Crews are still working to remove a rock slide that in December closed off access to a popular hot springs in the Willamette National Forest east of Eugene. The first phase for reopening Forest Service Road 19 (Aufderheide Drive) is complete.
Phase two involves the clearing rock debris from the road to Terwilliger, also known as Cougar Hot Springs. The Forest Service is working with the US Army Corps of Engineers to determine the best option.
Chiara Cipriano is with the Willamette National Forest.
"There's a fisheries consultation process happening to determine if the rocks can be put into the Cougar Reservoir or if they will need to be hauled away.”
Dumping the rocks into the reservoir will take 30 days, while hauling the rocks away will take 90 days.
It’s now possible to reach the Terwilliger Hot Springs using Forest Service Road 58 but the route takes at least twice as long. Cipriano advises checking road conditions before using alternative routes to reach the hot springs.