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Helping Smith Rock, Oregon's Loved To Death Park

Amanda Peacher/OPB

Central Oregon residents have a chance this week to weigh in on the future of the popular Smith Rock State Park. 

The last update to Smith Rock State Park’s master plan was back in 1991. Since then, the iconic red rock area has become a well-known and often crowded destination.

Some have said the park is being loved to death. 

Park manager Scott Brown said overcrowding at Smith Rock is common in the spring and fall. 

“You’ll see all the parking being utilized by late morning, and then you’ll see long lines at the restroom, crowded conditions on the trails, longer queues for climbing and other activities,” said Brown. 

Oregon State parks officials are holding public meetings this week in Bend and Redmond to discuss fixes.

The community will be able to weigh in on how Oregon could better manage parking, trails and other area resources going forward. 

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