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Northwest Traveler

Travel news, consumer advice and trip reports for the Northwest and beyond.

Category: national parks
July 21, 2014 at 4:52 PM

Too close to wild things on Olympic park trail

I wanted to keep hiking along a trail in Olympic National Park, but the animals got there first. I came around a rocky outcrop on a Hurricane Ridge trail recently to find  a mountain goat (feeling protective, with a baby goat nearby) on one  side of the trail, a curious deer on the other. I definitely did…

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Comments | More in mountain goats, Olympic National Park | Topics: goat management, mount rainier national park

July 10, 2014 at 6:01 AM

Should climbers pay for their rescue? Here’s one who’s ‘paying it forward’ (Take our poll)

Should rescued climbers be billed for their rescue? It’s a question that can generate more heat than a steam vent atop Mount Rainier. You might consider the case of Kelly Jackson, of Maple Valley, who was rescued from the mountain last August. Jackson, then 43, and four friends — all but one first-timers — topped the…

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Comments | Topics: mount rainier, mount rainier national park, rescue billing

July 7, 2014 at 11:53 AM

Olympic park’s Madison Falls Trail closed for improvements

The one-tenth mile Madison Falls Trail in Olympic National Park’s Elwha Valley has closed to public entry for three weeks beginning Monday.  Park trail crews and volunteers will make significant improvements to the trail, including construction of a new rock retaining wall, installation of new railings and trail surface, and replanting of the work area. This…

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Comments | More in national parks, Northwest, Olympic National Park, Outdoors, Parks | Topics: elwha valley, Madison Falls, olympic national park

June 30, 2014 at 11:22 AM

Summer’s here, and Sunrise is open at Mount Rainier

Some people say summer starts in Western Washington the day after the Fourth of July, but another good measure is when the Sunrise area opens at Mount Rainier National Park. By that measure, summer officially started on Friday. The Sunrise road opened Friday, and the Sunrise Day Lodge began summer operations on Saturday. The Sunrise Visitor…

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Comments | More in Mount Rainier National Park, Mount Rainier National Park, national parks, Northwest | Topics: mount rainier, mount rainier national park, summer getaways

May 21, 2014 at 3:37 PM

Memorial Day openings for Olympic National Park campgrounds, more

Several feet of snow remain on the ground beginning at elevations above 3,000 feet, but Olympic National Park is adding a number of “open” signs to campgrounds and other facilities starting this Memorial Day weekend. The Staircase and Elwha campgrounds, both open year-round for primitive camping (pit toilets and no water), add drinking water and flush…

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Comments | More in Mount Rainier National Park, national parks, Northwest, Olympic National Park | Topics: campground openings, Lake Crescent Lodge, Memorial Day

May 20, 2014 at 5:17 PM

Paradise Inn opens Wednesday, much more at Rainier open for holiday weekend

Despite the 13 feet of snow remaining in meadows outside, Paradise Inn at Mount Rainier opens for the season Wednesday, and doors and gates will swing wide for Memorial Day weekend at several more public facilities in Mount Rainier National Park. Scheduled to open Friday, May 23, are the Stevens Canyon Road, White River Road…

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Comments | More in Mount Rainier National Park, national parks, Northwest, Parks, State Route 410, Washington state | Topics: Chinook Pass, mount rainier, mount rainier national park

May 16, 2014 at 4:11 PM

Truck-sized boulders close Rainier park road, hit vehicle

A rockfall involving “truck-sized boulders” that hit an unoccupied, parked vehicle has closed the Westside Road in Mount Rainier National Park, park officials said Friday. The rockfall occurred sometime prior to Thursday, May 14, when a park maintenance crew returning from a multi-night trip discovered it, at the Dry Creek public parking area. One rock hit a…

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Comments | Topics: mount rainier national park, road closure, rock fall

May 15, 2014 at 9:49 AM

Helicopter photo shows where Seattle skier died on Shuksan; body now recovered

Above is a photo of the area where a Seattle skier died in a fall caused by a snow slide Wednesday morning on Mount Shuksan, in North Cascades National Park, northeast of Bellingham. Here’s the text of a statement released Wednesday night from North Cascades National Park: “At 10:45 this morning, North Cascades National Park dispatch received a report…

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Comments | Topics: Mount Shuksan, North Cascades National Park, skier killed

April 17, 2014 at 12:12 PM

Free days at Mount Rainier, but still winter in Paradise

America’s national parks will be fee-free on April 19 and April 20, including Mount Rainier National Park. (Washington state parks are fee-free on April 19 and on April 22 to celebrate Earth Day) But don’t go rushing up to Paradise, the visitor area at  5,400 feet on Mount Rainier, expecting to take a hike or…

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Comments | More in national parks, state parks | Topics: fee-free days, lowland hikes, Mount Baker

March 26, 2014 at 4:12 PM

3 getaways for this weekend, from Long Beach Peninsula to Paradise

So there hasn’t been a lot of “lamb” about this March around Seattle. It’s been mostly a really cranky lion — with almost 5 inches more rain than normal for the month. Need a change of scene? Here are three quick ideas to get you out of town:

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Comments | More in List, national parks, Northwest, Parks, snow sports, weekend getaways | Topics: kite flying, kite museum, Long Beach

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