Turn Off Ads?
Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: Alaskan Creates 15-story tower of Ice, Using His Sprinkler

  1. #1
    RZ Chamber of Commerce Unassisted's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    San Antonio
    Posts
    13,455

    Alaskan Creates 15-story tower of Ice, Using His Sprinkler



    http://www.adn.com/news/alaska/story...-6120333c.html

    For a guy who doesn't like winter, John Reeves sure has a funny way of showing it.

    How else do you explain the nearly 150-foot-tall, prehistoric-looking tower of ice Reeves has grown -- and continues
    to grow -- next to the Steese Highway eight miles north of Fairbanks?

    "I don't really care for winter; I guess that's why I do stuff like this," Reeves said. "You've got to act crazy to
    keep from going crazy."

    Mission accomplished.

    With nothing more than a well, a pump, some 1-inch copper pipe and a regular old Fairbanks winter, Reeves has created
    something that is absurdly Alaska.

    "It's unique on the planet," said Reeves, standing next to his masterpiece on a sunny Saturday. "It's not like
    anybody else has one of these things."

    Draped with thousands of icicles and several cauliflowers of ice protruding from its torso, the giant white
    stalagmite looks like something from the ice age. It was 141 feet tall Thursday and is still growing. It is about 70
    feet wide at the base, and it narrows as it rises.

    The "Fox Icescraper," as some are calling it, is taller than any building in Fairbanks, though that will change in a
    month or two when it begins to melt.

    Two weeks of bitterly cold weather during January may have stunted the tower's growth, said Doug Buchanan, president
    of the Alaskan Alpine Club.

    "We didn't go up it for a couple weeks when it was too cold," said Buchanan, who is the one who climbs the tower each
    week to extend the pipe and sprinkler head that has been spraying water 24 hours a day since mid-October, when
    temperatures were cold enough to turn water into ice. "The ice was just too brittle."

    The tower has developed into one of Fairbanks' top winter tourist attractions. The Alaskan Alpine Club's Web page,
    which features photos, background and updates on the giant spire, receives almost 150,000 hits a day, Buchanan said.

    Fairbanks residents, meanwhile, have been flocking to Fox to check out the tower, which sits about 100 feet off the
    highway and can be spotted a few miles away on Goldstream Road or the Steese Highway, a white thumb sticking up among
    the green spruce trees as drivers descend a hill into Fox.

    In a half-hour stretch Saturday, at least a dozen vehicles stopped on the side of the road to inspect and photograph
    the chalky-white tower. Several hopped out of their cars to snap photos.

    "It's a zoo out there sometimes," Reeves said, leaning against the hood of his blue pickup truck. "I've been out here
    and there's been 50 cars on the road. You see them drive out from town. They park, they take some pictures and then
    they head back to town."

    Karen Lundquist with the Fairbanks Convention and Visitors Bureau is one of the many locals who have made special
    trips out to Fox to monitor the growth of the tower.

    "It's pretty cool," Lundquist said. "It's real impressive."

    From her experience in the Alaska tourism industry, she isn't surprised at how popular the tower has become.

    "People get into anything that relates to cold and ice," Lundquist said.

    A man whose eccentricity and entrepreneurship match his size, the 6-foot-9-inch, 350-pound Reeves is always up to
    off-the-wall ventures that involve uniquely Alaska angles.

    "It's just John being John," is how Lundquist put it.

    So far, though, Reeves hasn't figured out a way to make any money on his ice tower. In fact, it's costing him
    $200-$300 a month in electricity to power the pump that supplies the water that feeds the tower.

    "It's well worth it just for the fun of it," Reeves said. "People really dig it. I'm getting a kick out of how many
    people enjoy it."

    Besides, he said, "We can grow it cheap around here."

    This is the second year Reeves has grown his ice monolith in Fox. The tallest last year's inaugural edition got was
    85 feet.

    "Last year, it was a wall; this year, it's a tower," Reeves said.

    Instead of using two three-quarter-inch pipes to pump water like he did last year, Reeves used one 1-inch pipe this
    year and a bigger sprinkler head with multiple taps. The result is "more water and more power," Reeves said.

    With a flow rate of 100 gallons a minute, Reeves figures he's pumping 6,000 gallons of water an hour into the tower.

    By the time he shuts off the pump in April, Reeves expects to have accumulated around 80,000 tons of ice, a statistic
    calculated based on the flow of water and the number of hours the water will run. Last year's ice wall had about
    45,000 tons of ice, Reeves calculated.

    The tower of ice is laced with chambers and tunnels and offers "high-quality ice climbing," Buchanan said.

    "It's the biggest thing north of Valdez that you can get to that's vertical," he said. "It beats anything in the
    Alaska Range."

    Buchanan maintains a Web site for the Alaskan Alpine Club (www.alaskanalpine club.org) that features a series of
    updated photos, a history and specifics about the tower.

    "It went from 500 hits a day to 190,000 hits a day in a matter of a week," Buchanan said. "Now it's averaging about
    140,000 hits a day."

    People from all over the world have written him e-mails regarding the ice tower, he said.

    It was Oct. 17 when Reeves turned the water on, and he figures it will be April before he shuts it off, because it
    begins to hasten the melting process.

    "I think we'll probably get six more weeks," Reeves said. "I hope we don't. I'd love to see it start warming up. I
    don't really like winter."

    Ice from last year's monolith lasted until July 9. It's anybody's guess whether ice from this year's larger edition
    will last through the summer.

