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Park delays opening of Going-to-the-Sun Road

By Kevin Lessard, KCFW Reporter, klessard@kcfw.com
Published On: Jun 06 2014 04:54:39 PM MDT
Updated On: Jun 06 2014 09:50:06 PM MDT
KALISPELL, Mont. -

Snow is melting. At Glacier National Park, that means crews are beginning work on the Going-to-the-Sun Road.

Crews have begun clearing off snow. Some of the drifts have gotten up to 35 and 40 feet. While crews say they're making good progress so far, this year is proving to be a little bit more difficult than years past.

"On the lower end we're starting to get the cleanup done.  Rocks and debris need to be cleaned up out of the ditches along the cliffs.  And then up at this point in the Rim Rocks here we're working our way to the visitors center and we'll work our way to the big drift," said Stan Stahr.

Stahr is the road and auto shop supervisor for Glacier National Park. Work's been going well, but he understands it's not over.

"We've got a long ways to go even if we're close out to Logan Pass as far as time-wise, and there's just a lot of stuff to do," said Stahr.

The road crews don't work alone.

Avalanche specialists make sure crews are safe while clearing snow off the road.

"We work specifically with the road crews so there isn't a single job that is the most important.  We're all working together and we try to give the road crew the best information possible and make the safest decision of when to travel through those big avalanche paths," said Eric Knoff.

Along with clearing the road of snow, workers must replace over 400 sections of railings that are removed every year.

The job can be tough, but it's got to be done to open up the road.