UPDATE: The construction project has been postponed until 2020. Ecola State Park Road, and visitor access to Indian Beach day-use area, will be open this fall.
A 1.5-mile segment of Ecola State Park Road in Ecola State Park will close as early as Sep. 23 for approximately 10 weeks for a bridge construction project over Canyon Creek. Park visitors will not be able to put the road to access Indian Beach Day-use Area for the duration of the project. There is no other road access to the day-use are and beach. Road access to Ecola Point Day-use Area will remain open during the project, however visitors may experience temporary road closures as the project begins and construction equipment is moved into place.
Hikers can still access Indian Beach from the north via the Tillamook Head Trail during the closure. Trail access from the south is closed, due to a wash out in spring 2017 that is still being repaired.
The construction work will remove a temporary culvert and build a new bridge to span Canyon Creek. The entire creek drainage was severely damaged during 2015 floods, which caused the road to fail and prevented access to Indian Beach Day-use Area. A temporary culvert was installed until a permanent solution was determined.
Canyon Creek is a designated fish-bearing stream. A bridge is the best option for fish passage, as well as a better long-term repair to withstand future flooding. Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) has approved the new bridge plans.
The costs to build the bridge are eligible for a 75 percent Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) reimbursement because the flooding was declared a disaster. Final construction costs are undetermined at this time – project bidding remains open until Sep. 10 – however Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) estimates the cost at $500,000.