    "It's a lot taller and there's a lot more ice," Reeves said. "It should last a lot longer."

    Next year, Reeves is hoping to construct a sort of ice park on the site with the tower featured as the centerpiece,
    along with sculptures carved by local artists using ice from ponds he has built. Reeves is also planning to erect a
    geodesic dome he purchased and dismantled in Valdez last summer that was part of one of the old Distant Early Warning
    line sites built in Alaska during the Cold War.

    "It's going to look like a big golf ball sitting next to the road," he said. "It's going to look like another planet
    when I'm done."

    Anybody who knows Reeves knows not to doubt him.
    /r/reds

  2. Turn Off Ads?
  3. #2
    Unsolicited Opinions traderumor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Right Down Broadway
    Posts
    18,689

    Re: Alaskan Creates 15-story tower of Ice, Using His Sprinkler

    For a guy who doesn't like winter, John Reeves sure has a funny way of showing it.

    How else do you explain the nearly 150-foot-tall, prehistoric-looking tower of ice Reeves has grown -- and continues
    to grow -- next to the Steese Highway eight miles north of Fairbanks?

    "I don't really care for winter;
    Dear Mr. Reeves,

    With all due respect to having a reasonable degree of intelligence, have you ever considered that Fairbanks, Alaska might not be the best place for one to reside that hates winter? In case you haven't noticed, it is winter more than anything else where you reside. Have you ever considered a move to a climate with seasons other than winter? Just a thought...
    Can't win with 'em

    Can't win without 'em

  4. #3
    Member ochre's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Posts
    4,266

    Re: Alaskan Creates 15-story tower of Ice, Using His Sprinkler

    Intelligence ruins perfectly good adventures
    from http://alaskanalpineclub.org/IceWall/04-05IceWall2.html
    January 29.

    There are some gems in the journals these guys are maintaining. I've laughed a few times already.
    4009



  5. #4
    For a Level Playing Field RedFanAlways1966's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Location
    Oakwood, OH
    Posts
    11,766

    Re: Alaskan Creates 15-story tower of Ice, Using His Sprinkler

    Impressive... but not as cool a roadside spectacle as the huge Jesus rising up next to I-75 near Lebanon, OH! I'll bet Jesus could crush that ice tower.... if he chose to do so.

    Makes me wonder if those who erected the I-75 Jesus would claim to be crazy like good ol' John Reeves?
    Small market fan... always hoping, but never expecting.

  6. #5
    Be the ball Roy Tucker's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Mason, OH
    Posts
    12,348

    Re: Alaskan Creates 15-story tower of Ice, Using His Sprinkler

    Quote Originally Posted by ochre
    from http://alaskanalpineclub.org/IceWall/04-05IceWall2.html
    January 29.

    There are some gems in the journals these guys are maintaining. I've laughed a few times already.
    That's a real hoot. The ongoing story of the crossbow and bolt is great.

    Judging from the author's writing style, I think the his tongue was firmly planted in cheek when he said "I don't like winter".

    Pay attention to the open sky

  7. #6
    CELEBRATION TIME RBA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Location
    San Marcos, CA
    Posts
    13,987

    Re: Alaskan Creates 15-story tower of Ice, Using His Sprinkler

    I was above the Artic Circle in Norway once. I visited a bar that had no indoor urinal. Outside was an Ice Tower twice the size of this one. jk

  8. #7
    Baseball card addict MrCinatit's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Piqua
    Posts
    4,429

    Re: Alaskan Creates 15-story tower of Ice, Using His Sprinkler

    "It is just John being John."

    funny thing is...i work with a guy with the exact same name.
    only problem is, our John would somehow find a way to get himself completely frozen in the structure.

  9. #8
    Be the ball Roy Tucker's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Mason, OH
    Posts
    12,348

    Re: Alaskan Creates 15-story tower of Ice, Using His Sprinkler

    Quote Originally Posted by BigRedHotPotato
    I was above the Artic Circle in Norway once. I visited a bar that had no indoor urinal. Outside was an Ice Tower twice the size of this one. jk
    Must have been Jim Coombs.

    Pay attention to the open sky

  10. #9
    Member TeamCasey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    TeamBoone's Attic
    Posts
    12,317

    Re: Alaskan Creates 15-story tower of Ice, Using His Sprinkler

    I was reading this last night. Pretty humorous. I bookmarked it so I can read from the beginning.
    "I've never understood the term "women and children" as if their lives are somewhat more important than men."


Turn Off Ads?

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Board Moderators may, at their discretion and judgment, delete and/or edit any messages that violate any of the following guidelines: 1. Explicit references to alleged illegal or unlawful acts. 2. Graphic sexual descriptions. 3. Racial or ethnic slurs. 4. Use of edgy language (including masked profanity). 5. Direct personal attacks, flames, fights, trolling, baiting, name-calling, general nuisance, excessive player criticism or anything along those lines. 6. Posting spam. 7. Each person may have only one user account. It is fine to be critical here - that's what this board is for. But let's not beat a subject or a player to death, please.

Thank you, and most importantly, enjoy yourselves!


RedsZone.com is a privately owned website and is not affiliated with the Cincinnati Reds or Major League Baseball


Contact us: Boss | GIK | BCubb2003 | dabvu2498 | Gallen5862 | LexRedsFan | Plus Plus | RedlegJake | redsfan1995 | The Operator | Tommyjohn25