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Along with being in wet, then frozen, clothes and enduring subzero temperatures with a wind chill estimated at 35 below zero, Johnson was being stalked by a wolverine, which he tried to shoot but ultimately ended up keeping at bay by stabbing at it with a stick.
Jillian Rogers
Medics and police responded to the Spenard Motel in June and found Aaron Vanormer’s 2-month-old baby dead. Vanormer was not charged with any crime after an initial interview, but is now wanted on a $50,000 arrest warrant stemming from a manslaughter charge filed in Superior Court.
Jerzy Shedlock
A much-anticipated study on sulfolane pollution levels tends to back up the position taken by Flint Hills, concluding that a much higher level in the ground below North Pole should be considered safe than that proposed by the state.
Dermot Cole
Alaska State Troopers said a young girl and a woman received life-threatening injuries on Christmas afternoon after being struck while trying to jump start a stalled pickup beside the Sterling Highway near Ninilchik.
Alaska Dispatch News
A 6-year-old from the Southwest Alaska village of Akiachak died on Christmas Eve, three days after being struck by an ATV while he was lying down on a trail in the dark, Alaska State Troopers reported.
Jerzy Shedlock
It's been my habit to vent a bit in the last column of the year. I suspect this year's comments might be a bit more controversial than others. I hope not.GardeningJeff Lowenfels
Cottonwood Creek, a pretty waterway flowing through the heart of Wasilla, is paying the price for its urban setting. The creek is the first in the Valley to exceed state fecal bacteria standards linked to horses, dogs -- and, of course, people. Mat-SuZaz Hollander
After more than three decades as Barrow’s one and only Superior Court judge, Michael Jeffery is hanging up his robe.Crime & JusticeJerzy Shedlock
By the time New Year’s Eve comes rolling in, if you’re like me, you might be over the meatiness of the holidays. Just in time for New Year’s, some friends shared some of their beautiful fish from this summer’s catch.Food & DrinkKim Sunée

News & Politics

GOP leaders ask Walker for 'immediate action' on budget

Republican leaders in the Alaska Legislature are asking new Gov. Bill Walker to take “immediate action” to cut the state budget after falling oil prices led to a $3.5 billion budget gap.Nathaniel Herz

Have a news tip? Let us know at newstips@alaskadispatch.com

Sports

The UAA Cheerleaders performed during the Seawolves' 80-58 home victory over Portland Bible at the Alaska Airlines Center on Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014.

Culture

Jeff Lowenfels: Should a garden columnist give advice on growing cannabis?

It's been my habit to vent a bit in the last column of the year. I suspect this year's comments might be a bit more controversial than others. I hope not.Jeff Lowenfels

Arctic

Russian air activity near northern Norway no higher now than in other years

Despite heightened tensions and some well-publicized recent incidents, Russian incursions into airspace near Nordic countries are no more frequent now than in 2012 or 2013, Norwegian military officials say.Trude Pettersen, Barents Observer

Adventure

Now's the time to reserve a dream Alaska public-use cabin for midsummer

If you’re like me, you often visit the reservations sites too late to score a good cabin. It pays to plan and, luckily, with hundreds of cabins to choose across Alaska, there are still plenty available if you book now.  Alli Harvey

Nation/World

  • Long before revelations in the spring that the Veterans Affairs hospital in Phoenix had manipulated waiting lists to hide that veterans were facing long delays to see doctors, senior department officials in Washington had been made aware of serious problems at the hospital, according to filings before a federal administrative board.

  • A paleo-geologist sifts sand and coral deposits for clues to tsunami patterns in Aceh, the epicenter of the Dec 26, 2004 earthquake. Indonesians are marking the 10-year anniversary of the country's deadliest natural disaster.

We Alaskans

Denali dilemma: Can Dan Sullivan get Mount McKinley renamed?

Alaskans of any political persuasion can agree that we should get to name our own state’s highest mountain, currently misnamed Mount McKinley. And Sen.-elect Sullivan is uniquely positioned to do something about it.Rick Sinnott