Why Colorado Tokers Love Alaskan Ice

Alaskan Ice actually hails from the Netherlands.
Alaskan Ice actually hails from the Netherlands.
Herbert Fuego

There’s no shortage of fun slang terms associated with cannabis, but telling your friend to “pass the herb” or “block the wind while I roast this bone” don’t always create the desired mood. Beer comes with a more party-appropriate vocabulary: Asking someone to throw you a coldie, a yella belly (Coors), a red belly (Budweiser), a super-cold, a brew dawg or a barley pop just sounds fun, especially when you’re sporting some homemade jorts. But not all of us want to pound yella bellies all day, so I decided to hunt up some strains with bro-tastic moniker potential.

I hoped that Alaskan Ice, a potent hybrid bred from Haze and White Widow genetics, could be my new super-cold. But this bud wasn’t for me.

Although it carries the same genetics in name as Moby Dick, a creative sativa with heavy citrus flavors, Alaskan Ice was bred from different phenotypes; it’s considered harder to grow than Moby Dick (which is difficult in its own right), and carries a more disorienting and relaxing high. However, both strains carry White Widow’s trademark trichome coverage. After creating the strain, Dutch breeder Green House Seeds undoubtedly noticed Alaskan Ice’s thick glaze of resin, but the earthy, minty smell pairs with a sweet-and-sour punch reminiscent of wintergreen gum. That menthol-like scent instantly cools down the nostrils, with a calming Haze zest bursting through at the end just before it starts to burn.

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Looking back on it, I was foolish not to expect a hard mind-fucking from a strain bred from Haze, a notoriously disorienting sativa, and White Widow, a nighttime strain known for its high THC content. Getting a drum of energy only to then crash and burn within thirty minutes wasn’t my kind of roller coaster, though, and I can imagine the high would be too confusing and heavy for those with low tolerances.

Looks: Alaskan Ice’s buds are large in almost every case, though they can be short and round or tall and slender, with compact yet light calyxes that feel inflated when you’re breaking them up. The strain’s forest- and yellow-green tones look brighter under a heavy sheath of trichomes, with rusted pistils and bright leaves throughout. If they’re dried too much, though, all that size and fluff crumbles quickly.

Smell: The strain’s pungent smell is complex enough to require a few sniffs to figure out. Sweet, sour notes of powdered candy swell in the nostrils until a cooling, minty rush takes over. Just before that menthol effect gets uncomfortable, a basil-like spice jumps in to end it.

Flavor: Sweet and sour may dominate the initial characteristics of Alaskan Ice’s smell, but those notes are hard to identify in the taste. Instead, my tongue largely picks up menthol flavors with grassy hints of soil, as well as a grainy Haze zest at the close.

Effects: Not my favorite high, but I could see how some tokers would like it in the evening or after a long day. Just don’t let the quick uplift or sativa designation trick you into thinking you’re ready to tackle something for more than fifteen minutes, because the high quickly turns into a lethargic, mindless bliss that’s much heavier on the body and pain than expected. Alaskan Ice has been used for mental anguish, minor pain, headaches, sleeping disorders and glaucoma.

Commercial grower’s take: “If it’s the real deal, then anticipate a strong high. If you don’t smoke a lot of weed, then it’s not going to matter: You’ll be high as shit, and then you’ll fall asleep. Alaskan Ice comes from the Netherlands, and its breeder retired it for a while, so it’s probably kind of hard to find right now. I hear it’s a little finicky in the grow, and you need to baby those plants, as they stretch five feet, but if you can pull a good yield, I’ll bet it’s amazing to blast [for hash].”

Is there a strain you’d like to see profiled? Email marijuana@westword.com.

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