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Flood-damaged Death Valley opens popular site to public

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The Associated Press

Associated Press

Death Valley National Park, California (AP) — Death Valley National Park's most popular site will be open to the public on Saturday, two weeks after a major flash flood, but the National Park Service will keep visitors warned to expect delays and ensuing road closures.

Locations that will reopen include the Furnace Creek Visitor Center, Badwater Basin, Zabriskie Point and Mesquite Dunes, according to the park's Facebook page.

Park access is limited to State Route 190 and Panamint Valley Road.

Death Valley was hit by historic monsoon thunderstorm rain on August 5, causing millions of dollars in damage to roads and facilities.

State Route 190 through the park reopened around 5:00 p.m. The California Department of Transportation announced Friday, two weeks after road shoulders were closed due to flash floods that damaged miles.

Crews will continue to fill swept sections and drivers may experience slowdowns and lane closures in the fall to allow repairs, he said. said.

Visitors were warned to plan ahead and not rely on GPS devices. This is because all other paved roads remain closed for repairs and outback roads are still being evaluated.

This summer's very active monsoons have also damaged roads elsewhere in the California desert, including the south side of Mojave National Conservation Area and Joshua Tree National Park. .

Joshua Tree Park officials urged visitors to drive carefully and watch out for desert turtles, as the water encourages the appearance of desert turtles. It can be mistaken for rocks on the road.

The US National Weather Service's San Diego office said a surge in monsoon humidity will increase the chances of thunderstorms in mountains and deserts over the weekend. Further increases are expected in the middle of next week.