Rock Slide Forces A 50-Mile Detour At Olympic National Park

A rockslide has forced temporary closure of Highway 101 near Lake Crescent in Olympic National Park. NPS photo.

A rock slide on Highway 101 near Lake Crescent in Olympic National Park is forcing visitors to take a roughly 50-mile detour while crews clean up the rubble and stablize the cliffside.

Parts of the cliff side gave way just before noon Wednesday as crews were working on a rock bolting and scaling project at Milepost 228, roughly 15 miles west of Port Angeles, park officials said. No one was seriously hurt in the slide, though it forced the park to close the highway through that area.

Officials say the road will remain closed until a geotechnical engineer from the Western Federal Lands Highway Division can inspect the matter and determine whether the cliffside is stable enough to continue the work and reopen the road. Until then, motorists are being told to detour around the area on state routes 112 and 113.

Temporary detour signs have been placed at the Highway 101-Highway 112 intersection at Laird’s Corner just west of Port Angeles and at the Highway 101-Highway 113 intersection at Sappho. Motorists traveling eastbound from Forks may drive as far as Barnes Point and Lake Crescent Lodge. Westbound traffic from the Port Angeles area may drive as far as East Beach Road.

Current road information is available by calling Olympic National Park’s information line at 360-565-3131.

Comments

Having driven that piece of road a number of times, I wonder how many times there's been rockslides there. It sure looks like one waiting to happen.