Parking Relief is Coming

Rex House field parking relief for Smith Rock State Park
Rex House field parking relief for Smith Rock State Park

April 26, 2016

Back in October Deschutes County took away 97 overflow parking spots on the west side of Crooked River Drive.

They cited both safety concerns and road damage from cars straddling the edge of the road and the shoulder. The spots have been sorely missed, with parking filling up sometimes as early as 10:00 AM, with some having to hike up to 2 miles to get INTO the park.

We told you back then that a group of engineers, park management, and designers were working on a temporary solution to be in place summer. Well, it's going to be more like August.

The plan is to create a temporary OVERFLOW ONLY parking area for 75-100 spots, to be opened at the discretion of park management.

The parking area will be located by the Northern Point, just before the "Turnaround Parking Lot" in the "Rex" field on the right side of the road by the Park Field Office overlooking The Gorge.

The parking will be on grass, sectioned off with rubber parking stops and fencing, along with signage and chalk.

A master plan for a more permanent solution will start up in the next few months, which the park expects to be finalized within 2 years once the process begins and public meetings are held.

Breathe. Use your inside voice. Then breathe again. It'll be better soon.