Montana Department of Transportation

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Highway 191 - North of West Yellowstone

Highway 191 - North of West Yellowstone project logo

Weekly Updates

August 17-21, 2020

  • The Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project is nearing completion. Early in the week of August 17, crews are finishing painting the roadway lines throughout the project and are installing signage. These painted lines are temporary and in place to help drivers identify the centerline and where passing areas exist. Workers will return in the fall to paint the final roadway lines with a longer-lasting epoxy paint.
  • Two stops can be expected this week and workers will be moving throughout the corridor, between Tepee Creek Trailhead and Rainbow Point Road. Please be alert for changing traffic conditions.
  • Note that this work should not take more than a few days. There is one final message we intend to distribute next week to notify everyone that the project has wrapped up. Thank you for your understanding and support throughout this project.
  • Our project hotline is open for questions between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

Previous Updates

August 10-16, 2020

  • The Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues construction for the week of August 10. Early in the week, drivers can expect a stop near Rainbow Point Road. Work will then shift for one or two days to be throughout the entire 22-mile project, from Tepee Creek Trailhead to US Forest Service Road 986. Pilot cars will be operating to assist with travel during this time and the speed limit will be 35 mph. After that, work will continue throughout the corridor but the work areas will be shorter.
  • Workers are chip sealing throughout the project, including the small area by Rainbow Point Road. This process involves laying the final top layer of asphalt and is key to sealing the pavement and keeping water out. They will first chip seal the area by Rainbow Point Road and then move north from mile marker 9 to mile marker 31. Another crew will be coming in behind this crew to sweep and pick up all of the chips, or gravel that may become loose during this process.
  • Please do not park in turnouts while the chip seal is underway. Turnouts are also having this work done and signs will be in place to remind drivers not to pull over. All trailheads/parking areas remain open throughout this time, but please do not park on the asphalt as operations will be happening very close by.
  • The width restriction for this project has concluded! Please note, however, that there is an ongoing 11 feet width restriction in Big Sky for the Big Sky Bridge Decks project.
  • The Montana Department of Transportation thanks residents and visitors for their patience during this busy construction season. This project is nearing completion and drivers will soon be able to enjoy this beautiful corridor without stopping.
  • Our project hotline is open for questions between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

August 3-9, 2020

  • The Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues construction for the week of August 3. Drivers can expect up to three stops in the project area this week.
  • Workers are finishing paving this week and will be on the southbound side of US 191 between mile markers 9 and 15. They have been using hot-in-place recycling, a technique that uses the existing asphalt and restores it to a like-new condition.
  • Crews also began installing rumble strips throughout the project area. This work is expected to be complete within the week of August 3. Workers are also finishing guardrail installation in eight key areas and may be finishing this work early in the week as well. Please be alert for changing traffic patterns. Both the rumble strip and guardrail work will require traffic to be reduced to one lane with alternating travel.
  • Please note that crews will still need to return through the area within the next few weeks to apply a chip seal, a layer of asphalt on the top surface that will seal the pavement and keep water out. Water is one of the main causes of deterioration and damage for a roadway and an unsealed road would deteriorate much more rapidly.
  • Wide loads wider than 11 feet are required to take another route throughout construction. Our project hotline is open for questions between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

