Makes sense

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Posted by Ballpark Frank ( on 09:43:34 09/03/20

In Reply to: Just watchin' this crazy world go by posted by TravelingBear

Traveling Bear,

We knew about the water main break shortly after it happened, thanks to my scanner. We just didn't have the specifics. We were down south, eating lunch on a knoll out in Hayden Valley. We heard someone on the radio talking about trying to locate some road closure signs. It took a while longer to hear that the Mammoth-Norris road was closed, and that we would have to go the long way around to return to Bozeman.

I had not hear about the tanker mishap being caused by an RV pulling out in front of it, but it makes perfect sense. Even though I have not been to the scene, I know exactly where this happened, because my scanner has been way busy with traffic talking about Cascade IC, Cascade Command, individuals being "assigned" to the Cascade incident, etc. I frequent that specific area a lot, and I recognize the geography from the photos of the incident and aftermath. We park in the Cascade Picnic Area with some frequency, and I am well familiar with how hairy it can be if you are trying to make a left, and head north toward Mud Volcano, Hayden Valley, etc. The speed limit is 45 mph, and even in a sedan with a fairly powerful V6 engine, I find myself having to gun it to get out there safely. Something big and slow, like an RV, trying to exit that picnic area is an accident waiting to happen. The obvious potential fix, short of the exotic, like a major undertaking to straighten out the curve or whack a whole forest worth of trees that block vision, would be to either reduce the speed limit through there or prohibit left turns out of the picnic area. It will be interesting to see if the NPS makes any changes. We had been wondering what might have caused a tanker to have its trailer roll in that area, given there is not a sharp curve, but having to brake hard suddenly would sure explain it.

You are correct about the rash of road closures this summer. It has been bizarre! The construction on Dunraven Pass has been so impactful in the how and what they are doing, that there was no way the NPS could have opened the pass temporarily in the face of the water main break, so for a while, the north end of the park was totally cut off from the rest of the park.

One other piece of craziness has been the ongoing mess on the East Entrance Road by Pelican Creek. We have had endless surprises due to the construction crew summarily implementing all sorts of projects without anyone giving notice. Pullouts and side roads get opened or closed WHENEVER, for WHATEVER. To their credit, they have been doing quality work and moving rapidly. I guess the sudden unannounced complications are a product of turning a contractor loose, without hamstringing them with "Mother may I" sorts of regulation.


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