Boulder Ranger District enacts safety road closure Aug. 18 to conduct emergency repairs

Starting at 9 a.m. on Friday, Aug. 18, the U.S. Forest Service’s Boulder Ranger District will close the Middle St. Vrain and Coney Flats roads [National Forest System Roads 114.1 (Middle St. Vrain), 507.1, 507.1A, 507.1B, 507.1C, and 507.1D (Coney Flats)] in the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests. The closure is due to health and safety concerns caused by wet and deteriorating conditions, and to make emergency road repairs. It is estimated that repair work may take up to two weeks to complete.

According to Forest Officials, the Middle St. Vrain Creek drainage received a heavy wet snow later than normal this past spring. As a result of this snow storm, as well as above average rainfall in August, a large mud hole developed approximately two miles west of Middle St. Vrain Trailhead on NFSR 114.1. Currently the mud hole is approximately 30 feet long, ten feet wide and three feet deep, and continues to increase in size and depth. The mud hole poses a safety hazard to National Forest visitors, local special use permittees, emergency personnel and government employees. Continued motorized traffic in the area would also increase damages to natural resources.

During the closure, the Forest Service, in a partnership with the Four Wheel Drive Club, Trailridge Runners will conduct emergency road repairs. The repairs will reduce the risk of motor vehicles getting stuck in the mud hole, and repair the extensive damage to the National Forest System road.

According to Nat Gillespie, Acting Boulder District Ranger, “Repair plans include work by U.S. Forest Service sawyers to cut down, limb and buck dead and down trees along the NFSR 114.1. Concurrently, permitted heavy equipment operations and vehicles will haul approximately 20-30 loads of gravel to fill the mud hole, from the Middle St. Vrain Trailhead using NFSR 114.1. NFSR 114.1 is a narrow, rough, high clearance road with many obstacles and very limited pull-out opportunities.”

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