IT is unlikely the road to Barrington Tops will be open for the first flurry of snow this season after it was severely damaged in the March floods.
Gloucester floods caused major damage to several roadways with Scone Road and Barrington Tops Forest Road taking a beating.
While crews worked to reopen access on Scone Road for residents, Forestry Corporation closed Barrington Tops Forest Road indefinitely on March 23.
The only problem is, it's a thoroughfare for people who travel between Gloucester and Scone, as well as the main route for residents living west of Barrington Tops National Park.
One such resident is Michelle Jeffrey.
"There is a road open to Gloucester but it's like bush-bashing and I'm not comfortable driving it.
"I rang National Parks (and Wildlife Service), (MidCoast) council, state forests (Forestry Corporation) with no luck about when the road would reopen," Michelle explained.
Her other concern is about access once the snow starts. The back roads she's using to get to Scone will become harder to navigate.
According to a Forestry Corporation spokesperson the damage to the road is extensive.
"Due to the scale of the damage the process to assess and develop a program of work will take some time. Initial assessments indicate repairs are expected to cost several million dollars and take some months to complete," the spokesperson said.
"Forestry Corporation recognises the importance of Barrington Tops Forest Road to local residents and communities. Staff are currently working to safely access the impacted areas to further assess the damage and develop a priority repair program as quickly as possible."
Member of the Legislative Council Sam Farraway has been tasked with taking care of matters for the Upper Hunter following the unexpected resignation of sitting member, Michael Johnsen on March 31.
"I will continue to work with the members of the community and the Forestry Corporation to ensure that this vital roadway is a priority for repair and that the local community can see it open again as soon as possible," Mr Farraway said.
As there is no current timeline, it would appear the road won't be opened in time for the winter season which attracts countless visitors to the area for a glimpse of snow.
This will have a flow-on affect for businesses on both sides of Barrington Tops as many stop for fuel, a hot drink and something to eat.
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