Old McKenzie Pass

Snowbank on Hwy. 242By Ayleen Crotty

MCKENZIE BRIDGE: Follow the path of an 1860s wagon route and get ready to climb. The Old McKenzie Pass is a special region of Oregon that, due to extreme snowfall and narrow winding climbs, is only open a few months out of the year. At the beginning of the season, ODOT plows the road and opens it exclusively for non-motorized traffic. The smooth, clear pass is now available to bikers likely until June 16th – so get out there while you can.

The Old McKenzie Pass will opens to motorists on June 16

Rotary snow plowThe McKenzie Pass Highway (OR 242) will officially open to all traffic on Sunday, June 16th, at 9 a.m.. The highway has been closed due to winter snows since November 13th.

Rotary plow on Hwy. 242On April 24th, ODOT crews had cleared a single lane to the summit of the Old McKenzie Pass Highway - at the Dee Wright Observatory - from the east gate.  Two days later the East side access to Dee Wright was available to pedestrians and bicyclists only.

Rotary plow at Dee WrightOn April 24th, ODOT crews had cleared a single lane to the summit of the Old McKenzie Pass Highway - at the Dee Wright Observatory - from the east gate.  Two days later the East side access to Dee Wright was available to pedestrians and bicyclists only.

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McKenzie River Reflections is the weekly newspaper serving Oregon's McKenzie River Valley. Available by mail for $23/yr in Lane County, $29/yr outside Lane. Digital subscriptions are $23/yr. Subscribe at: http://mckenzieriverreflectionsnewspaper.com/catalog/subscriptions-0. Purchase copies online at: http://mckenzieriverreflectionsnewspaper.com/catalog/back-issues-0. Read about area communities including Cedar Flat, Walterville, Camp Creek, Leaburg, Vida, Nimrod, Finn Rock, Blue River, Rainbow and McKenzie Bridge.