July 27-31, 2020

  • The Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues construction for the week of July 27. Drivers can expect up to three stops in the project area this week.
  • Workers are primarily performing hot-in-place recycling, the paving technique that uses the existing asphalt and mixes it with rejuvenator to restore it to a like-new condition. Drivers can expect to see a line of slow-moving trucks for this work. This paving has been proceeding quickly and one side of Highway 191 has been completed. Crews will be on the southbound side of US 191 between mile markers 9 and 23.
  • Crews will also be installing guardrail in eight different locations. This will require traffic control to be set up in various areas of the project. However, these workers will only work on one guardrail location at a time. Please be alert for changing traffic patterns.
  • Drivers on July 27/28 can expect an additional work area at the Gallatin River Bridge near Specimen Creek Trailhead. Crews are paving the area around the bridge to ensure a smooth transition from bridge to roadway surface.
  • Once hot-in-place recycling is complete, crews will focus on installing rumble strips and chip sealing, adding a final layer of asphalt on top of the surface to seal the pavement and keep water out. Workers will also sweep throughout the highway. Roughly three to four more weeks of construction remain.
  • Please note that delays may be longer as the paving train crosses bridges. Due to the narrow width of the bridges and the size of the equipment, traffic needs to pause in order to let these vehicles through.
  • Wide loads wider than 11 feet are required to take another route throughout construction. Our project hotline is open for questions between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

July 20-26, 2020

  • The Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues construction for the week of July 20. Crews are located on US 191 between mile markers 20 and 30, near Bighorn Pass and Daily Creek Trailhead.
  • Work on the Gallatin River bridge has finished up and crews are now focused on paving throughout the corridor. This week, they will start near mile marker 20 and move north to mile marker 30, paving roughly 2.5 miles each day. Drivers can expect single-lane traffic around the equipment with delays of roughly 15 minutes.
  • Crews are using the method hot-in-place recycling to pave the road. This process involves heating up the existing asphalt, mixing it with rejuvenator to restore the condition, and laying it back on the road. Drivers can expect to see smoky conditions by this work.
  • Wide loads wider than 11 feet are required to take another route throughout construction.
  • Our project hotline is open for questions between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

July 13-19, 2020

  • The Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues construction for the week of July 13. Crews are located at a bridge over the Gallatin River, south of Specimen Creek Trailhead, and are between US Forest Service Road 986 and Bighorn Pass.
  • On the Gallatin River bridge, the second half of the bridge is finishing the curing process. Traffic is expected to return to two-way traffic by the week of July 20.
  • Crews have started hot-in-place recycling, the environmentally-friendly paving method that involves restoring the existing asphalt to a like-new condition. This technique reduces the amount of mining needed and requires fewer asphalt trucks. Workers are at the southern end of the project and are paving the northbound lane on Highway 191 in two-mile segments. Once they reach the area by Tepee Creek trailhead, they will turn around and pave the southbound lane.
  • Wide loads wider than 11 feet are required to take another route throughout construction.
  • Our project hotline is open for questions between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

July 6-12, 2020

  • The Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues construction for the week of July 6. Crews are located at a bridge over the Gallatin River, south of Specimen Creek Trailhead, and between mile marker 9 near Grayling Creek and mile marker 20 by Bighorn Pass.
  • On the Gallatin River bridge, the first half of the bridge deck has finished curing, or fully hardening. The second half of the bridge is now curing. Traffic is expected to return to two-way traffic in this area by mid-July.
  • Crews anticipate starting hot-in-place recycling between mile marker 9 near Grayling Creek and mile marker 20 by Bighorn Pass pending good weather and no delays. Hot-in-place recycling is a paving method that uses three main steps:
    • 1. Crews align equipment in a "train." The first driver manages a heater that heats the roadway to the point where the top layer becomes soft and removable.
    • 2. A second worker assists in removing the surface layer of asphalt. They mix it with rejuvenator which helps restore the asphalt to a like-new condition.
    • 3. The “caboose” works on laying the asphalt back down on the road, as if they were laying new asphalt.
  • Please note that crews may be in the area by Rainbow Point to finish striping, or painting the roadway lines. This work will take one day and impacts will be minimal.
  • Thank you for your patience throughout our multiple construction areas. This project is currently on track to finish major construction in August.
  • Wide loads wider than 11 feet are required to take another route throughout construction.
  • Our project hotline is open for questions between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday for the week of June 29. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

