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Chinook Pass outside Mount Rainier finally opened today

Post by Jeff Mayor / The News Tribune on June 23, 2011 at 12:02 pm with No Comments »
June 23, 2011 12:02 pm

Chinook Pass finally opened for the season today. That’s about a month later than it normally takes the Washington State Transportation Department to clear snow from the 5,430-foot-high pass on state Route 410 between. The pass provides access between Enumclaw and Naches and serves as the northeast entrance to Mount Rainier National Park.

Meanwhile, park crews have cleared the road to the Sunrise visitors center. But park staff and volunteers are still digging out the snow from around the buildings and working to restore power and water service.

Superintendent Dave Uberuaga told the Associated Press he can’t say for sure that Sunrise would be open for the Fourth of July, but he hopes to have minimal service, such as portable toilets. Visitors would find snow 6 feet deep.

The park had hoped to open the Sunrise area with full services – toilets, food, exhibits – but has pushed that back to July 8 because of the conditions.

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