A sign warns visitors about a recent bear sighting near the Russian River on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017 near Cooper Landing, Alaska. Bears frequent the area, a highly productive sockeye salmon fishery and one of the most popular sportfisheries in the state. (Photo by Elizabeth Earl/Peninsula Clarion)

A sign warns visitors about a recent bear sighting near the Russian River on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017 near Cooper Landing, Alaska. Bears frequent the area, a highly productive sockeye salmon fishery and one of the most popular sportfisheries in the state. (Photo by Elizabeth Earl/Peninsula Clarion)

Russian River Campground road construction nearly done

The construction work is almost done but the public is still advised to be careful turning from the Sterling Highway into the Russian River Campground, where the fee-collection season starts today.

Work started in March on a $1.3 million contract to improve traffic flow at the entrance to the Russian River Campground Road and improve driver visibility at the turnoff.

The work also includes moving the overflow parking lot closer to the entrance and adding more handicap-accessible parking spaces, adding a fish waste disposal facility and building a new fee station for camping and parking.

The target date for completion is June 8, but all work will stop for the Memorial Day weekend, said Alicia King, public affairs officer with the Chugach National Forest. The contractor will shut down end of the day today and restart work Tuesday morning, May 29. D&L Construction, of Cooper Landing, is the contractor on the federal job.

“They have asked the public to be careful,” paying attention to the new traffic pattern into and out from the campground area, King said.

The campground road turns off the Sterling Highway at Mile 52.5, about three miles west of Cooper Landing.

Project work included taking up the old pavement on the campground road. Even with substantial completion by June 8, some paving work may wait until later in the summer or early fall, King said.

The Russian River Campground has 83 campsites. Reservations are required. The campsite fee is $18 per night for a single space, $28 per night for a double. There are more than 125 day-use parking spaces. Water, vault toilets, fire pits and dumpsters are available.

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