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Olympic National Park’s popular Heart O’the Hills campground will reopen this Friday after a six-month closure. The windstorm of December 15 – now known as the Hannukah Eve Windstorm of 2006 – felled hundreds of trees in the campground, damaging signs, picnic tables and other campground amenities.
“Reopening the Heart O’the Hills Campground marks an important step in our storm damage recovery,” said Olympic National Park Superintendent Bill Laitner. “Our crews have worked hard all winter and spring to restore public access to the park – their work, and the contributions of volunteers, have enabled us to welcome visitors back for the summer season.”
While vehicle access has been restored to all park areas damaged by the storms of 2006, Laitner reminds hikers that trails and trail bridges may still be damaged. “Anyone planning to hike in the park should check with the Wilderness Information Center for up to date condition reports.” Current trail conditions are also available at the park’s website.
In other park facility news, the Deer Park Road and campground are now opened for the summer season, along with the Hurricane Hill Road. The Obstruction Point Road is open as far as Waterhole; snow and weather conditions will determine an opening date for the full road.
The Queets Road remains closed at the Matheny Creek bridge due to a landslide. Restored access to the upper Queets Valley is anticipated later this year via an alternative route. The Dosewallips Road is closed outside the park boundary due to a washout on Olympic National Forest land; the U.S. Forest Service and Federal Highways Administration plan to release an environmental impact statement later this year to examine options for the future of the Dosewallips Road.