Eldorado National Forest dirt roads closed early

by Placerville Newswire / Dec 12, 2016 / comments

Based on recent precipitation, the annual seasonal closure of native surface roads, also known as dirt roads, has gone into effect. Rainfall, soil moisture, road and trail conditions and weather forecasts are factors that trigger a seasonal closure earlier than Jan. 1. The roads will remain closed until at least April 1, 2017.

“My goal is to keep these roads open to the public as long as possible as winter approaches,” said Forest Supervisor Laurence Crabtree. “However, due to the recent storms, the soils are getting saturated to the point where they can’t hold any more water. Under these conditions these roads could be badly damaged.”

The seasonal closure is designed to protect roadbeds and watersheds from damage and to protect water quality. A minimum three month closure period from Jan. 1 through March 30 was designated for the core part of the winter in the Eldorado National Forest Travel Management Plan. To maintain flexibility, the timing of the dirt road closure is determined based on current conditions each year which may cause the closure to go into effect early or be extended.

Roads subject to seasonal closure are identified on a map that is free of charge and available at all Eldorado National Forest offices and on the web at fs.usda.gov/eldorado.

The seasonal closure does not affect routes in the Rock Creek Area of the Eldorado National Forest near Georgetown, which has its own route closure process.