Bend Bulletin - Driving access to Three Creek Lake, Tumalo Falls to close for the winter

November 4, 2022
Bend Bulletin - Driving access to Three Creek Lake, Tumalo Falls to close for the winter

Recent snowfall has prompted the Deschutes National Forest to close the roads to Tumalo Falls and Three Creek Lake. Gates along both roads will be locked at 8 a.m. Monday , according to a news release from the Forest Service.

The roads are closed to provide for public safety and minimize damage.

Forest managers advise visitors that Forest Service roads across the Deschutes National Forest are not plowed or maintained for winter driving access. In other areas that are accessible, drivers should be prepared for winter driving conditions. While the roads are blocked to vehicle access, they are still accessible on foot and by snowmobile.

The road closures on Monday include:

• Forest Road 16, which provides driving access to Three Creek Lake. This road is closed just after the Upper Three Creek Sno-park.

• Forest Road 4603, which offers access to Tumalo Falls.

The Forest Service recommends planning ahead when driving to accessible areas. It offers the following tips:

• Depart with a full tank of gas and be prepared for changing weather conditions. Let someone know where you are going.

• Do not rely solely on technology — GPS devices can steer drivers to impassable roads, cellphone service can be inconsistent and batteries can die. Bring paper maps as a backup, and a compass. Portable battery units are also handy to keep devices charged.

• Things to pack on a driving tour in the forest include: warm clothes, enough food and water for everyone for three days, tire chains, shovel, flashlight, flares, camp saw and cold weather sleeping blankets.

-Michael Kohn

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