Author Topic: TransAm Sec 11-Devastating Floods in Eastern Kentucky-Aug 2 2022  (Read 3989 times)

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Offline ntaylor

The results of the tragic floods in eastern Kentucky are still being assessed and information is beginning to come out, but very slowly.

The following is from, a website for Eastern Kentucky Transportation Updates impacted by the flooding:

August 1, 2022
The Pikeville highway district (District 12) includes six of the 13 disaster counties – Floyd, Johnson, Knott, Letcher, Martin and Pike. All state routes are passable.
In the Jackson highway district (District 10) – which includes Breathitt, Magoffin, Owsley, Perry and Wolfe counties – repairs to roadways will begin today with the help of contractor crews.
Four state routes in Perry County remain closed or partially closed.
Detours are available on three of those routes. The lone exception is Kentucky Route 1146, which runs through the Lost Creek area.
13 crews from the highway districts at Bowling Green, Somerset, Flemingsburg and Manchester are in Breathitt County to assist in clearing county roads.
Bridge inspections are continuing as inspectors are able to gain access.
So far, 627 bridges in the declared disaster counties have been assessed.
Inspectors have found 21 bridges with issues that range from being impassable because of debris to being completely washed out. They include county bridges as well as state bridges.
Transportation Cabinet personnel and vehicles are engaged in transporting supplies and equipment throughout the flood zone (like water, cots, ready-to-eat meals, travel trailers).
Crews are coordinating with the Division of Emergency Management to set up travel trailers for temporary sheltering for displaced families.

Very generally, the big impacts on the TA Section 11 route includes the Kentucky River basin and tributaries from map #129-131. The closures and washouts include, but should not be considered limited to: SR 451 between Chavies and Hazard (map #130), SR 899 between Hindman and Bevinsville (map #131), and possibly others brought to light in the coming days.

Some areas have posted detours around closures, while others will consist of lengthy delays in traffic. As per Kentucky DOT, travelers should use caution and discretion when traveling on these routes, and avoid travel if possible in the affected areas. ACA stands by this recommendation at this time.

For bike travelers on the TA looking to pass through central Appalachia in the coming days, we suggest a different route that avoids eastern Kentucky. The Eastern Express Route is a significant departure to the north, has nearly 300 miles of unpaved surfaces along the C&O Canal Towpath and Great Allegheny Passage, and passes through fairly remote areas between Washington DC and Pittsburgh. It also has the advantage of being a vetted, quality bike route that is commonly ridden by others (and glowingly referred to afterwards) during long-distance bike tours. Also, the route has documented resources including cyclist services, route maps and other helpful details. Eastbound, connections to the Eastern Express can be made from TA Section 8 in eastern Kansas, or further along using various ACA routes (Route 66 Section 2, or Underground Railroad Sections 2-4). The TA Trail can be rejoined south of Washington DC on Atlantic Coast Section 3.

We welcome any other shorter detour options posted here, either from local in-the-know riders or re-routed bike tourists.

ACA Cartographer

« Last Edit: August 02, 2022, 04:23:45 pm by CMajernik »

Offline John Nettles

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Re: TransAm Sec 11-Devastating Floods in Eastern Kentucky-Aug 2 2022
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2022, 06:13:23 pm »
I would like to suggest for those already on the TA eastbound to take the the Underground Railroad (beginning just after Cave-In-Rock, IL) and connect with the Eastern Express (EE) in Corwin, OH.  Take the EE to Washington, DC, and then take the Potomac Tidelands Route to Smith Island and take the ferry over to Crisfield, MD, and connect to the new DelMarVa Route to Ocean City, MD. 

You could also break off the EE in Shepardstown, WV, and take this route ( ) to Front Royal, VA, to connect to the Skyline Drive and Blue Ridge Parkway before reconnecting to the TA near Afton, VA

Of course, you could take the EE to Washington before heading south on the Atlantic Coast Route and reconnecting with the TA near Richmond, VA

For those yet to start the TA, these could be reversed.

