County Engineer David Betts and Maintenance Supervisor Russell Klegstad brought commissioners up to date on highway department projects at Tuesday’s meeting. Klegstad said many culverts had been replaced this summer.
Klegstad: We had a lot of culvert replacement this summer. We just did the entire Clearwater Road. One big one at Bearskin Landing went really well, the guys did a good job there. That’s the biggest one of the bunch.
He enumerated the culvert locations and then made an observation on a related problem.
Klegstad: We’ve had a lot of beaver problems here lately, trying to deal with the game wardens on that. We’ve been trapping beavers. They are all over the place. Look at them. Everybody’s got them. So, that’s ongoing. They are busy.
Klegstad added the department has been crushing and hauling a lot of gravel this summer as well as patching blacktop and paying special attention to ditching. Bumps on the Gunflint Trail, however will have to wait for the availability of bituminous hot mix.
Klegstad: There are two bumps, that one at Pine Mountain and then one up over to the north. Looking at when the highway was rebuilt, we’re really at a quandary at what we’re going to find when we dig in there. What’s happening there shouldn’t be happening, so we’re thinking it’s going to be a big, old chunk of lead that we’re going to run into, so I’m scared of it just turning into digging out a boulder. You’ve got to dig them out, break them up into big chunks and then roll them. And that’s one I didn’t want to do without hot mix available.
The department will also try to get some sloped shoulder work done before the snow flies, but Klegstad said everything depends on the weather from now on.