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Contact: Barb Maynes, 360-565-3005
The Elwha Valley's Olympic Hot Springs Road will close at the Olympic National Park boundary for approximately one month beginning on Tuesday, September 8. The temporary closure will allow the park's maintenance crew to make necessary improvements to protect the road before the fall and winter rains arrive.
The road will be closed to all public access during the month-long project to protect both public and employee safety. Work will continue daily, including weekends, with heavy truck and equipment traffic occurring throughout the project.
"We appreciate the public's patience as we make these important repairs," said Olympic National Park Superintendent Sarah Creachbaum. "We understand that September is still a popular travel month, but it's critical that we stabilize the road before rains and river flows increase this autumn."
The Olympic Hot Springs Road was seriously damaged during last winter's heavy rains and floods. Interim repairs were made last spring, allowing continued access throughout the summer.
This September's project will complete flood repairs that were begun last February, immediately after the damage was incurred. With low water levels, crews will have access to portions of the river bank that were not accessible in winter and spring. Crews will place additional materials along the bank to provide erosion protection.Stabilization materials will include rock and gravel, along with logs, rootwads and willow stakes to improve and protect fish habitat while protecting the road.
The 4.5 mile Whiskey Bend Road is also scheduled for repair this fall.This road was extensively damaged last winter and has been closed to vehicles ever since. Dates for this project have not yet been set and will be released as soon as they are available.