Heavy rain that swept through the Ohio Valley over the past few days continues to keep a section of Wheeling's Heritage Trail between Claytor and Elm Grove closed.
Recreational activities are not permitted there due to a large mudslide that continues to reappear in that area.
Wheeling-Ohio County Rails to Trails Project Engineer R. "Scat" Scatterday said while the mud in that area has been cleared by crews with the Wheeling Operations Department, it continues to reappear on the trail and flow into the edge of Big Wheeling Creek.
Photo by Scott McCloskey
Wheeling-Ohio County Rails to Trails Project Engineer R. “Scat” Scatterday looks over a closed section of Wheeling’s Heritage Trail between Claytor and Elm Grove on Thursday afternoon.
"The recent precipitation over the last couple of days has caused the blockage to re-occur," said Scatterday, following an inspection of the trail Thursday afternoon. "They actually cleaned this down to the asphalt, but since there is no place for the water to go under the trail ... it comes out across the trail."
Scatterday said the high winds that swept through the area caused branches to fall onto the trail in many locations, as well.
"So we're just dealing with typical winter weather," he added.
Public Works Director Russell Jebbia recently said the mud invading the city's trail has been an ongoing problem that stems from a Bethlehem resident's hilly property that is slipping above a wooded ravine in that area.
"Regardless of the weather, every day of the year people have so directed their lives that they use this trail, and when it gets shut down you not only mess up their day, you mess up their life ... because they do rely on this thing being available," Scatterday said. "So we are mindful of it, and we're going to do what we can to minimize that interruption."