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Contact: Barb Maynes, 360-565-3005
Several construction and repair projects along Olympic National Park roads will improve visitor access and safety. While work is ongoing, visitors and area residents should expect some delays and temporary closures.
“These road repair projects are needed to maintain safe access to the park,” said Olympic National Park Superintendent Karen Gustin. “We recognize that the timing of these projects may present an inconvenience to our visitors, but these projects can only be successfully completed during the warm, dry months of summer.”
Hoh Rain Forest
The paved roads within the park’s Hoh Rain Forest area will be resurfaced or ‘chipsealed’ this summer, including the six-mile section of the Upper Hoh Road within the park boundary, the visitor center parking area, campground loop roads and parking pads, parking pullouts, and administrative area roadways.
Weather permitting, the project is scheduled to begin on July 27 and is expected to take up to two weeks, with work only occurring on weekdays. Visitors should expect delays of up to 20 minutes along the Upper Hoh Road, along with temporary closures of parking areas and the campground to allow resurfacing to proceed.
The Hoh Rain Forest campground will be closed for up to 24 hours beginning at 11:00 a.m. on Monday, July 27 while crews resurface the campground roads and parking pads. The campground will close again for 24 hours at 11:00 a.m. on Monday, August 3 to allow crews to apply sealant to the new road surface. All campers must vacate during these two 24-hour closures. Timing of the closures is weather dependent, as the chipseal process requires conditions that are warm and dry. Any schedule changes will be communicated as early as possible.
Nearby campgrounds along the Upper Hoh Road include the Minnie Peterson and Willoughby Creek campgrounds, both operated by the Washington Department of Natural Resources. Another nearby option is the Bogachiel State Park located between the Upper Hoh Road and the city of Forks.
Quinault Graves Creek Road
The Graves Creek Road was severely damaged in several areas during a record-breaking storm in December 2007. Since April 2008, the road has been open for bicycles, stock and pedestrian use, but it will close to both bicycles and stock on July 20 to allow contractors to begin major road re-construction. Hikers interested in using the East Fork Quinault Trail are urged to finish their hike before July 20, or choose a different route after that date. Between July 20 and October 30, hikers will encounter heavy construction equipment and possible lengthy delays along the road and will need to exercise extreme caution in order to safely pass around the multiple construction zones. Construction-related closures and delays will continue through October, when the project is slated to be completed. The Graves Creek Road is scheduled to re-open for vehicle traffic on November 1, 2009.
For wilderness travel information, including alternatives to the East Fork Quinault Trail and current trail condition reports, people should check the park’s website or stop by or call the park’s Wilderness Information Center at 360-565-3100.
Lake Crescent – Highway 101
The 12.3-mile section of Highway 101 around Lake Crescent will be resurfaced this summer and is scheduled to be completed in approximately two weeks during August (specific dates are yet to be determined, pending selection of a project contractor.) Highway 101 will remain open throughout the work period, but traffic will be restricted to one lane through the work zone and delays of up to 20 minutes should be expected. Work will only occur on weekdays; no holiday or weekend work is permitted. The Lake Crescent resurfacing is part of a multi-park road maintenance project being managed by the Federal Highways Administration.