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AK Beat: Bear kill closes 4-mile stretch of Crow Pass Trail

Craig MedredAlaska Dispatch

Bear kills moose, rangers close 4-mile swath of Crow Pass Trail: A bear kill has closed one of Southcentral Alaska's most popular hikes, on one of the busiest summer weekends of the year. Chugach State Park rangers said Saturday that a four-mile section of Crow Pass Trail about 5.5 miles beyond Eagle River Nature Center, from the Twin Falls to Icicle Creek campgrounds. The rest of the 26-mile walk from Girdwood to Eagle River is open; rangers didn't offer any guess on when it would reopen.  

IED-type device: A water bottle bomb brought Anchorage police to the neighborhood of Muldoon Friday night after a resident reported hearing an explosion, the Anchorage Daily News reported. Investigators found pieces of the bottle, bits of foil and evidence of a liquid chemical, and police spokesperson Jennifer Castro said it’s generally teens that learn how to make the bombs using Internet videos. But someone jumped the gun by tweeting that an "IED-type device" had exploded in a backyard, briefly elevating teen prank into potential warzone incident.

Whittier all-clear: Alaska Chadux Corp., a spill-response outfit in Anchorage hired by the owners of the Naknek Spirit, said Saturday afternoon that a ruptured tank leaking fuel into Prince William Sound had been secured, and the fuel had dissipated in the currents. The U.S. Coast Guard noted during response that it's been a rather busy few weeks in the waters off Alaska's coastlines. More on that tonight.

Grounded fishing boat leaking fuel into Prince William Sound: A grounded fishing boat leaking fuel in Passage Canal, six miles east of Whittier in Prince William Sound, was the focus of a U.S. Coast Guard mission that by mid-day Saturday involved an MH-60 Pavehawk helicopter and at least one hired vessel ferrying guardsmen and pollution response representatives from Anchorage-based Alaska Chadux Corp. The 104-foot Naknek Spirit ran aground early Saturday, according to a prepared statement from Sector Anchorage Command; five people were reportedly aboard when the starboard fuel tank -- carrying 2,000 gallons of fuel -- ruptured. The Naknek's crew was believed to have transferred 1,500 gallons of fuel safely to an intact tank, the Coast Guard reports, but there's an additional 10,000 gallons of diesel and 1,200 gallons of gasoline to be secured.

Helos for hydro: Alaska’s Department of Natural Resources will allow approximately 133 helicopter landings in the nation’s largest state park -- created to protect fish and wildlife breeding, subsistence and recreating -- so that a utility company can proceed with studies aimed at erecting a hydroelectric dam there. KDLG Public Radio in Dillingham reports that Nuvista Light & Electric Cooperative has the OK from DNR Division of Parks & Rec for a seven-day, limited helicopter permit near Chikuminuk Lake in Wood Tikchick State Park for mapping, surveying, studying in-stream flow near the Allen River (the proposed site of the dam) and to further research the lake’s fisheries and raptor population. The dam may or may not power construction of a nearby gold mine; it also is or isn't among the energy sources that will be necessary to electrify another mine that would ultimately consume as much power as an Anchorage-sized city of 300,000.