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Feb 21st
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Home National & State Parks Other NPs High Elevation Snow Delays Some Openings at Mount Rainier

High Elevation Snow Delays Some Openings at Mount Rainier

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It's almost the Fourth of July and many families are thinking about picnics and summer trips to a National Park in the West. But at Mount Rainier National Park in Washington, celebrating the Fouth means there's still a little snow around.

Deep and persistent snow levels at higher elevations on Mount Rainier will delay the opening of the road to Sunrise until at least July 8.

mora_sunrisecenterMore than 900 inches fell at Paradise this winter, approaching the all-time record set 40 years ago.

Park road crews, using bulldozers and a rotary snow blower, are working daily to remove snow from the road and hoped to reach the parking area at Sunrise before the end of June. Once access is available, additional park and Washington Conservation Corps crews will be brought into the area to shovel out buildings and activate the power and water systems.

A total of 907 inches of snow have fallen at Paradise since last July 1, 2010. The record for the park is 1,122 inches of snowfall during the 1971-72 season.

Cool and wet temperatures have persisted into June, delaying snow melt in the upper elevations and slowing snow removal operations that began in March.

Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) road crews have faced similar deep snow conditions on Highway 410, delaying the opening of Chinook Pass on the east side of the park.

Persistent snow conditions will also delay the opening of the White River Campground until July 1. The road to the campground is open and accessible. Mowich Road opening operations will be delayed until snow removal at Paradise and Sunrise are completed. All other park roads and areas are open.

Travelers are advised to check the park's website prior to a visit to get updated information on road and trail conditions, services and activities. Mount Rainier National Park's website is at:

National & State Parks