Expect delays due to road construction.
Road construction is underway from the Nisqually Entrance to Longmire. The road has very rough areas. All vehicles should proceed with caution. Mon to Fri expect up to 30 minute delays and slow travel for 7 miles. More »
Melting snow bridges and high streamflows create hazards for hikers, skiers, and snowshoers
Be aware of hidden- and potentially fatal- hazards created by snow bridges and high streamflows on Mount Rainier. More »
High avalanche risk and snow slides close Chinook and Cayuse passes for the year
Contact: Summer Derrey, WASDOT Communications, 509-577-1943 (Yakima/Chinook)
Contact: Kris Olsen, WSDOT Communications , 206-440-4475 (Shoreline/Cayuse))
Contact: Donna Rahier, Mount Rainier National Park, 360-569-6501 (Ashford)
CHINOOK PASS - Crews closed Chinook (SR 410) and Cayuse (SR 123) passes early Monday morning due to multiple snow slides. After further inspection, the passes will remain closed for the season.
"It's difficult for crews to maintain those routes and manage avalanche control through wet and unstable conditions like this," said Les Turnley, WSDOT maintenance supervisor.
Approximately 20 inches of snow fell on the passes Monday, Nov. 12. There is a small break in the weather this week and the next major storm is forecast for Friday.
Each year WSDOT closes Chinook and Cayuse passes, usually in November, for the winter due to high avalanche risk and hazardous driving conditions. The combination of avalanche danger, mountainous terrain, lack of cell phone service, inclement weather and relatively few vehicles on the roads make driving these passes in the winter potentially hazardous.
Chinook Pass (elevation 5,430 feet) is closed from Morse Creek (five miles east of the summit) to Crystal Mountain Boulevard (eight miles northwest of the summit).
Access to the Crystal Mountain Ski Resort on eastbound SR 410 remains open.
Cayuse Pass (SR 123) is closed within Mount Rainier National Park from the 4,675-foot Cayuse Pass summit to Stevens Canyon Road.
WSDOT offers a number of ways to get travel information:
Did You Know?
At Mount Rainier, winter snowfall is typically heaviest between the elevations of 5,000 and 8,000 feet. Paradise, at 5,420 feet, receives an average of 641 inches of snowfall (nearly 54 feet) every year, making it one of the consistently snowiest places on Earth of those where snowfall is measured.