Business thankful US 2 reopens following Bolt Creek Fire

Around 10 a.m. on Saturday, WSDOT crews reopened US 2 to traffic. The road reopening follows about two weeks of closures due to the Bolt Creek Fire.

The Bolt Creek Fire started on Sept. 10. Investigators still do not know what caused the fire.

Officials are still working to fully contain the flames, which they estimate are now at 10, 599 acres.

PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Bolt Creek Fire near Skykomish 96% contained; US 2 to reopen Sept. 24

Despite crews still working along US 2, the road reopened Saturday morning.

"Business has been down, but we’ve made this so that we’re able to weather, pretty much, any kind of storm. It’ll be nice. It is nice, that traffic has picked back up," said Devon Wetzel.

Wetzel is co-owner of the Sand Bar Tavern in Gold Bar.

The business sits right along US 2, and Wetzel says a majority of his customers are people driving past. So, the last two weeks have been a challenge.

However, even though they did not see as many customers, Wetzel says they still stayed busy.

"Kittitas Fire was in our parking lot for the better part of a week. So, we just kind of came here. I was here around 9, 10 o’clock in the morning, even though I don’t open until noon. Just to give them a hand just in case they need it, a cup of coffee, a bathroom, you know, just a place to chill out," he said.

Wetzel says he feels good he was able to provide some comfort to the crews who were working long days fighting the fire.

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"If they’re willing to do that to help out. We should be willing to do our part to help out," he said.

Even though US 2 is open, officials ask drivers to reduce their speed.

They also say to use caution through the fire area and to expect occasional smoke across the road and the possibility of flames on the hillside.

If you do come across these conditions, turn on your headlights and proceed slowly without stopping.