By Esther Godson
Special to The SUN
The Pagosa Ranger District will be temporarily closing the following San Juan National Forest roads to wheeled motorized vehicles starting Dec. 2. All motorized trails on the Pagosa District close for the season Dec. 1.
Roads are closed seasonally to wheeled motorized vehicles to protect critical wildlife habitat and/or to prevent damage to road surfaces during freezing and thawing periods, even if snow levels are not very deep.
Visitors to the San Juan National Forest should be prepared to encounter closed gates on a number of forest roads across the Pagosa Ranger District starting Dec. 2, unless resource and safety considerations warrant an earlier closure.
See below for specific Forest Service road closure dates.
The following roads will close Dec. 2:
• Blue Creek, No. 012/Big Branch No. 664.
• Snowball, No. 646.
• Turkey Springs, No. 629 lower/middle gate.
• Eight Mile Mesa, No. 651.
• Kenney Flats, No. 006.
• Valle Seco, No. 653.
• Burns Canyon, No. 649 (second gate).
The following roads will close Dec. 16:
• Castle Creek, No. 660.
• Lefthand Canyon, No. 024.
• Fawn Gulch Road, No. 666.
• Trail Ridge, No. 639.
• West Fork, No. 648.
• Williams Creek, No. 640 (gate after boat ramp).
• Nipple Mountain, No. 665 (main gate at Mill Creek Junction).
• Devil Creek, No. 627.
The following roads will close Dec. 23:
• First Fork, No. 622.
• East Fork, No. 667.
• Fourmile, No. 645.
• Jackson Mountain, No. 037.
• Snow Ranch, No. 628.
• Turkey Creek, No. 647.
• Turkey Springs, No. 629 (main gate at Piedra).
• McManus, No. 633 (at Plumtaw intersection).
• Middle Fork, No. 636 (includes Toner).
• Plumtaw, No. 634.
• Burns Canyon, No. 649 (main/first gate).
• Jack’s Pasture, No. 746.
The following roads will close Jan. 6:
• Blanco River, No. 656.
• Devil Mountain, No. 626.
• Mosca, No. 631.
• Buckles Lake, No. 663.
• Price Lakes, No. 731.
Please 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. Stop in, call the office at 264-2268 or visit http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/sanjuan/alerts-notices/?cid=stelprdb5262330.
By Esther Godson