By Jonina Vanderbilt
Special to The SUN
Visitors to the national forest should be prepared to encounter closed gates on a number of forest roads across the Pagosa Ranger District starting Dec. 3, unless resource and safety considerations warrant an earlier closure.
Even if snow levels are not very deep, many roads will be closed to prevent damage to road surfaces during freezing and thawing periods.
Travelers should always be prepared for winter conditions and travel with shovels, tire chains and appropriate safety equipment necessary for winter conditions.
The following Pagosa Ranger District roads will close on Dec. 3:
• Blue Creek, No. 012/Big Branch, No. 664.
• Snowball, No. 646.
• Echo Canyon, No. 029.
• Turkey Springs, No. 629, lower/middle gate.
• Eight Mile Mesa, No. 651.
• Kenney Flats, No. 006.
• Valle Seco Upper, No. 653, to private property.
• Burns Canyon, No. 649 (above second gate).
• First Fork, No. 622 (gate at Sheep Creek).
• West Monument, No. 630.
The following Pagosa Ranger District roads will close on Dec. 14:
• Castle Creek, No. 660 to Opal Lake Trailhead.
• Lefthand Canyon, No. 024.
• Fawn Gulch Road, No. 666.
• Trail Ridge, No. 639.
• West Fork, No. 648.
• Williams Creek, No. 640 and Poison Park (644).
• Nipple, No. 665, to Echo, No. 029.
• Devil Creek, No. 627, to State Wildlife Area.
The following Pagosa Ranger District roads will close on Dec. 21:
• First Fork, No. 622 (main gate).
• East Fork, No. 667.
• Fourmile Road, No. 645.
• Jackson Mountain, No. 037.
• Snow Ranch, No. 628.
• Turkey Creek, No. 647.
• Turkey Springs, No. 629, upper gate.
• McManus, No. 633 (at Plumtaw intersection).
• Middle Fork, No. 636, and Toner, No. 637.
• Plumtaw, No. 634.
• Burns Canyon, No. 649 (to second gate).
• Jack’s Pasture, No. 746.
The following Pagosa Ranger District roads will close on Jan. 4:
• Blanco River, No. 656.
• Devil Mountain, No. 626.
• Mosca, No. 631.
• Buckles Lake, No. 663.
• Price Lakes, No. 731.
Since some roads may need to be closed prior to their set dates, it is important for forest visitors to contact the Pagosa Ranger District to obtain the most up-to-date road information prior to heading out to the forest during the early winter season.
Please stop in, call the Pagosa office at 264-2268 or visit its website at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/sanjuan/alerts-notices/?cid=stelprdb5262330.
By Jonina Vanderbilt