From: The Associated Press
Published March 23, 2009 11:18 AM

'Light Dusting' Of Ash As Alaska Volcano Erupts

Alaska's Mount Redoubt volcano has erupted four times since Sunday night, sending an ash plume more than 9 miles high into the air — but Anchorage, the state's largest city, has likely been spared from any ashfall.

"The ash cloud went to 50,000 feet, and it's currently drifting toward the north, northeast," said Janet Schaefer, a geologist with the Alaska Volcano Observatory.

The first eruption occurred at 10:38 p.m. Sunday night, and the fourth happened at 1:39 a.m. Monday, according to the observatory.


The current wind patterns are taking the ash cloud away from Anchorage and toward Willow and Talkeetna, two communities near Mount McKinley — North America's largest mountain — in Denali National Park.

Geophysicist John Power said no cities have yet reported any ash fall from the volcano, but he noted that it's still early.

Using radar and satellite technology, the National Weather Service predicted that ash would start falling later Monday morning.

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