Alaska

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Obama Moves to Ban Drilling in Chunk of Alaska

Alaskan senators outraged by 'lawless' proposal

(Newser) - In a move that has the state's Republicans boiling with rage, President Obama has moved to seek protection for a vast wildlife habitat in Alaska. The president says he plans to ask Congress to preserve the "amazing wonder" of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge by declaring 12 million... More »

Why One Church Works Entirely by Phone

LDS members in rural Alaska prefer to call

(Newser) - Rural Alaskans who'd like to attend church without navigating miles of frozen road have found a workaround: the telephone. An Alaskan branch of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is devoted entirely to members who call in, the Alaska Dispatch News reports. "It's what you... More »

Ohio Blocks Renaming of Tallest US Mountain

They say McKinley, Alaska says Denali

(Newser) - Ohio is one of the flattest states in the US, but due to a quirky rule held by the federal board in charge of geographic names, the state effectively has control over the name of the country's highest mountain and is blocking efforts to change the name of the... More »

Oregon Man Falls 1K Feet to His Death

Dasan Marshall was climbing Mount Yukla in Alaska

(Newser) - Alaska State Troopers say an Oregon man died while climbing Mount Yukla. Troopers say Dasan Marshall of Portland, Oregon, was climbing with a friend yesterday when he fell about 1,000 feet. Because of the terrain in the Chugach Mountains about six miles from the Eagle River Nature Center, a... More »

Dad Accidentally Shoots Self, Kid at Physical Therapy

Corrections officer's gun went off as he was putting it in pocket

(Newser) - A father-daughter pair in Fairbanks left physical therapy a little worse for the wear after the dad's gun accidentally discharged as he was taking it out of a holster and putting it in a jacket pocket. The man, a corrections officer not being named by the News Miner , was... More »

Snowmobilers Save Moose in Avalanche

Three men in Alaska dig out stranded animal

(Newser) - Three snowmobilers near Anchorage, Alaska, came across a fresh landslide and tentatively approached to make sure no skiers had been trapped. Sure enough, they spotted something sticking out of the snow—something that turned out to be the snout of a buried moose, reports Alaska Dispatch News . The animal could... More »

How a Guy Lived for 3 Days in Sub-Zero Wilderness

Craig Johnson says he survived 'for my boys, my family'

(Newser) - A man says he spent three days fending off Alaska's brutal cold—and a slow, prowling wolverine—after his snowmobile broke through sea ice and sank beneath him, ABC News reports. On Dec. 15, Craig Johnson was on an 80-mile trip through wilderness to see his family when the... More »

Alaska Nuns Crack Case of Monks' Missing Boat

Eagle-eyed sisters help remote monastery near Kodiak solve what happened to skiff

(Newser) - What crime could there possibly be on a desolate, wooded island near Kodiak, Alaska, where a community of Orthodox Christian monks are holed up in a monastery? Boat-napping, according to Alaska State Troopers, who say that the Archangel, a 21-foot aluminum skiff used as the monks' primary means of transport... More »

Cops: Man Shot Alaska Prosecutor in Jealous Rage

Assistant DA was dating suspect's former partner

(Newser) - The shooting of a prosecutor in America's northernmost community appears to have been more connected to the victim's love life than his work, police say—although Assistant District Attorney Brian Sullivan had arraigned suspect Ronald Fischer on at least one of several domestic violence charges he faced this... More »

Prosecutor Shot Dead in Northernmost US City

Suspect held in Alaska killing

(Newser) - America's northernmost city has been stunned by the shooting death of an assistant district attorney. In what could be Alaska's first targeted killing of a state prosecutor in memory, Brian Sullivan, 48, was shot dead at a home in Barrow Monday night, and suspect Ronald Fischer, 47, is... More »

After 'Whoomp,' Skier Dies in Alaska

35-year-old perishes in sudden avalanche, companion digs his way out

(Newser) - A backcountry skier in the upper reaches of Alaska died after he was buried in a surprise avalanche in the Rainbow Mountains on Saturday evening, the Alaska Dispatch News reports. Eric Peterson, 35, and his friend, 63-year-old Michael Hopper, had been enjoying their late-afternoon ski when the two heard a... More »

Tiny Ice Age Babies Open 'Windows' to Ancient Alaska

Girls, possibly twins, buried 11.5K years ago in central Alaska

(Newser) - One summer 11,500 years ago, two baby girls, possibly twins, were buried in an Ice Age village in central Alaska—one about 5 weeks old and the other a fetus, possibly a stillborn. Today, the girls' remains are the oldest in the North American arctic, Smithsonian reports. Archaeologists recently... More »

Alaska Village to Get Rid of 'Honey Bucket System'

Many residents of Akiachak are forced to use a bucket as a bathroom

(Newser) - In the western Alaska village of Akiachak, roughly half the homes use the "honey bucket system," which isn't nearly as sweet as it sounds. These homes lack indoor plumbing, so residents are forced to use large buckets as toilets; the waste is then deposited into village receptacles,... More »

Audio: Bristol Says 'Old Lady' Started Drunk Brawl

Palin also reportedly says on tape that guy knocked her down, spewed obscenities

(Newser) - Sarah Palin has already offered an explanation for the reportedly booze-fueled brouhaha in Anchorage her family was involved in last month, but now there's apparently audiotape to supplement that account. TMZ has released what it says is a copy of Bristol, Willow, and Sarah Palin's complaints to police... More »

Alaska, Arizona Join Gay-Marriage States

Number reaches 31, and it's expected to go higher soon

(Newser) - Gay couples won the right to wed in Alaska and Arizona today, after separate court decisions ended bans in those states. That brings the number of states that currently allow gay marriage to 31, reports USA Today , though it could reach at least 35 soon . That's up from 19... More »

Maps of Alaska Are So Old It's Dangerous

Incorrect elevation data may contribute to plane crashes

(Newser) - The US has highly sophisticated maps of Afghanistan, and the government constantly updates its terrain data in the contiguous US. But up north, it's a very different story. "Mars is better mapped than the state of Alaska," says the head of one mapping company. And that is... More »

Nation's First Same-Sex Marriage Ban Struck Down

Alaska ban is latest to fall

(Newser) - A federal judge has struck down Alaska's first-in-the-nation ban on gay marriages. US District Judge Timothy Burgess—who heard arguments Friday afternoon and promised a quick decision—released his 25-page decision yesterday afternoon. "Refusing the rights and responsibilities afforded by legal marriage sends the public a government-sponsored message... More »

Cops Inform Wrong Parents Son Is Dead

They were kind of surprised when he answered the door

(Newser) - The parents of Justin Priest were in agony after learning their son had just been killed in a car crash, and they drove to the home of his longtime girlfriend to deliver the news in person. Thus, as Alaska Dispatch News explains, they were more than a little surprised when... More »

Woman Who Survived Plane Crash Killed in ATV Wreck

Melanie Coffee's baby died in last year's Cessna accident in Alaska

(Newser) - Troopers in St. Mary's, Alaska, say a 26-year-old woman was killed this week after she crashed her ATV into a tree while drunk, reports Alaska Public Media . But Melanie Coffee's death has another tragic twist, thanks to a different crash near St. Mary's less than a year... More »

Planes Rerouted to Prevent Walrus Stampede

FAA warns media, gawkers to stay away, not spook beached animals

(Newser) - Aircraft, media, and curious folks in general have been instructed to stay far away from the 35,000 walruses crammed onto an Alaskan beach to prevent the easily spooked animals from stampeding each other to death, the Guardian reports. "When they lose their sea ice habitat and come ashore... More »

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