Inside North Fork Road to Reopen After Lengthy Rehabilitation Project
Contact: Amy Vanderbilt, 406-888-5838
Contact: Wade Muehlhof, 406-888-7895
WEST GLACIER, MONT. – Glacier National Park officials announce the opening of the Inside North Fork Road to all traffic as of mid-morning Friday, July 10. The Inside North Fork Road is the park’s oldest, built in 1901 when oil was struck near Kintla Lake. The Inside North Fork Road is a 28-mile narrow, bumpy, gravel road between Fish Creek and Polebridge, providing access to some of the park’s most pristine wilderness areas.
Most of the Inside North Fork road has been closed since a storm in November 2006 caused extensive damage. Two areas of the road were impacted by that storm. At the Anaconda Creek crossing, approximately 14 miles south of Polebridge, flood waters washed out a section of road. An ongoing project is underway to make permanent repairs there, but current repair work has made the road safe for vehicle use.
At the McGee Meadow Hill, approximately 2.7 miles from the Fish Creek entrance, saturated soils caused a major slough to cast-off one lane of road. Temporary fixes were completed in 2007 and 2008 to open as much of the road as possible while long-term repairs were made, which have just been completed.
Recreational, towed, and low clearance vehicles are strongly discouraged from traveling this road. In ideal conditions, about two hours are needed to travel the whole road. Visitors may encounter downed trees, and therefore should have a hand saw or ax with them. Drivers should also use caution on blind curves and watch for oncoming vehicle and bike traffic on the narrow winding road.
For current road conditions in Glacier National Park, please visit our website at http://home.nps.gov/applications/glac/roadstatus/roadstatus.cfm.
Did You Know?
Grizzly bears in the park have a wide variety of food sources, including glacier lily bulbs, insects, and berries. They may also make an early season meal of mountain goats that were swept down in avalanches over the winter.