With the beginning of the traditional start of the summer recreation season coming this weekend, regardless of above normal snowpack many campgrounds, roads and trails on the Gifford Pinchot National Forest will be open:
Here is a rundown of conditions on the forest:
Some of the campgrounds open for Memorial Day Weekend include:
- Beaver, north of Carson
- Government Mineral Springs, north of Carson
- Iron Creek, south of Randle
- Kalama Horse Camp, north of Cougar
- La Wis Wis, east of Packwood (no water yet – reduced fee)
- Lower Falls, east of Cougar
- North Fork and North Fork Group Site, south of Randle (no water yet –
- reduced fee)
- Pacificorp Campgrounds, Lewis River Reservoirs (call 503-813-6666)
- Tower Rock, south of Randle
Many other high-elevation campgrounds such as Takhlakh Lake, Olallie Lake, Chain-of-Lakes and Walupt Lake should be open by late June or mid-July, depending on weather conditions.
A limited number of Forest trails that are open, snow-free and passable:
- Bunker Hill Trail #145
- Glacier Lake Trail #89 (blow-downs logged out, ½ mile hike from road
- closure to trailhead)
- Gotchen Creek Trails #54, #39, #38 and Lower Loop
- Falls Creek Falls Trail #152A
- Hummocks Trail #229
- Lewis River Trail #31
- Siouxon Trail #130
- Whistle Punk #59
- Forest Road 23 between Randle and Trout Lake is currently closed by snow at higher elevations.
- Forest Road 83 is open at this time only to Marble Mt. Sno-Park.
- Forest Road 25 connecting Randle to the Lewis River Highway (Forest Road 90 east of Cougar) is expected to open by early July. Be aware of the one-lane bridge at Benham Creek.
- Forest Road 52, Skate Creek Road, between Ashford and Packwood is open.
- Forest Road 99 from Forest Road 25 to the Windy Ridge Viewpoint on the east side of Mount St. Helens is currently closed by snow. This road should open by July pending snowmelt.
- Forest Road 90 is currently open from the west to Quartz Creek Trailhead. There is a large slide blocking both lanes at milepost 35.
Travelers should drive cautiously on all Forest roads and be prepared to encounter sections of roads damaged this past winter.
Apes’ Headquarters at Ape Cave is open weekends only until June 25, including Memorial Day weekend, and then daily until Labor Day.
Additional information is available on the new Gifford Pinchot National Forest website.