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Northwest Traveler

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

Category: North Cascades
January 16, 2015 at 9:45 AM

Recreation prohibited as rock slides block gated North Cascades Highway

If you like to hike, ski or snowshoe the western portion of the gated North Cascades Highway (SR 20) during its winter traffic closure, here’s discouraging news from North Cascades National Park, as of Friday morning: State Route 20 beyond the closed vehicle gate at Ross Dam Trailhead (MP 134) is temporarily closed to foot…

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Comments | More in North Cascades, North Cascades Highway, North Cascades National Park | Topics: Highway 20 rock slides, North Cascades Highway closure, North Cascades Highway rock slides

August 27, 2014 at 2:46 PM

Cascade River Road work delayed, so head for the hills

If you had canceled your annual fall hike to North Cascades National Park’s Cascade Pass because of the pending closure of the Cascade River Road, go ahead and make plans after all. The national park announced Wednesday that a major repair that would have meant a long closure this fall of the road’s last three miles…

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Comments | Topics: Cascade Pass, Cascade River Road, North Cascades National Park

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

May 7, 2014 at 4:56 PM

North Cascades Highway reopens just in time for Winthrop festival

[do action=”custom_iframe” url=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/wsdot/13875231744/in/set-72157642267729715/player/” width=”630″ height=”500″ scrolling=””/]Washington highway workers reopened  the North Cascades Highway at noon Thursday for the summer travel season. On  Monday the crews were still 3.5 miles apart, but they delivered on their hope to reopen the highway the day before the annual Winthrop 49er Days festival begins. Washington State Department of Transportation photos…

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Comments | Topics: North Cascades, North Cascades Highway, snow plowing

April 8, 2014 at 5:05 PM

Digging out the North Cascades Highway

High up in north-central Washington’s rugged mountains, crews are once again digging out the snow-buried North Cascades Highway. The road is a scenic short cut, through craggy mountains and forests, between Western Washington and the Methow Valley and gives access to high-country hiking. About 40 miles of the highway, also known as State Route 20,  is closed each winter because of  snowfall…

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Comments | More in North Cascades, North Cascades Highway | Topics: North Cascades Highway opening day, Washington DOT

January 16, 2014 at 4:14 PM

Snow-light Leavenworth throws a January luau

The Chelan County town of Leavenworth, with no snow for this weekend’s annual Bavarian Icefest,  is “making lemonade” with “our first, and perhaps last, Bavarian Ice Luau,” announced Jessica Robinson of the Leavenworth Chamber of Commerce. Temperatures around 50 degrees late this week in the Cascade Mountains town have helped scuttle plans to truck in lots…

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Comments | More in North Cascades, Northwest, snow sports, Washington state | Topics: Bavarian Icefest, Leavenworth, snow shortage

December 3, 2013 at 10:11 AM

North Cascades Highway closes for the winter

New snow, and avalanches, have prompted the closure of the North Cascades Highway for the season. Washington’s Department of Transportation announced the closure this morning. The scenic mountain  highway in northern Washington closes each winter.  This is one of the later closings; last year it closed Nov. 20 and reopened April 16. Get more information at the highway website.  

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Comments | More in North Cascades, North Cascades Highway | Topics: seasonal closure

October 1, 2013 at 4:05 PM

Recreation, economic blows for state as national parks close

You can't go to Mount Rainier National Park, thanks to the government shutdown which has closed national parks in Washington and throughout the country. (Elaine Thompson/AP photo)

You can’t go to Mount Rainier National Park, thanks to the government shutdown which has closed national parks in Washington state  and throughout the country. (Elaine Thompson/AP photo)

With national parks now closed because of the government shutdown, some of Washington state’s most popular scenic drives and outdoor recreation areas are off-limits to the public. And for communities around the parks it’s an economic body-blow with hotels, restaurants, shops and tour companies losing business.

“Our fall shoulder season is huge – usually,” said Mary Brelsford of the Olympic Peninsula Visitor Bureau.  And in Mount Rainier National Park alone, there

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Comments | Topics: government shutdown, mount rainier national park, olympic national park

September 9, 2013 at 3:05 PM

Two Washington mountain highways still closed by slides

A big boulder came down onto the North Cascades Highway in slides last week after heavy rains.  The popular, and scenic, mountain highway remains closed around Rainy Pass. (WSDOT photo)

A big boulder came down onto the North Cascades Highway in slides last week after heavy rains. The popular, and scenic, mountain highway remains closed around Rainy  Pass as crews clear the road. (WSDOT photo)

Parts of the North Cascades Highway and State Route 410 ( in the southern Cascades) remain closed because of mudslides late last week that blocked the roads. And extensive roadwork on US 2 (Steven Pass highway), near Leavenworth, has closed part of that road through Friday  – although a detour is in place.  

The slides on the North Cascades and 410 highways followed heavy rains that unleashed torrents of mud and rocks.  The state Department of Transportation hopes to reopen the North Cascades Highway at noon on Thursday (Sept. 12); there’s no reopening time yet for SR 410; check here for updates.

The North Cascades Highway, which links

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Comments | More in highways, national parks, North Cascades, North Cascades Highway, State Route 410 | Topics: mudslides, Washington highway closures

September 6, 2013 at 12:44 PM

Two Washington passes and Icicle Road closed by mudslides

In the southern  Cascades, Highway 410 has been closed by mudslides, 8 feet deep in some spots. (WSDOT photo)

In the southern Cascades, the Chinook Pass Highway has been closed by mudslides, 8 feet deep in some spots, in Yakima County. (WSDOT photo)

Mudslides have closed Washington’s scenic North Cascades Highway once again.  And in the southern Cascades, State Route 410 — the Chinook Pass Highway — is also closed by slides,  with parts of it buried 8 feet deep in mud.

A slide has also closed a popular recreational route, Icicle Road, near Leavenworth.

On the North Cascades Highway, heavy rain touched off the slides in several locations, with rocks and mud covering the highway, the Department of Transportation said Friday. The road, also known as Highway 20, is closed between mileposts 147 (10 miles west of Rainy Pass) and 171 (9 miles east of Washington Pass).

Mudslides earlier closed the popular North Cascades Highway for more than a week in August. Now it will be closed through this weekend, and a reopening date

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Comments | Topics: highway closures, mountain passes, mudslides

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