SR 123 Cayuse Pass Reopens for the Season

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Date: May 19, 2017
Contact: Tracy Swartout, Mount Rainier NP, 360-569-6502
Contact: Nicole Daniels, WSDOT (Cayuse), 206-440-4479
Contact: Summer Derrey, WSDOT (Chinook), 509-577-1943

MOUNT RAINIER – Good news for recreationalists and those who simply enjoy the scenic route through Mount Rainier National Park: State Route 123 over Cayuse Pass officially reopened to traffic this morning. Due to a large amount of new snow and avalanche concerns, SR 410 over Chinook Pass will remain closed until sometime in June.

Travelers headed eastbound can now access Cayuse Pass by way of US 12 and SR 123. Those headed westbound can access the pass at the Crystal Mountain Boulevard gate on SR 410.

Washington State Department of Transportation maintenance crews cleared over 20 feet of snow off the highway in order to reopen in time for Memorial Day weekend.

In addition, crews had to repair and repave part of SR 410, reinstall road signs and clear branches and rocks that came down onto the road over the winter months.

How long will this stretch of highway be open?

WSDOT crews will keep Cayuse Pass open as long as it is safe to do so. The gates will close at mileposts 2.60 on SR 123, and 57.59 on SR 410, when snow starts filling up avalanche chutes, making it unsafe for travelers and crews to be on the road. That usually happens sometime in November

While the highway is open, drivers should still be prepared for winter driving conditions and make sure they have their emergency car kit ready at all times.

SR 410 Chinook Pass

Despite best efforts from maintenance crews, SR 410 over Chinook Pass will not reopen in time for Memorial Day weekend as previously forecasted.

WSDOT crews experienced a setback after receiving additional snowfall this week. The fresh snow created unstable avalanche conditions, which resulted in several natural slides and forced crews to backtrack on their clearing efforts. A specific reopening date has not been determined, and we will keep the public posted as new information becomes available. 

Last updated: May 19, 2017

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