Lingering snowpack delays opening of some Forest roads
by Bridger-Teton National Forest
April 30, 2013
The Bridger-Teton National Forest begins opening Forest roads to wheeled motor vehicle travel May 1, however due to lingering snow, some roads are still impassable.
The status of roads on the Jackson Ranger District for those planning to venture out on May 1 is the following:
• Gros Ventre road – lower gate opens at approximately 6:00 a.m.; road open to Slate Creek; upper road closed to motorized vehicles until June 1; non-motorized use is allowed
• Flat Creek road – the gate on the National Elk Refuge opens at 8:00 a.m. and people will be able to drive to the Forest trailhead; road closed past trailhead
• Curtis Canyon road – the gate on the National elk Refuge opens at 8:00 a.m. and people will be able to drive up Curtis to the campground/overlook area; upper part of road closed due to snow
• Shadow Mountain north and south roads – closed due to snow
• Ditch Creek road – closed due to snow
• Fall Creek road – open
• Granite Creek road – closed due to snow
• Mosquito Creek road – closed until June 1
• North Fork Fall Creek – closed due to snow
Visitors to the Bridger-Teton National Forest can obtain free copies of motor vehicle use map by visiting http://www.fs.usda.gov/main/btnf/maps-pubs. No wheeled motor vehicle travel is permitted off of designated roads. The higher elevation roads take a long time to dry out after the winter. Even at lower elevations, pockets of wet areas can keep an entire road closed.
The Bridger-Teton endeavors to open some lower elevation roads by Memorial Day weekend – but some years the wet conditions prevent that from happening. When roads are wet, vehicle travel can cause considerable resource damage by creating deep ruts. Road widening can also occur when vehicles drive around deep pools of water. The chances of getting stuck are higher earlier in the season.
By June many Bridger-Teton National Forest roads begin to open, but some remain closed until July and sometimes longer for many reasons. Once roads open remember to not attempt routes above your skill level and be prepared in case you get stuck. Be aware of damage driving on wet roads can cause, including deep ruts and unauthorized routes. Changes in weather can result in impassable conditions even when roads are open. To learn if a road is open or closed please call the Bridger-Teton National Forest at 307-739-5500 or visit http://www.fs.usda.gov/recmain/btnf/recreation for the latest in trail, road and campground conditions.