GTNP changes road closures north of Colter Bay

MOOSE, Wyo. — Eager Old Man Winter has done it again.

Winter weather in October plus “extenuating circumstances” have prompted Grand Teton National Park officials to reschedule highway closures at Arizona Creek, roughly five miles north of Colter Bay on Highway 89/191/287. Closures will now happen Monday, Oct. 21 and Tuesday, Oct. 22 — they were originally scheduled for Oct. 16 and 17.

GTNP is conducting maintenance work at Arizona Creek and construction crews are preparing to install new wing walls. Travelers will eventually face one lane of traffic with up to 15-minute delays in the area. These delays will occur both during the week and over the weekends as crews work to complete maintenance work before winter settles in.

The road will close for three hours at a time Oct. 21 and 22, from 9:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m. and again from 1:30 p.m.–4:30 p.m. One-way traffic access through the area will be allowed between these times.

Those wishing to access or depart Yellowstone National Park on these dates through Yellowstone’s South Gate may want to consider using the Yellowstone West Entrance to avoid the delay.

The work will address deferred maintenance in the park. The scope of work at Arizona Creek is to replace four failing concrete wing walls that channel water into the box culverts and protect the adjacent bank. Pre-cast wing walls will be installed by using a crane to move them and set them in place. One pre-cast wing wall weighs approximately 46,000 pounds and therefore requires a large crane to set the walls in place. The crane will take up both lanes of traffic once set up.

In addition, travelers should also expect delays along the Gros Ventre Road next week starting Monday. The final phase of emergency repairs related to the June 2017 washout of the Gros Ventre Road has begun and traffic has been reduced to one lane of travel. Traffic delays associated with the Gros Ventre Road repair project are limited to 15 minutes between 5 a.m. and 9 p.m. The holiday work is necessary as crews prepare to pave the road next week. Weekend work is also anticipated in the near future.

During this time of the year, visitation to the area winds down, services and facilities are closed, and there is much less traffic, making it the opportune time for this work to take place before winter arrives.

Updates will be communicated via roadside signs near Colter Bay and Flagg Ranch, park road information line at 307.739.3682, and the park’s Facebook and Twitter sites.

Roadwork schedules may change, or be delayed, due to weather conditions, equipment malfunction, or other extenuating circumstances.

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