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Popular highway in Death Valley reopens after 2022 flooding

Updated February 22, 2023 - 7:22 am

Following last summer’s historic rainfall, day-to-day travels in and around Death Valley National Park are returning to normal.

Last Thursday afternoon, the National Park Service reopened North Highway.

The paved road had been closed since Aug. 5, 2022, due to extensive flood damage, according to a park news release.

Popular sites reopen

North Highway provides access to Mesquite Springs Campground and Ubehebe Crater, both of which are also now open again.

“A contractor replaced washed-away asphalt and road base, removed up to three feet of debris from the road surface, and filled in undercut shoulders,” park officials said. “Drivers should use caution until the end of February as road striping and other detail work will continue with delays possible.”

Additional tasks

Officials also cautioned that some northern park roads are still closed.

“Mud Canyon, Racetrack Road, and the two-way end of Titus Canyon Road are likely to open by late February,” according to the release. “Scotty’s Castle will remain closed through August 2024.”

Federal assistance

The project was funded by the Federal Highway Administration via the Emergency Relief for Federally Owned Roads (ERFO) program.

ERFO assists federal agencies with the repair or reconstruction of federally owned roads that are open to public travel, which are found to have suffered serious damage by a natural disaster over a wide area or by a catastrophic failure.

Pristine wilderness

Death Valley National Park is the homeland of the Timbisha Shoshone and preserves natural resources, cultural resources, exceptional wilderness, scenery, and learning experiences within the nation’s largest conserved desert landscape and some of the most extreme climate and topographic conditions on the planet.

Learn more at www.nps.gov/deva.

Contact reporter Selwyn Harris at sharris@pvtimes.com.

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