The latest on Oregon eclipse traffic - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

The latest on Oregon eclipse traffic

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PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - The Latest on traffic in Oregon in preparation for the total solar eclipse (all times local):
    
8:40 p.m.
    
Authorities have reopened a central Oregon highway after motorists heading to a solar eclipse festival jammed the road, leading to a partial closing and rerouting of traffic.
    
Prineville police tweeted that U.S. Highway 26 near Prineville was back open to traffic just after 8 p.m.
    
The Symbiosis festival in a rural area of Crook County is expected to draw up to 35,000 people over the next four days before Monday's eclipse.
    
Up to 1 million visitors are expected in Oregon for the total solar eclipse on Monday.
    
More than 200,000 are expected to converge in central Oregon.
    
___
    
5:25 p.m.
    
Authorities have closed the eastbound lane of a central Oregon highway because of a 30-mile traffic jam leading to a solar eclipse festival.
    
Peter Murphy, spokesman for the Oregon Department of Transportation, said traffic was backed up Thursday about 14 miles on U.S. Highway 26 near Prineville and another 14 or 15 miles to the festival venue on a local road.
    
Authorities are directing traffic to an alternative route using local roads and U.S. Forest Service roads.
    
The Symbiosis festival in a rural area of Crook County is expected to draw up to 35,000 people over the next four days before Monday's eclipse. Prineville police tweeted that cars were at a standstill.
    
Up to 1 million visitors are expected in Oregon for the total solar eclipse on Monday.
    
More than 200,000 are expected in central Oregon.

Eclipse traffic already heavy on Thursday  in central Oregon

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - Traffic is already a headache in central Oregon as thousands of people arrive before Monday's total solar eclipse.
    
Traffic was backed up early Thursday on U.S. Highway 26 west of Prineville, the last town before the turnoff for an eclipse-themed festival that's expected to attract 30,000 people in a remote area with narrow, one-lane roads. A handful of gas stations in Bend and Prineville also temporarily ran out of fuel Wednesday before getting restocked.
    
In Madras, to the north, traffic was also picking up Thursday but so far there were no traffic jams. The town of about 6,000 is considered one of the best viewing locations in the nation and is expecting at least 100,000 people to pass through over the next four days.
    
_____
    
This story has been corrected to show that traffic was backing west of Prineville Thursday morning, not east.
    
Follow Gillian Flaccus on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/gflaccus

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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