Aging infrastructure closed part of a popular path at Sluice Boxes State Park near Belt over the summer, but it could be next fall before repairs can be made.
Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks said the Tiger Creek Trestle Bridge was closed for structural failure around mid-July.
Park officials have monitored the bridge for several years, but when one side of the structure sank six-to-eight inches, they decided it was no longer safe for hikers.
Park manager Collin Maas said right now, they are waiting for cost estimates on a replacement.
They hope to fund the project through a recreational trails grant, but Maas said work will likely have to wait for the parks slow season next fall.
“You can hike either end of the park from the north end, from the Evans Riceville Bridge, or from the overlook access to that point, and then turn around and then hike back out or you could start from the south end, from Logging Creek Bridge, and then hike to that point, but at this point, there’s no safe alternative route around that trestle” Maas said.
The Tiger Creek Trestle is one of two remaining railroad bridges in the park.
-Reported by Joe Huisinga/MTN News