Massive, unstable boulders block access to Cougar Hot Springs af - KPTV - FOX 12

Massive, unstable boulders block access to Cougar Hot Springs after landslide

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Photo: U.S. Forest Service Photo: U.S. Forest Service
Photo: U.S. Forest Service Photo: U.S. Forest Service

A landslide has left massive and unstable boulders blocking access to Cougar Hot Springs east of Eugene.

The landslide occurred on Forest Road 19, or Aufderheide Drive, on Dec. 21. 

The U.S. Forest Service reported Friday that engineers have taken the initial steps to address the situation. The deposit is 30 feet high and covers more than 250 linear feet of the road.

The area was described as “completely unsafe.”

Other ways to access the springs, also known as Terwilliger Hot Springs, are blocked by either snow or construction, leaving no safe way to reach the destination in the Willamette National Forest.

Engineers plan to have specialists loosen the material still perched above what has fallen onto the road and then remove approximately 8,000 cubic yards of rock from the road bed. That is about 800 dump trucks full of boulders and rock.

The road will be closed for the “foreseeable future,” according to the Forest Service.

This section of road has been subject to repeated landslides over the years and acting District Ranger Shane Kamrath warns visitors that, "The road has been closed for your safety, please respect that this landslide may continue to bring boulders, rocks and mud down on the road. We are actively working on the issue but for now, there is no way into the hot springs."

There are privately owned hot springs along Highway 126, as well as the smaller McCredie Hot Spring on Highway 58.

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