Forest Service to allow limited motorized travel on East Fork Road

The East Fork Road (Forest Service Road 667) between the East Fork Campground and Silver Falls Guard Station will be reopened to limited motorized travel today, Oct. 9.

Only lighter, narrower vehicles, such as ATVs and motorcycles, will be allowed to travel in the restricted area.

The road will remain closed to all motor vehicles wider than 50 inches, because the surface is not suitable for travel by full-sized vehicles, and a full-sized vehicle cannot safely get past a road failure in the Silver Falls vicinity. Trailers and campers must also be less than 50 inches in width.

The Pagosa Ranger District closed the East Fork Road in early May following a major landslide. Additional road damage occurred east of the slide area when a smaller slide caused a loss of 75 percent of the width of the roadway west of the Silver Falls Guard Station. The landslide area covers about 40 acres.

The road that once crossed the slide area has slid about 100 feet down the hillside. Xcel Energy has repaired the road alignment across the slide so that it is a flat, drivable surface. However, caution should be used when driving across the portion of the road within the landslide.

Motorized travel on this and all other forest roads is not allowed during wet conditions if it results in damage to road surfaces. Specifically, motorized vehicles are not allowed to create ruts deeper than 4 inches on native-surface roads and greater than 1 inch on graveled roads. This restriction protects the investment of taxpayers in maintenance of the Forest Service’s road system.

Visitors are reminded that most areas on the Pagosa Ranger District are closed to off-road motor vehicle use; all motorized vehicles must remain on open, designated routes.

For more information, contact the Pagosa Ranger District at 264-2268.