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North Fork Skykomish Road Repairs Continue to be Delayed (WA)

Posted: 03/19/2015
by Thomas O'Keefe

As another spring boating season approaches many of our members have inquired about the current status of the Index-Galena road that provides access to the North Fork Skykomish River, a spectacular reach of whitewater that has been a favorite of paddlers in Washington State for decades.

In November 2006 a major flood washed out the Index-Galena Road between milepost 6.4 and 6.9. The result is access to the North Fork Skykomish, now requires a 40 mile detour up the Beckler Drainage and over Jack's Pass, a route that is often closed by snow during the winter whitewater boating season.

Currently the draft Environmental Assessment prepared by Snohomish County awaits review by the Washington Department of Transportation, a necessary step before a public comment period on this environmental review can commence. The Federal Highway Administration however has expressed concerns regarding project cost and a perception that there is a lack of stakeholder interest in repairing the road.

Until FHWA makes a clear commitment to the project, WSDOT and FHWA are likely to delay the necessary environmental review and the project will remain stalled out. We believe it is important for FHWA to hear directly from stakeholders regarding the importance of this road for access to the North Fork Skykomish.

Help us get this project back on track and make your voice heard by writing to FHWA and WSDOT. We encourage members to also reach out to members of the Congressional delegation to ask for their assistance in asking FHWA to prioritize this project.

Jeffrey Paniati, FHWA Executive Director
Southeast Federal Center Building
1200 New Jersey Ave. S.E.
Washington, DC 20590-9898

Lynn Peterson, WSDOT Secretary of Transportation
P.O. Box 47300
Olympia, WA 98501-1284

Dan Mathis, FHWA Division Administrator
711 South Capital Way #501
Olympia, WA 98501-1284

Please send us a copy of your letter too.


Thomas O'Keefe
3537 NE 87th St.
Seattle, WA 98115
Phone: 425-417-9012


Associated Rivers

Skykomish, N. Fork WA

Associated Projects

Skykomish Stewardship (WA)
AW is actively engaged in the conservation of the Skykomish River and its tributaries and advocacy for public access.