As the Aug. 21 solar eclipse approaches and in anticipation of record visitation to public lands, the Ochoco National Forest and the Prineville District of the BLM are putting in place some temporary road closures or use restrictions that will promote public safety, resource protection and fire prevention.
On the Ochoco National Forest:
The Forest will close some short spur roads that access private property in order to prevent visitors from entering private ground and using it as they would the National Forest. The Forest will also close the spur roads that access fire lookout towers because the towers will be operational during eclipse visitation. People can still park and hike to the towers, but the roads that access them will remain closed to allow for ingress and egress of emergency traffic.
The Prineville District BLM is changing use on several roads in the district for public safety, resource protection and fire prevention. In the Sutton Mountain area, near Mitchell, Ore., the Meyers Canyon and Rocky Roads will be open to non-motorized use only due to extreme fire danger. The FAA Road, located 1.3 miles south of the Juniper Butte Trailhead in Cline Buttes near Eagle Crest, will also be limited to non-motorized use to help protect communication facilities at the top of the Butte. Finally, an unimproved road off of County Road 52 in the Little Canyon Mountain area near Canyon City, Ore. will be open to non-motorized use only due to road conditions.
The Forest Service and BLM appreciate public tolerance of these temporary measures to protect public lands and promote public safety during peak visitation for the total solar eclipse.