The upper section of Larch Mountain Road beyond milepost 10 in rural East County remains closed due to heavy snowfalls this winter and spring. The section will likely remain closed until late June, said Mike Pullen, a Multnomah County spokesman.

Each winter, the county closes public access to recreation areas off upper Larch Mountain Road - which is the highest road in Multnomah County's jurisdiction, reaching an altitude of 4,055 feet - by installing a snow gate at milepost 10. Nobody lives beyond that point, Pullen said.

Once snow levels drop, typically in May or early June, the county opens the gate, allowing access to the upper section or road.

Pullen, who has worked for the county since 1998, said the latest opening for Larch Mountain Road was on July 1, 2008.

'The heavy snowfall in 2008 had the side effect of wearing out our snow removal equipment, which had to be repaired during the snow removal in June,' he said. 'So the late opening was due to both the heavy snow and the equipment repairs.

The earliest he can recall the gate opening is March 4, 2005.

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