telemark skiingbackcountry skiingPacific NorthwestWashington and Oregonweather linksThe Yuki AwardsMt. Rainier and Mt. Adams
Turns All Year
  Help | Search | Login | Register
Turns All Year Trip Reports
Backcountry Skiing and Snowboarding

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
12/16/18, 10:40 AM

Become a TAY Sponsor!
Trip Reports Sponsor
Marmot Mountain Works
Marmot Mountain Works
Turns All Year Trip Reports
(1) Viewing these pages constitutes your acceptance of the Terms of Use.
(2) Disclaimer: the accuracy of information here is unknown, use at your own risk.
(3) Trip Report monthly boards: only actual trip report starts a new thread.
(4) Keep it civil and constructive - that is the norm here.
Info Exchange

NWAC Avalanche
+  Turns All Year Trip Reports
|-+  Hot Air
| |-+  Road Conditions: mountain access
| | |-+  Road Conditions - North WA Cascades
| | | |-+  May 16, 2017, North Cascades Highway opening
« previous next »
Pages: [1] | Go Down Print
Author Topic: May 16, 2017, North Cascades Highway opening  (Read 716 times)

Posts: 479

May 16, 2017, North Cascades Highway opening
« on: 05/12/17, 11:29 AM »

May 11, 2017

WSDOT plans to reopen the North Cascades Highway at 11 a.m., Tuesday, May 16

Washington State Department of Transportation – NEWS

Northwest Region – 15700 Dayton Avenue – Shoreline, WA 98133 – 206-440-4000

North Central Region – 1551 N. Wenatchee Ave. - Wenatchee, WA  98801-1156 – 509-667-3000



May 11, 2017

Contacts:    Andrea E. Petrich, communications, 360-757-5963, Burlington
Jeff Adamson, communications, 509-667-2815, Wenatchee
SR 20/North Cascades Highway reopening planned for May 16 Warmer weather helped crews speed up the initial June estimate

DIABLO – It seemed like the winter weather might never end after record rain and snow pounded the state and delayed the reopening of State Route 20/North Cascades Highway. Finally, warmer temperatures, warm rain and sun arrived and should allow crews to reopen the road well ahead of the Memorial Day weekend.

With a lot of long days, and help from the weather, Washington State Department of Transportation crews turned eight weeks of work into 5-1/2. Crews are finishing final repairs and are planning to open the highway for the summer at 11 a.m., Tuesday, May 16.

“Not being able to start clearing until April 10 meant we couldn’t be open for the beginning of fishing season or Winthrop’s ‘49er Days Festival which we never like to happen,” said Don Becker, WSDOT’s maintenance supervisor in Twisp. “Crews always had a Memorial Day weekend opening as a goal, despite the estimates that told us June. Luckily, in the end, the weather was finally on our side.”

The warm weather helped melt some of the snow, but those conditions also increased the avalanche risk. Safety is WSDOT’s top priority and crews used spotters and safety ditches in the snow to keep themselves protected during clearing. Some chutes still have snow, but rain over the next few days is expected to cause them to slide and get cleaned up before the highway opens.

The clearing process

WSDOT crews started clearing back on Monday, April 10. Working from both sides, crews not only clear snow, they also repair pavement, signs and guardrails plus clear culverts and ditches of debris to ensure the highway is safe before it reopens

This year’s reopening is the third latest. You have to go back to June 14, 1974 to find the only time crews weren’t able to get this stretch open before the end of May.

Open for driving and recreation

Once the SR 20/North Cascade Highway gates open at milepost 134 and 171, the highway will remain open through the summer and into fall. Crews will close it when conditions in avalanche chutes become unsafe, usually a week or so before or after Thanksgiving.

When the highway is closed; skiers, backpackers, snowmobilers and other adventurers are welcome to use the closed stretch at their own risk. When crews are working on clearing, the area is closed Monday through Thursday.

Hyperlinks within the release:

 Eight weeks of work into six:
 Crews started clearing:
 Not only clear snow:
 Go back to 1974:
 SR 20/North Cascade Highway:

Pages: [1] | Go Up Print 
« previous next »
Jump to:  

Login with username, password and session length

Thank you to our sponsors!
click to visit our sponsor: Feathered Friends
Feathered Friends
click to visit our sponsor: Marmot Mountain Works
Marmot Mountain Works
click to visit our sponsor: Second Ascent
Second Ascent
click to visit our sponsor: American Alpine Institute
American Alpine Institute
click to visit our sponsor: Pro Guiding Service
Pro Guiding Service

Turns All Year Trip Reports ©2001-2010 Turns All Year LLC. All Rights Reserved

The opinions expressed in posts are those of the poster and do not necessarily
reflect the opinions of Trip Reports administrators or Turns All Year LLC

Turns All Year Trip Reports | Powered by SMF 1.0.6.
© 2001-2005, Lewis Media. All Rights Reserved.