Credit: Gifford Pinchot National Forest
As of Wednesday, August 8, 2018
Due to a deteriorating road bed and an active slide on Forest Road 90, the Gifford Pinchot National Forest has closed four miles of Forest Road 90 between Forest Road 90-3211 and Crab Creek.
The poor road condition, coupled with overwhelming traffic to recreation sites along the Upper Lewis River, has created unsafe conditions for forest visitors. Until a temporary fix can be made to the road, traffic will not be able to travel to Lower Falls Recreation Area and other sites along the Upper Lewis River from the west and must detour through Trout Lake.
The hillside along and under Forest Road 90 at Crab Creek has been slowly sliding over the last several years. This condition has created a deep slump in the road as well as large potholes, in which many passenger cars have gotten stuck over the last few weeks. The situation escalated recently as multiple vehicles, both parked and disabled, blocked the roadway and prevented ambulances from responding to emergency situations along Forest Road 90.
Road engineers are assessing the road damage and unstable geology of the area to come up with a short-term and long-term fix for this section of Forest Road 90. A short-term, temporary fix will likely be completed in August. The timeline for a long-term fix is unknown.
Vehicles will be able to travel on Forest Road 90 to Curly Creek Rd from the west. Travel to Quartz Creek, Lower Falls, Upper Falls, Lewis River Horse Camp, and other sites will need to travel through Trout Lake to Forest Road 23 and west on Forest Road 90.
Due to overcrowding at Lower Falls, recreationists are encouraged to visit other sites on the Gifford Pinchot National Forest.
Additionally, to ensure emergency vehicle access and visitor safety, parking along Forest Road 90 is prohibited for two miles on either side of Lower Falls Recreation Area. This area includes west of Lower Falls where the pavement ends and east past Middle Falls Trailhead.
Visitors are reminded that blocking or restricting the use of roadways is prohibited on all national forest roads. Doing so may result in fines or towing of your vehicle. This restriction is likely to last beyond the temporary road closure.