September 6, 2023 Update

September 06, 2023 Posted by: Katie Karnes

Blasting work will begin this week on the west side of the slide. For public safety, an expanded closure will be in place 1500 feet around the blasting work area at Pretty Rocks beginning on Thursday, September 7, and is expected to remain in place into late September. This closure will not affect the visitor area at the East Fork Bridge for the remainder of the season but will prohibit travel around the slide on the detour route using river gravel bars, making backcountry travel more challenging. If you plan to travel near this area, talk to a ranger at the Denali Visitor Center or Backcountry Information Center for more information.

Granite has been preparing for blasting on the west side by excavating the upper and lower benches on the west abutment rock cut. On the east side of the slide, they completed the north rock wall drilling and doweling down to the existing road grade last week.

The precast concrete foundation elements for the west abutment are being fabricated in Anchorage. Hauling material to and working on the Mile 44 temporary staging area also continues.

Looking down a steep slope to an excavator moving rocks. Below, the flat Plains of Murie at the base of the slope stretch out toward the mountains of the Alaska Range. Excavating a bench at the west rock cut in preparation for blasting.
Photo courtesy of FHWA

Last updated: September 7, 2023

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