After a few years of less activity, it would seem the Ridge Route is getting some attention finally. A construction project is underway, approximately four miles north of Templin Highway, on a section of the road that was destroyed by pipeline construction. This section is now being restored by Plains All-American Pipeline under a Consent Decree that was enacted in 2010 by the US Environmental Protection Agency. The decree outlined repairs to a specific section of the road and called for concrete paving, if possible. In addition to the roadway repair, the decree also called for monitoring of the pipeline to ensure it does not break again. This monitoring has an indirect effect of monitoring the roadway, as they share a common right-of-way for many miles along the ridge. We are still trying to make contact with the involved parties to find out more on the project.
I also made a field visit to the Ridge Route to investigate the possibility of landslides at the southern Forest Service gate recently. I found two possible slides during this visit and conducted a brief geological study. My geologic report is available here. Future studies may be conducted along more of the road as time permits. If there are any geologists or geotechnical engineers that would like to donate their time to this project, please contact us.
The gates still remain closed, at least on weekends or when the construction project is on hold. As our rainy season is here, please do not travel the roadway during or after a major rainstorm. Doing so can damage the road and create more problems in the future. If you do traverse the roadway, again let us know what conditions you find.