PENDLETON — Contractors are preparing to chip seal about 33 miles of the Blue Mountain Scenic Byway on the North Fork John Day Ranger District between Ukiah and the boundary between the Umatilla and Wallowa-Whitman national forests.

Work is scheduled to begin soon, and last about four weeks. The project will result in delays, with flaggers and pilot cars. Signs will posted at each end of the work zone.

Money for the chip seal project is part of a $285 million investment on national forests through the National Parks and Public Land Legacy Restoration Fund, established in 2020 by the Great American Outdoors Act.

Blue Mountain, Hells Canyon byways open

Both the Blue Mountain and the Hells Canyon Scenic Byways are fully open after sections were blocked by lingering snow during the cooler than usual spring.

A section of the Elkhorn Drive byway, however, remains closed due to snowdrifts, from near Anthony Lakes to around the lower Crawfish Lake trailhead.

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