June 29 - July 5, 2020

  • The Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues construction for the week of June 29. Crews are mainly located at a bridge over the Gallatin River, south of Specimen Creek Trailhead, and may also be present early in the week at Rainbow Point Road.
  • Excavation work near Tepee Creek Trailhead has wrapped up. On the Gallatin River bridge, one side of the bridge deck is finishing curing, the process needed for the surface to fully harden. Traffic will soon switch to the other side for the same paving and curing process.
  • At Rainbow Point Road, crews are paving. This work is anticipated to wrap up tomorrow, June 27, but if there are any delays in schedule, workers will finish early next week.
  • Crews will start hot-in-place recycling, an environmentally-friendly paving method, in July, after the holiday weekend. Riverside Contracting crews will be off the roadway starting from July 3rd to allow for easier travel ahead of Independence Day weekend. The only traffic stop that drivers can expect to encounter will be at the Gallatin River Bridge and delays will be minimal.
  • Wide loads wider than 11 feet are required to take another route throughout construction.
  • Our project hotline is open for questions between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday for the week of June 29. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

June 22-28, 2020

  • MDT’s Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues construction for the week of June 22. Crews are located in three different areas:
    • Excavation 2 miles south of Tepee Creek Trailhead, near mile marker 30.
    • Bridge work over the Gallatin River, south of Specimen Creek Trailhead.
    • Installation of Rainbow Point Road turn lane.
  • Due to cold, wet weather, paving near the excavation work by mile marker 30 has been moved to this week, the week of June 22. Paving will take a few days to complete. Drivers can continue to expect single-lane traffic while this work is ongoing.
  • Work on the Specimen Creek bridge has wrapped up for now, but crews will return in the coming weeks to finish a few days of work on the ends of the bridge. On the Gallatin River bridge, one side of the bridge deck continues to cure, or fully harden. As each side of the bridge needs at least two weeks to cure, this structure will continue to be limited to one-lane until mid-July.
  • At Rainbow Point Road, crews are placing a gravel surface down in order to create a level area for paving. Paving and striping (painting the road markings) is expected to occur towards the end of June/early July. Construction on the northbound turn lane into Rainbow Point Road will then be complete.
  • Crews will start hot-in-place recycling, an environmentally-friendly paving method, in July. Using this method, workers will heat up the existing road, mix the asphalt with a rejuvenator that restores the asphalt to a like-new condition, and then lay the asphalt back down on the road.
  • Wide loads wider than 11 feet are required to take another route throughout construction.
  • Our project hotline is open for questions between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

June 15-21, 2020

  • The Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues construction for the week of June 15. Crews are located in four different areas:
    • Excavation 2 miles south of Tepee Creek Trailhead, near mile marker 30.
    • Bridge work over Specimen Creek by Specimen Creek Trailhead.
    • Bridge work over the Gallatin River, south of Specimen Creek Trailhead.
    • Installation of Rainbow Point Road turn lane.
  • The excavation work by mile marker 30 is wrapping up and expected to start paving soon, either later in the week of June 15 or the week of June 22. Paving this area will take a few days to complete. Drivers can expect single-lane traffic while this work is ongoing.
  • Crews on the Specimen Creek bridge are also wrapping up and paving. Most work on this structure is expected to finish by the week of June 22. On the Gallatin River bridge, crews have begun the paving and curing process. The entire curing process is expected to take roughly a month to complete, with each side of the bridge taking at a minimum of 14 days to allow for the surface to fully set. Drivers may see single-lane traffic with no workers present. That is to ensure the curing process continues without disruption from workers or vehicles.
  • At Rainbow Point Road, crews are excavating and placing a gravel surface down in order to create a level area for the road to be widened. The road widening is needed in order to add the northbound turn lane in to the current road configuration.
  • Hot-in-place recycling, the method that MDT is using to pave the long stretch of roadway between Tepee Creek Trailhead and US Forest Service Road 986, is anticipated to start next month. Crews will only work on a few miles of one side of the roadway at a time – the entire stretch will not be shut down all at once.
  • Our project hotline is open for questions between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

