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National Park Service (NPS) maintenance staff completed temporary repairs to the Chains road which opened late in the afternoon on Thursday July 24, 2014. Vehicles can now access the Chains area and the Hanging Garden trail head from sunrise to sunset. Although this is not a permanent fix, the temporary repairs will allow visitors to drive, rather than walk, to the Chains, a popular point of access to Lake Powell. Visitors are encouraged to use caution when driving to the Chains and recognize potential risks associated with weather events, flash-flooding, and potential road damage similar to those that closed the road last fall.
The Chains road was closed on September 11, 2013 when a surge of storm water rushed down a natural drainage which overwhelmed the dirt road and drainage system. After the monsoonal storm in the fall, there was approximately 8 feet of mud/debris across the road in several areas and 40 feet of road completely washed out of the ground. During this event, about 25 people were rescued and 15 vehicles had to be removed.
The National Park Service will endeavor to maintain the temporary repairs to the Chains road. However, flash-floods, wash-outs, and road damage could result in future road closures.