The Number 2 Canyon Road Preservation Project is underway west of Wenatchee.
An unpaved section of the road that adjoins the Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest has experienced extensive washouts and rutting over time.
Chelan County spokesperson Jill FitzSimmons says the road is being repaired through a federal grant – The Federal Lands Access Program – because it connects directly to forest service roads.
“Those are only for, for an example, county roads that lead to federal lands,” said FitzSimmons. “So, that’s why we’re able to do this project, because that road is considered a gateway to public lands.”
The project will smooth out the ruts, re-establish an 18- to 20-foot roadway width and lay down gravel on the road surface.
FitzSimmons says there’ll also be improvement to drainage along the roadway.
“They’re going to add some cross culverts, some ditching to prevent these washouts, hopefully in the future” FitzSimmons. “And also, it’s going to have that new gravel surface. So, it should hold up better to storm water and snow melt runoff.”
The roughly half mile stretch of Number 2 Canyon Road, between milepost 4.35 and 4.97, is getting its extensive repairs over the next month.
The work area is closed to thru traffic and will only be open to locals. Recreationists should stay away from the area while the contractor is working. The project will take about 25 working days, which means it should be complete by the early part of November.
FirzSimmons says it’ll be OK for people to park outside the work zone and walk through the area on the weekends only, not during weekdays.
The Evergreen Mountain Bike Alliance is building an extensive group of trails in the area and is contributing $50,000 to the cost of the $450,000 project. The rest is being financed with the federal grant.
FitzSimmons stressed that the unpaved stretch of road being improved is in a remote section of Chelan County, is considered “primitive”, and won’t see much maintenance and no snowplow service moving forward.