Steep slopes, flakes behind wheel make Morgan Lake Road dangerous year round

January 20, 2012 08:53 pm
I value my readers and would never intentionally cause them distress of any kind.

Sometimes a word of explanation is helpful in overcoming misconceptions that come from reading my words.

Let’s revisit the Morgan Lake Road column of Monday, Jan. 16.

It has been misinterpreted that all accidents on that road have been caused by speeding drivers or deer in the road.

These were simply examples of the possible dangers that are faced every day by travelers on Morgan Lake Road.

There are obviously other factors of weather and road conditions that can affect the driving ability and control of any vehicle with the most cautious and best drivers behind the wheel. I wasn’t referring to them.

Travel up and down that road has always been of concern because of its narrowness, blind curves, hilly accesses reduced by canyon walls, icy places unlit by sunlight, downed tree limbs, and other unforeseen road conditions that demand sudden stopping.

With the widening of the road where it could be done and the advantages deliberately provided for greater public use of the Morgan Lake area, more and more people from town have been drawn to take advantage of the rural area’s closeness.

This means the addition of all kinds of vehicular travel, besides those who reside there year-round, with a mixture of racing bicyclists, hikers, those out for a stroll with children and dogs, delivery trucks, moving vans, construction rigs and a possible horseback rider.

Anyone who goes up, must come down.

Most drivers are careful and considerate, but bad accidents can happen to them as well as the speeders and those who use the center of the road as their own.

I disagree that my column pointing out the dangers of this particular road will draw more to its slopes in order to enjoy joyrides there. That has already happened in the past with beer-keggers and young people out to see what their vehicles can do.

Fortunately, most of that has been cleaned up by vigilance. Increased use of the area is bound to get worse the more the area is developed and the public encouraged to take advantage of it.

There are already speeders and animals (including cougars and other wild animals) on that road. There are also weather conditions, steep slopes and narrow passages.

I merely pointed out the dangers to all the people who traverse this way, careful or careless, law abiding or not, resident or visitor.

That roadway is dangerous.

Do our citizens and county and city officials need to be aware of it?

You bet they do!

And, if I offended any safe driver on the Morgan Lake Road, my sincere apologies.

There is a saying: “If the shoe fits, wear it. If it doesn’t, ignore it.”

That’s my recommendation.


What was that white stuff that came down out of the sky, 7 inches on my porch railing, more elsewhere?

God gave us snow.  He also gave us John Sprenger, his small snow blower, and the will to be a blessing to his F Avenue neighborhood and beyond.

Veteran newspaperwoman Dorothy Swart Fleshman is a La Grande native. Reach her at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it