around town are bare and brown. Alyeska is closed indefinitely due to lack of snow. I dont see this changing much in the next month or two and by that time, we will be close to entering our normal breakup season going into spring. This season is pretty much a bust.
It's only about 40 right now here in Anchorage (which is still very hot for January) and we have some snow in the forecast for this weekend. Hopefully things turn around quickly.
 

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Well, fuck. If it doesn't snow, maybe I can go halibut fishing. I wonder when the spring brown bear season is? I know a guide up there. May have to reach out to him.
 
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