With around 13 feet of snow still piled high on the ground at Paradise and along the roadsides, Mount Rainier National Park and Rainier Guest Services employees are working hard to get park facilities ready to open for the Memorial Day weekend - the beginning of the summer visitor season at Rainier.
This involves plowing the winter snows from the Stevens Canyon Road (east/west park connection), cleaning up the roadsides and ditches, and placing information and regulatory signs along the roadways of the newly opened areas; starting up water and utility systems at Cougar Rock and Ohanapecosh Campgrounds, and the Box Canyon and White River areas; and cleaning and preparing Paradise Inn to welcome visitors for its 97th season.
In addition, all the park’s housing units must be opened and cleaned for the 200-plus seasonal employees, many who live in the park throughout the summer.
For lodging reservations at Paradise Inn and the National Park Inn go to www.mtrainierguestservices.com or call 360-569-2275.
Washington State Depart-ment of Transportation advises that State Route 410 east over Chinook Pass is scheduled to open to the public in time for the holiday weekend.
For updates on current conditions check the park’s webpage at www.nps.gov/mora.