June 8-14, 2020

  • The Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues for the week of June 8. Crews are working in four different locations.
    • Excavation 2 miles south of Tepee Creek Trailhead, near mile marker 30.
    • Bridge work over Specimen Creek by Specimen Creek Trailhead.
    • Bridge work over the Gallatin River, south of Specimen Creek Trailhead.
    • Installation of Rainbow Point Road turn lane.
  • The excavation work by mile marker 30 will help smooth out the road so that once finished, drivers will not need to reduce their speed in order to safely travel on this section of roadway. This work is likely to wrap up earlier in the week. However, a gravel surface will remain until paving occurs in a few weeks. Drivers are advised to watch for reduced speeds and changing traffic patterns.
  • On the bridges, crews are paving and allowing for the bridge surface to cure. This process will take a minimum of 14 days. Single-lane traffic continues during this time to allow for one side of the bridge to finish the curing process at a time.
  • Construction on the Rainbow Point Road turn lane is starting with milling, or tearing up the top surface of the road to allow for widening of the roadway and resurfacing to occur. Crews are also excavating in the area. Residents can expect this work to last roughly one month.
  • Thank you for your patience throughout construction. MDT will ensure that delay times continue to remain minimal, even as traffic headed to West Yellowstone or Yellowstone National Park increases.
  • Wide loads wider than 11 feet are required to take another route throughout construction.
  • Our project hotline is open for questions between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

June 1-7, 2020

  • The Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues for the week of June 1. Crews are excavating roughly 2 miles south of Tepee Creek Trailhead and are continuing their bridge work over Specimen Creek and the Gallatin River, near Specimen Creek Trailhead.
  • The excavation work will create a smooth roadway in this area. Crews are also installing new guardrail near the bridges and will be prepping the top surface of the bridges for paving. This will create a smooth surface and ensure that there are no cracks or potholes on these structures.
  • Work on the Rainbow Point turn lane is anticipated to start the week of June 8. Wide loads wider than 11 feet are required to take another route throughout construction.
  • Our project hotline is open for questions between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

May 25-31, 2020

  • The Montana Department of Transportation’s Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues for the week of May 25. Crews are expected to stop work by noon on Friday, May 22 for Memorial Day weekend. Work will resume on Tuesday, May 26. This will help delay times remain minimal for travel over the holiday weekend. Drivers can expect to see single-lane traffic with a traffic signal in place, even during off-hours when workers are not present.
  • Crews are repairing bridges over Specimen Creek and the Gallatin River, near Specimen Creek Trailhead. They are also expecting to start excavation work near mile marker 30, roughly 2 miles south of Tepee Creek Trailhead. The highway in this area has become uneven and reduced speeds are needed to travel on this section. This excavation work will help create a smooth and level road so that drivers can safely maintain their travel speeds.
  • Work on the Rainbow Point turn lane is anticipated to start June 1. Wide loads wider than 11 feet are required to take another route throughout construction.
  • Our project hotline is open for questions between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.

May 18-24, 2020

  • The Highway 191 – North of West Yellowstone project continues for the week of May 18. Crews are working on bridges over Specimen Creek, near Specimen Creek Trailhead, and the Gallatin River, 3 miles south of Specimen Creek. Bridge repairs include fixing the bridge surface that vehicles drive on and installing new concrete rails along the sides of the bridges. The concrete rails are replacing metal ones and help bring the bridges up to modern, safer standards.
  • Pending good weather and no unexpected delays, crews may also begin excavation work near mile marker 30 and Dailey Creek, roughly 2 miles south of Tepee Creek Trailhead. The shifting landscape in this area has caused the road itself to move and change. To help combat this and ensure the road does not further deteriorate, crews will be reconstructing the road and nearby hill.
  • Delay times continue to be minimal. Wide loads wider than 11 feet are required to take another route throughout construction.
  • Our project hotline is open for questions between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 406-207-4484 to reach us. Text updates are also available. To register text HIGHWAY191 to 41411.