26 January 2014

The Big Melt

From the Anchorage Daily News: A 50-mile stretch of the Richardson Highway outside Valdez will remain closed until at least Monday as crews charged with clearing avalanche debris work to bring down unstable snow in Thompson Pass.

Multiple avalanches early Friday morning blocked the highway, effectively cutting off Valdez by road. The slides measured several hundred feet long and between 30 and 40 feet deep, said Jeremy Woodrow, a state Department of Transportation spokesman.

From the Alaska Dispatch: The Richardson Highway near Valdez is not in good shape, to put it mildly. And that's the problem. Mild weather -- with snow, rain and freezing rain that have plagued Alaska for more than a week -- has brought down at least five avalanches between mile 12 and 64 of the Richardson Highway since Jan. 23. The road will remain closed until Monday, or possibly even Tuesday. 
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Race officials called off the Tustumena 200 sled dog race on the Kenai Peninsula on Friday.

The Anchorage Daily News reports (http://bit.ly/1cftNMp ) the run of mild weather and rain wiped out much of the snow in south-central Alaska. Earlier this week, the Northern Lights 300 at Big Lake was also cancelled.
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On a personal note, it's 41 degrees here at Casa del Pablo at 9:42 a.m. Not your typical January morning by any means. (The normal high for this date is 23° F.)

One other thing: Older Daughter, the Appleseed instructor finished her first AR-15 build last night. Price came in right at $500. Not bad at all.


Stephen said...

Excellent price for an AR build....please, tell her I said, 'Well Done.'

Cathy said...

Avalanches. Terrifying. I just cleared the end of our driveway of ice chunks the plow delivered. Couldn't believe the weight that snow can achieve.

PS. Now I gotta look up AR "build". But I'm assuming it's a good thing . . so congrats to your dear daughter :)

Keads said...

Congrats on the AR! I have to note that it has actually been colder here lately than there!

Rev. Paul said...

Thank you, my friend - she'll appreciate that.

Rev. Paul said...

Cathy, building an AR-15 or M-4 clone just means to assemble one from parts, rather than buying one off the rack at a gun shop.

Rev. Paul said...

Thanks, Kelly. And yeah, it's colder almost everywhere in the Lower 48 than it has been here. Dang it.

Well Seasoned Fool said...

Few things in nature terrify me, but avalanches do. Too many personal experiences with them in the Rockies and, once in Germany, helping the authorities dig out victims.

Rev. Paul said...

I don't blame you one bit - there's nothing you can do, if you're in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Earl said...

And what is the second AR build going to come in at? Just kidding, fine job for one with talent and a love of the AR. But do like to hear Appleseed instructor, that job pays the best, only a lay chaplain pays better.

Rev. Paul said...

Thanks, Earl. And the second one always runs higher. Bells & whistles, don'tcha know ... :)

Sandy said...

Rev. Paul,

Congrats and job well done on your daughters AR15 build.

I heard about these avalanches up there. They news is indicating possibly two weeks before the snow, ice, trees, and dirt are cleared from the roadway.

I'll trade you the 41 degree's for our 26 this afternoon.

Rev. Paul said...

Thanks, Sandy.

26 would be quite an improvement; if you figure out how to make it happen, we'd be grateful. :)