REDMOND, OR -- Highway 26 through Prineville remained congested most of Thursday, prompting officials to reroute thousands of vehicles around the city for several hours. An overwhelming number of RVs, trailers, trucks, cars and vans were headed to a Big Summit Prairie, creating a line of traffic more than 15 miles, at times. Prineville Police rerouted them on to Paulina Highway to ease congestion. By Friday morning, much of it had dissipated.
Many of those planning to attend the Symbiosis event in the Ochocos traveled far and wide to watch the eclipse. Pasan Tennakoon flew in to Redmond Thursday from Australia. He tells KBND News, "We've got like us and at least maybe 30 people from Perth, maybe even more; That's our hometown back in Australia. And, we're all traveling in separate groups, but we're all trying to convene and meet together as one and have an epic time over the next week or so." He and his traveling partner say they are prepared for the crowds. After 30 hours on various planes, he said he could handle a few more hours on the road.
But, for locals trying to get around Central Oregon, frustration is mounting. Redmond Airport Director Zach Bass says a Sisters resident, who called Roberts Field this week, is not alone in worrying about his Monday flight. "They asked us if we were doing anything to mitigate the traffic between Sisters and Redmond to make sure the flyers could get out. So, we just want to make sure people are very clear there's going to be a lot of traffic that day. And again, we have no control at the airport over that. So, if you have a flight that day, make sure you're early, you take into account that traffic." Bass suggests checking Tripcheck
for drive-time information, and get to the airport at least two hours ahead of your flight to accommodate longer security lines.
Photo courtesy of Jim Draper.
Eclipse Coverage on KBND is supported in part by Awnings Unlimited. Shade yourself from the sun with Awnings Unlimited at 5541-389-1619 and awningsunlimited.net.