The Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests is currently applying for grant funding from the Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation’s Recreational Road and Bridge Program to supplement funding for the Great American Outdoors Act Historic Routes and Trailheads and Road Access projects.

The application for this funding includes a proposal for approximately $228,000 of grant funds to supplement $87,000 in Forest Service funding intended to restore historic access to 24 miles of the Lolo Motorway between Saddle Camp Junction (Forest Service Road #107) and Shotgun Road Junction (FSR 109). The project is located in the Central Idaho Complex Priority Area on the forest’s Lochsa-Powell Ranger District and is designed to improve motorized recreational access within the historic corridor.

The Lolo Motorway (FSR 500) is a historic route built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s. The Lewis and Clark and Nez Perce National Historic Trails also pass nearby through the same corridor. The route is a high–clearance adventure road even under ideal conditions; however, due to the high-altitude location and native surfaces of the road, the travelway has weathered in several places, producing rough, rocky stretches that are challenging even for suitable four–wheel–drive vehicles. The Forest Service hopes to restore this road to its original condition by improving these rough and damaged areas of road surface without compromising the historic character of the route.

The project would break up existing rock, crushing it into a manageable surface that could then be bladed and shaped to maintain the surface drainage. This project will also maintain existing drainage by replacing culverts and opening and replacing open top culverts that have deteriorated over the years. This work would support a future effort to restore sections of road where the subgrade and surfacing has eroded.

If you have any questions about the applications for grant funding, please contact Brandon Anderson at (208) 494-4250. You may email Letters of Support for the project to brandon.anderson4@usda.gov.

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