NEWFOUND GAP ROAD CLOSED DUE TO LANDSLIDE

NFG Landslide Jan 2013 2

Fortunately, we had no delays during our annual winter hike in the Smokies last weekend, but Newfound Gap is now officially closed per the Hiking The Smokies blog:

“A landslide along Newfound Gap Road near mile marker 22 has caused an extended closure of the road. Great Smoky Mountains National Park has closed Newfound Gap Road (U.S. 441) due to a landslide which undercut the road near mile marker 22 between Collins Creeks and Webb Overlook at 9:40 am. The slide is estimated to be a 200 foot section of road extending 1000 foot down slope, but the full extent of the damage is not yet known. The closure is expected to be in effect for an extended period of time.”

Normally it is snow that closes 441 but during this unusually warm January – it’s mud. That will make for a long drive around the Smokies but for the winter backpacker it should guarantee more solitude in the backcountry. Enjoy it while you can…

More photos from the National Park Service of the mudslide:

NFG Landslide Jan 2013 1

NFG Landslide Jan 2013 3

Map of the mudslide area on US 441:

Map of NFG Landslide Location


Comments

  1. BirdShooter says:

    Apparently the mudslide issue goes way beyond the Smokies….

    FOREST SERVICE ALERT

    Jan. 17, 2013

    Warning: Travel on Forest Service Roads Discouraged

    ASHEVILLE, N.C. – The U.S. Forest Service National Forests in North Carolina is encouraging drivers to stay off all Forest Service roads in the Pisgah and Nantahala National Forests until the storm passes.

    Heavy rain has produced mudslides in the two national forests. Travel conditions are also dangerous because of the potential for washed out roads and flooding, downed trees and other hazards.

    Road closures thus far include: Fires Creek, Tuni Gap and Tatham Gap roads on the Tusquitee Ranger District, Nantahala National Forest. Additional roads closures may be forthcoming today or tomorrow across the two national forests.

    In the Appalachian Ranger District, Pisgah National Forest: Twelve Mile Road in Haywood County is mostly blocked because of a mudslide; and Forest Service Road 288 is flooded. The two roads are not officially closed, but travel is discouraged.

    The safety of national forest visitors and employees is the top priority of the Forest Service.

    #

  2. BirdShooter says:

    The latest report is that US 441 will be out until June 2013 while repairs are made.

  3. BirdShooter says:

    US 441 is OPEN!

    CHEROKEE, N.C. — Newfound Gap Road in Great Smoky Mountains National Park reopened at 10 a.m. today (April 15th), only three months after a major landslide took out a 200-foot section of pavement six miles south of Newfound Gap.

    http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2013/apr/15/newfound-gap-road-in-smokies-opens-a-month-ahead/

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