by Phillip Manning ~ October 25th, 2013
A major landslide has blocked the Park Road inside Denali National Park. According to Park spokeswoman Kris Fister, the landslide occurred near Mile 37 of the Park Road. 30,000 cubic yards of rocks and debris fell from 500 feet above the road, and have piled as deep as thirty-five feet in some places.
Kris Fister says that the cause of the landslide is unknown. The area has not experienced significant recent rainfall, and there have been no reports of recent earthquakes in the area. Fister says the timeline for cleanup is in the works, and that crews will be working seven days a week to clear as much debris as possible before winter weather sets in. The first goal will be to clear a path for the plow trucks to clear the road next spring.
Fister says this year’s mild fall was fortunate, since normally Park Service vehicles do not drive that far down the road in late October. She says the landslide was discovered by two road supervisors who were taking advantage of the favorable weather to look at locations for a future road project.
In the off-season, the Park Road is closed to vehicles past Mile 30, but bicycles and pedestrians are allowed to go further into the Park. The Park Service is advising anyone who plans on going past Mile 30 to stay clear of the work zone.