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Large washout forces closure of Comet Falls Trail at Mount Rainier

Post by Jeff Mayor / The News Tribune on June 12, 2012 at 10:23 am with No Comments »
June 12, 2012 10:43 am

A washout has forced Mount Rainier National Park officials to close the Comet Falls Trail 1 mile from the trailhead. (Janet Jensen/staff photographer, file 2005)
The Comet Falls Trail at Mount Rainier National Park has been temporarily closed to public use this morning, due to extremely hazardous conditions on the trail.

Superintendent Randy King said the closure begins 1 mile beyond the trailhead. A substantial washout, about 10 feet across and 30 feet deep, made worse with the recent rains over the past several weeks, has created unstable conditions that have undermined the trail approximately 1 mile in from the trailhead.

Snow and ice in the area of the washout adds to the hazard, especially if a hiker were to attempt to walk around the washout, King said. He said that snow and ice conditions all along the trail are hazardous to travel even before getting to the washout area.

King expects park trail crew will access the area next week to begin building a safe route around the washout.

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