Tailwinds, John

Note that

Offline eorogers

Re: TransAm Sec 11-Devastating Floods in Eastern Kentucky-Aug 2 2022
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2022, 06:56:57 pm »
I was planning to pick up the TA in central Colorado and head east with a detour to see friends in Nashville, back to the TA at Mammoth, east to Yorktown,  then south to Jacksonville NC to see my daughter.  I will leave Frisco CO  Aug 23rd.  I'm scheduled to enter Eastern KY on Oct 8th.

I've toured a lot from the Rockies west, dispersed camping in National Forest & BLM with some campgrounds to keep the budget under control.  The federal Senior pass is great for that.  But this is my first trip going east where there is little federal land.

I looked at the Eastern Express, but until you get to the GAP & C&O it looks like state or private campgrounds at $25 to $40 / night and that is a budget killer. 

My options appear to be wait until I get to Nashville (Sept 27 +/-) and see how bad the TA looks going east from there then.  Or go east from Nashville staying south of KY and pick up the TA around Damascus.

Other ideas, and suggestions for finding really cheap / free places to camp off route would be very welcome :-)

For grins, I'm a 75 yr old Vietnam Vet traveling self-contained.  This will be my 6th tour over 2 000 miles and I am very comfortable picking my own route in the West.

Thanks Much


Offline Chakadog

Re: TransAm Sec 11-Devastating Floods in Eastern Kentucky-Aug 2 2022
« Reply #3 on: August 08, 2022, 10:19:42 am »
I appreciate the note from ACA today about the Trans Am reroute. I will be riding the TA from Pueblo next August to Yorktown and I have a feeling even for the annual TA race in June, there will have to be a detour. I will keep on top of the news regarding any such detour, but thank you for addressing this horrible situation. It is truly tragic.

Offline CoMandy

Re: TransAm Sec 11-Devastating Floods in Eastern Kentucky-Aug 2 2022
« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2022, 09:57:49 pm »
I have just completed the TransAm Section 11 (Eastbound). All roads are now open through Eastern Kentucky with one exception.

On Map 130, between Yerkes and Point B, a bridge is out on SR 451 at these coordinates:
37.273722, -83.278639'25.4%22N+83%C2%B016'43.1%22W
The road is not marked closed until you've arrived at the washed out bridge. No detour is posted. There are no indicators that repairs are underway or contemplated. You can hike through the ravine on foot (there's a well-worn path now). I might walk an unloaded bicycle through if I had hiking boots with good traction. No way was I walking a loaded bicycle through with cycling cleats or shower shoes.

You can get around this by taking Couchtown Rd., which runs alongside the North Fork Kentucky River between 0.7 miles east of Yerkes and Point B. This replaces the 4.2 mile section with a 4.4 mile route (so adds only 0.2 miles). Here's the Google Maps view:,-83.2915166/37.267802,-83.2456115/@37.2719513,-83.2861281,14z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m2!4m1!3e1

Otherwise, all debris is removed from the roads. The breaks in the road have been patched, some with gravel, and are often marked ahead with a "Caution: Break in Pavement" sign. There were a couple of areas where there's just one lane, but those were mostly temporary for active work that day and just a few hundred feet each, so likely to remain dynamic. There were no significant delays due to these single lane areas. There's some road deterioration, especially along the shoulders, but nothing worse than other neglected rural roads on the route. Unlike some other places on the TransAm with deteriorating roads, I did not need to dismount at any point during Section 11 to get through.

As usual, watch out for the loose dogs. Dozens of dogs. Every day. But I think that's normal in Kentucky, not unique to the floods.

Otherwise, just be prepared for a heavy heart. The area along the route bears the scars of the devastating floods (overturned houses, furniture in treetops, piles of debris, etc.).

Offline CMajernik

Re: TransAm Sec 11-Devastating Floods in Eastern Kentucky-Aug 2 2022
« Reply #5 on: October 27, 2022, 10:31:02 am »
Thanks for the update. It always helps to get on-the-ground reports.
Carla Majernik
Routes and Mapping Program Director

Adventure Cycling Association
Inspiring people of all ages to travel by bicycle.
800/755-2453, 406/721-1776 x218, 406/721-8754 fax

Follow Routes & Mapping on Twitter: @acaroutes