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'Closed for the foreseeable future': 800 dump truck loads of rock block road

The landslide has piled rocks 30 feet high across a 250-foot stretch of road, according to the Forest Service. Geologists and engineers visited the slide on December 28. "Their plan is to have specialists loosen the material still perched above what has fallen onto the road and then, as soon as possible, remove the approximately 8,000 cubic yards of rock that are on the road bed," according to the Forest Service. (USDA Forest Service)

MCKENZIE BRIDGE, Ore. - A popular Oregon hot springs remains inaccessible for the foreseeable future thanks to a landslide that continues to drop boulders onto the nearest paved road.

Clearing the slide will require moving at least 800 dump truck loads of rock, the USDA Forest Service said.

The landslide December 21 blocked access to Terwilliger Hot Springs from Highway 126 via Road 19 along Cougar Reservoir. Search and rescue crews had to help people trapped at the springs get out.

The situation hasn't improved since then.

"Massive and unstable boulders and still falling rocks make the area completely unsafe," the Willamette National Forest said in a statement December 29. "Unfortunately, other ways to access to Terwilliger are blocked by either snow or construction; there is no safe way to reach the hot springs at this time."

The landslide has piled rocks 30 feet high across a 250-foot stretch of road, according to the Forest Service.

Geologists and engineers visited the slide on December 28.

"Their plan is to have specialists loosen the material still perched above what has fallen onto the road and then, as soon as possible, remove the approximately 8,000 cubic yards of rock that are on the road bed," according to the Forest Service.

"That equates to approximately 800 dump trucks full of boulders and rock," the Forest Service said. "The road will be closed for the foreseeable future."

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