Glacier Valley Gazetta
A Glimpse into the Past
By Marc Donadieu
Glacier City Gazette
The pages of Glacier Valley Gazetta are a fascinating look into Girdwood and the Turnagain Arm region 52 years ago.
On page 2 of Vol. 1, No. 4, Aug.-Sept. 1967 issue is an editorial likely written by Editor Hugh Cruikshank Jr.
The Department of Strange Highways (Part Two)
Closer to home, we can find another brilliant piece of highway planning at the base of an avalanche slope just west of Girdwood’s Glacier Valley. Here, the reconstructed part of the highway has been widened, into the very base of an avalanche path. This of course, will now serve to ensure that next winter’s avalanche, rather than plummeting into the ditch and then flowing over the road, will drop directly onto it–and, likely enough on top of whichever unfortunate, unwary motorist happens to be driving by.
A brilliant design? This one is a killer. It’s amazing enough that in all the years the Seward Highway has been open that only one fatality has been recorded (and none since the opening of Mt. Alyeska increased winter traffic a hundred-fold). But now we have a State agency, which has always been notably indifferent to the very real, very dangerous hazards of snow and mud avalanches, coming up with a design that virtually ensures that someone, some day, will become a traffic fatality, killed by an avalanche.