Some recreational Forest Service roads in Chalen County are now gated closed for the winter. 

They include Eightmile Road in the Icicle Drainage area south of Leavenworth as well as the Number 2 Canyon Road west of Wenatchee. 

Robin DeMario with the Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest says the closures are put in place to protect the roadways themselves. 

"Across the national forest, we have road closures going into effect to protect the road surfaces when it's wet, and muddy, and then once it turns to snow, because there's potential for a lot of damage to occur to some roads if vehicles attempted to drive over them in those conditions," said DeMario. 

The Beehive Road near Mission Ridge Ski Resort will also be gated closed when snow depth gets too deep for travel. 

Beehive Reservoir is a popular destination for Wenatchee Valley residents who use the lake as a recreation spot for fishing, etc. 

The gates for all three of the roads will reopen in the spring of 2023 once road surfaces melt out. 

DeMario says some forest roads are closed for safety reasons as well as wear and tear, including Eightmile Road. 

"We don't want to have any vehicles traveling up that road during wet, muddy, and then snowy conditions," DeMario said "Also, it's a steep road, and it could be somewhat treacherous during the winter." 

The closure of No. 2 Canyon Road took place a little early this year, as it typically closes on Dec. 1.

In addition, a goal of closing No. 2 Canyon Road is to manage the deer winter range to sustain healthy populations of mule deer and elk.  The closure prohibits use of the area for recreational purposes, including cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, hiking, mountain biking and snowmobiles to avoid distress to animals during the critical winter time period.

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