Road damaged by Tropical Storm Hilary reopens to Vegas-area mountain hamlets almost 2 months later

Flooding in Mount Charleston
Flooding in Mount Charleston(kvvu)
Published: Oct. 27, 2023 at 12:27 PM PDT
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LAS VEGAS, Nev. (KOLO) - After nearly two months of repairs, authorities have reopened the first of three state storm-damaged highways that provide primary access for residential enclaves and recreation areas on Mount Charleston in the Las Vegas area.

However, officials said Thursday that some popular hiking trails will remain closed due to extensive damage from flooding spawned in early September by remnants of Tropical Storm Hilary, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.

“I’m going to say two years, maybe more,” Deborah MacNeil, Spring Mountains National Recreation Area manager, told the newspaper. “I know that’s not what people want to hear.”

State Route 156 reopened Thursday in Lee Canyon, and Mario Gomez, a Nevada Department of Transportation engineer, said Route 157 is scheduled to reopen Nov. 3 in Kyle Canyon. Route 158, a mountain highway connecting those roads, is slated to reopen Nov. 10.

Gomez put the cost of road repairs at about $11 million, the Review-Journal reported.

Water line and utility repairs continue for mountain hamlets including Old Town not far from the Lee Canyon Ski and Snowboard Resort, 35 miles (56 kilometers) northwest of Las Vegas.

Corey Enus, a Las Vegas Valley Water District official, told the Review-Journal crews hope to have residential water service restored by next week.

Jim Seely, ski resort marketing director, said his facility might open by mid-November.

Hilary first slammed as a hurricane into Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula, causing one death and widespread flooding before weakening to a tropical storm packing torrential rains and sweeping into Southern California and parts of the Southwest U.S.