Rocky begins removing hazard trees on Trail Ridge Road |

Rocky begins removing hazard trees on Trail Ridge Road

Temporary traffic control to take place

Crews began removing hazard trees from Trail Ridge Road on Monday. Work is expected to continue through Oct. 22.
Courtesy Rocky Mountain National Park

Visitors to Rocky Mountain National Park should plan for some traffic delays in the coming weeks as the park’s staff removes hazard trees along Trail Ridge Road.

Work to remove the trees began Monday. It is expected to continue through Oct. 22, as conditions allow. Work is only taking place from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday on Trail Ridge Road through Upper Hidden Valley.

Temporary traffic control will be implemented at Many Parks Curve during the operations. Delays of around 15 minutes in both directions should be expected.

According to Rocky, the tree removal is part of ongoing efforts to mitigate the damage to the forest done by bark beetles.

“The park’s priorities for mitigation of the effects of beetles are focused on removing hazard trees and hazard fuels related to the protection of life and property,” stated a news release.

While the bark beetle is native to the country’s forests, shifts in temperature and increased water stress have been favorable to the beetle’s growth, according to the US Forest Service.

In Rocky, the bark beetles have affected a large number of conifer trees. Over the past decade, tree mortality caused by bark beetles has increased in lodgepole pine, spruce and ponderosa forests.

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