Friday, June 24, 2011
Plan ahead for summer trips to the North Fork Ranger District
In 2010, the
awarded many construction and maintenance contracts funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). Much of the contracted work is still underway on the North Fork Ranger District. The projects involve bridge repair and maintenance, road resurfacing, culvert replacements and recreation site improvements. Short traffic delays, detours and road closures can be expected, but once the work is completed, access to recreational destinations will be safer and more enjoyable to forest visitors. The improvements will also help to lessen impacts on the environment. Clearwater National Forest
“ARRA has provided a once-in-a-career opportunity for making this many improvements to our forest’s roads and recreation sites,” explained Heather Berg, Acting District Ranger. “I’m thankful for the investment and employment prospects (the program) has created, but all of this work occurring at the same time is going to be tough.”
Below is a summary of work that will take place on the North Fork District during the summer and fall of 2011. All dates are estimates and may be subject to change. Please contact the
for updates and progress reports. Clearwater National Forest
Road 247, between Aquarius Campground and Bungalow
Larson Creek Culvert, milepost 37, will be replaced with a bridge. Work will start Aug. 29 and continue through early October.
The project will close Road 247 to through traffic. Visitors who are destined for the Washington Creek, Noe Creek, Kelly Creek and Hidden Creek Campgrounds and all points east will have to access the area via Road 250 from Pierce, ID or by way of Hoodoo Pass from Superior, MT;
Pavement rehabilitation will take place on the paved section of Road 247 starting June 20 and extending one month, through July 20. One lane will be open, but short delays are likely.
The entrance to the Aquarius Campground, near mile marker 25, is being realigned. The project started in early June and should last approximately six weeks. One lane is open to traffic, but motorist may experience brief delays. The campground and
will remain open for camping and day use. Purple Beach
Road 250, between Bungalow and
Fourth of July Pack Bridge, near milepost 8, will be reconstructed beginning July 12. The project is expected to last through Aug. 15. The work will close the bridge to all pedestrian, stock and motorcycle traffic.
Rosebud Culverts, between mileposts 5 and 9, will be replaced in July. The work will force the closure of Road 250 to through traffic.
Forest visitors will be unable to access from Pierce during this time. Motorists are encouraged to use Road 669, the Shanghai Road, as a detour; however, trailers and commercial traffic should consider alternate routes. French Mountain Pass
Road 255 from Kelly Forks to Deception Gulch
Goat Creek Culverts, near milepost .5, will be replaced beginning July 18. The project will last until August 12. The work will close the road to through traffic. Vehicle access to the trailhead for Trails 95 and 96, routes that lead into the Mallard-Larkins Pioneer Area, will be affected
Road 737, Laundry Ridge
China Creek Culvert, near milepost 1.5, will be replaced June 27. The work will continue through July 15. The project will close the road to all through traffic.
Recreation site enhancements
These projects will consist of fire ring replacement, hitching post construction, the removal of outdated toilets and the placement of gravel pads beneath picnic tables at various recreation sites scattered throughout the North Fork Ranger District.
These sites include the Aquarius, Washington Creek, Noe Creek, Hidden Creek and Cedars Campgrounds; Flat Camp; Smith Ridge Trailhead; Isabella Point Trailhead and
Trailhead. New vault toilets will be installed at the Smith Ridge and Isabella Point Trailheads. Work will start sometime in June and continue through Labor Day. All sites will remain open for public use, but individual camp units or parking areas may be off limits during construction work. Kelly Creek
The decommissioning of approximately nine miles of non-system roads in the Coyote Creek area, near Birch Ridge, west of Cedars Campground is scheduled to start in mid-July. The roads are inaccessible to vehicles.
The employee housing and water system at the
are currently being replaced. The work should not affect visitor access to popular recreation areas in the Kelly Forks vicinity. Kelly Forks Work Center
“This is going to be a challenging summer to get around on the
North Fork, for the public as well as the Forest Service,” Berg said. “I would hate for someone to drive a long distance to find their way blocked by one of these projects. I want to get the word out now, and I encourage folks to plan ahead. Be sure to call Forest offices for current information.”
For more information or travel updates, contact Travis Mechling, District Engineer, at (208)476-8210 or the Clearwater National Forest Information Desk, (208)476-8267.
Posted by ClearTrib at 4:33 PM