Avalanche Traps Alaska Town Behind 40-foot Wall of Snow; Alaskans Shrug

There's no telling when the road to Valdez will re-open.

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Alaska is currently in the middle of a record heatwave, but residents of outdoor mecca Valdez might have bigger worries than interrupted shredding: A massive avalanche has spilled into 1,500 feet of the Richardson Highway, blocking the only road into town and sealing the community of 4,000 behind both a 40-foot wall of snow and ice and a giant lake created by the dammed Lowe River. See the aerial footage here:


Heavy rains are loosing avalanches across the state, with some subdivisions completely cut off from land travel. A crew of bulldozers, excavators, and dump trucks are picking away at smaller blockages, but they can’t free Valdez until the impromptu moat drains away.

It all sounds pretty apocalyptic to us Lower 48 weaklings, but are Alaskans beyond the wall worried? Not really:

Alaskans: Not only do they laugh at icy death, they make a contest out of it. It ain’t called The Last Frontier for nothing.

Read more: Anchorage Daily News